Possible replacements for Ben Stokes in ODIs

Ben Stokes announced his retirement from one-day internationals as he played his final game against South Africa on Tuesday. Stokes left a huge legacy behind as he retires as one of the best all-rounders of the modern era.

However, what Stokes also left behind is a huge void in the England ODI team. Not only was he the perfect allrounder, but on his day, he could win a game single-handedly. It is almost impossible for England to find a replacement for Stokes in near future. They’ll have to work around it.

The saving grace for England is the abundance of all-rounders and their batting depth. A typical English side has batting options till number 10. The current resurgence of Liam Livingston as a bowler is another positive for England. Moeen Ali can even give a complete quota of 10 overs. England would look to exploit these resources and make up for the bowling of Stokes. They can, therefore, replace Stokes with a proper batsman. The following can be some of the replacements –

Philip Salt

The current England squad against South Africa has Philip Salt as the only batsman. Therefore, there are chances of him replacing Stokes right away. Salt is an opener but has played in the middle-order as well. He has shown great form in the series against the Netherlands with scores of 122 and 77 in the two ODIs. He also had a healthy strike rate of 135. Salt is only 25 years old and can do great things in the England middle-order if given a longer rope.

Image Credits: ESPNCricketinfo

Harry Brook

The England management holds Brook in high regard as he made his T20 debut last month at the age of 23. Brook didn’t score big but displayed signs of immense talent and potential. He has had an amazing 2022 as he scored a T20 century in the sub-continent for Lahore Qalandars in PSL 2022. Brook was also named in the ODI and Test squads for England’s series against India. This shows the amount of backing the ECB has for Brook to select him in all three formats.

Image Credits: Daily Mail

Dawid Malan

Stokes’ loss will affect the England ODI team. He could take the game home with the bat and had a knack for picking wickets at crucial intervals. Stokes’s innings in the 2019 World Cup final and his overall contribution will always be remembered. Eyebrows were raised after Malan was kept out from the ODI squad. However, Stokes’s retirement might be the opening for Malan in the England ODI team. The number #4 ranked T20 batsman has shown glimpses of brilliance in ODIs. Malan scored big in the series against the Netherlands. He had scores of 125 and 36* in the two matches. Malan certainly has more stability as a batsman than Salt. Malan, at the age of 34, also has overall experience and experience of playing in the middle order. He can add some stability playing at number 4 in the English batting lineup. Malan averages 53 in ODIs and can set up a perfect launch pad for Jos Buttler, Liam Livingston, and Moeen Ali.

Image Credits: Times of India

That leaves only one spot which might be for a specialized bowler like Reece Topley and Matthew Potts. Moeen Ali and Liam Livingston will have to bowl well as well. England can use their abundant source of bowling all-rounders like Sam Curran, Craig Overton, and David Willey till Archer and Wood get fit. Stay tuned at TheSportsWay for more daily updates.

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