Stokes separates batting from bowling


All-rounder Ben Stokes has expressed pride amid a burgeoning role in England's Test XI.

All-rounder Ben Stokes has expressed pride amid a burgeoning role in England's Test XI.

Stokes' performance was the lone highlight during an otherwise dismal performance during the third Ashes Test in Perth recently, when the visitors slumped to a 150-run defeat – and three-nil series defeat.

The talented right-hander welcomed a maiden century in international cricket and secured three key wickets, all but cementing a berth ahead of the fourth fixture in Melbourne, which will get underway on 26 December.

"I'd like to be the genuine all-rounder I guess. At the moment, the last two years, my bowling's come on a hell of a lot," said Stokes.

"Batting, there's just that consistency that hasn't been there but hopefully with experience and time out in the middle everything will come together. I think I've got to try and separate it, the batting and bowling disciplines, because as an all-rounder you do both.

"But whenever I get given the ball or I've got the bat in my hand, I still go out there and try and do my best and try and win a game for England. It's always nice being an all-rounder because you're always going to be in the game.

"There's four innings so I get to play a decent role in all four of that which is always useful because if you have a bad day with one you can always have a good day with the other."

Outgunned three-nil in the United Kingdom earlier this year, Australia have since enjoyed a prompt turnaround, with the outstanding form fast bowler Mitchell Johnson and batsman David Warner epitomising success.

"There's still a lot to play for – personal pride and playing in front of a 100,000 at the MCG on Boxing Day, I don't think that will take much getting up for," added the New Zealand-born Stokes.

"It's going to be pretty special for everyone but we'll still be going out there, trying to win these last two Test matches."