England’s Test head coach Brendon McCullum expressed his views on star all-rounder Ben Stokes’ retirement from the ODI format.
Stokes played his last ODI match for England in the first game against South Africa at his home ground in Chester-le-Street. Stokes announced the decision on the eve of the match to not play the 50-over format any longer.
Brendon McCullum happy with Ben Stokes’ decision to retire from ODIs
The England all-rounder finished his almost 11 years old career in ODI cricket with 105 caps, 2924 runs and 74 wickets. The Durham player was the architect behind England’s victory on boundary count in the 2019 World Cup final against New Zealand. He scored 465 runs at 66.42 and claimed seven wickets in an astounding campaign.
“Yeah of course I am. There are not too many all-format players,” McCullum told SENZ Breakfast when asked if he was happy with Stokes’ decision.
It would’ve become too much for Ben Stokes: Brendon McCullum on playing all formats
Stokes replaced Joe Root as England Test captain ahead of the summer and with him and McCullum at the helm, the team has won four matches on the trot chasing targets over 270 in each game. The former New Zealand skipper explained the busy schedule with Stokes along the line.
“He’s probably in a luxurious position that he’s able to do that, but also with the demands of the schedules and with his heightened schedule as Test captain, it would’ve become too much. He also has a young family and there’s a lot going on,” McCullum said.
“I don’t know if it’s symbolic of where the game itself is at around the globe, but I see it as an absolute positive to be honest. I’m looking forward to being able to spend even more time with ‘Stokesy’ trying to get this thing cracking,” he added.
England lost the first ODI to the Proteas by 62 runs and will aim to bounce back in the second match on Friday (July 22) at Old Trafford in Manchester.