Stokes defiant in the face of England World Cup disaster

2019 Cricket World Cup
Stokes.Australia-PA

Ben Stokes was in a combative mood following England’s defeat to Australia, insisting that: “This is our world cup.”

England suffered a second straight defeat in the tournament versus Australia at Lord’s on Tuesday – their heaviest so far by the margin of 64 runs.

England always faced an uphill task after they failed to find the breakthrough within the first 10 overs, despite several close calls and numerous play-and-misses from the Aussie opening pair.

The platform laid by Aaron Finch 100 (116) and David Warner 53 (61) with their 123-run opening stand propelled Australia to a total that always appeared difficult to chase, especially on a Lord’s pitch that provided seam and swing in abundance.

The setback was England’s third loss of the tournament and now leaves the home nation in perilous waters, with the risk of failing to reach the knockout stage a genuine prospect.

Stokes has been the one batsman to have provided significant resistance in the past two matches, and asked whether he had a message for the home fans, Stokes said: “This is our World Cup.

“We’ve had great support over the last four years and we know how much a World Cup means to fans. We know that as players as well. We’re not going to take a backward step. This is our World Cup.”

“Back to back losses can sometimes make you think differently as a team, but we’re not going to go back on our method of playing,”

“We’re not for a minute going to take a backward step. We’re a very, very confident team, these last two games aren’t going to change that.”

During his innings, Stokes appeared to be suffering with a minor leg injury, but the Durham all-rounder was quick to allay any lay-off fears: “It wasn’t cramp, it was just tight calves.

“I suffer with it every now and then, especially on muggy days like this. There’s nothing to worry about.”