Ben Stokes: cricketer comes out of ODI retirement ahead of 2023 World Cup in India - age and knee injury explained

England’s talisman is ready for another ODI World Cup, despite formerly criticising scheduling

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It has been announced that Ben Stokes has been named in a 15-man squad for a four-match series against New Zealand in September. This squad selection and u-turn on Stokes’ ODI career comes ahead of the upcoming ODI World Cup which takes place in India later this autumn.

It is imagined that the bulk of those selected for the New Zealand ODI series will form the touring party for England’s World Cup defence as they look to continue their reign as ODI and T20 world champions.

Stokes was named man of the match in the final which saw England lift the trophy for the first ever time back in 2019. It was arguably one of the most dramatic ever finals, with the sides going to a super over in order to determine who would be crowned champions. England then won after it was determined they had hit more boundaries than New Zealand and Eoin Morgan’s side lifted the trophy “by the barest of margins.”

Stokes has continued to play in England’s T20 squads, forming part of the team that won the 20-over World Cup in Australia, and is now the red-ball captain, recently leading the Lions to a 2-2 draw in the Ashes 2023 series.

When asked back in July whether he would return to play in the World Cup, the 32-year-old reiterated he was retired but following an interview in the DailyMail with England white-ball coach Matthew Mott, it was revealed that captain Jos Buttler would be approaching Stokes over reversing his decision.

England currently have no Test matches until they tour India for a five-match series between January and March next year and Stokes had planned to use the gap in the schedule to address a long-standing left-knee problem which has severely limited his ability to bowl.

It is therefore understood he will be used largely in the World Cup as a specialist batter.

When is England next in action?

England will play their four-match ODI series on 8 September, 10 September, 13 and 15 September before playing three ODIs against Ireland at the end of the month. A separate squad will be named closer to the time for the latter series and it is expected that due to the series’ proximity to the World Cup, most of the first-choice players will be rested.

The ODI World Cup begins on 5 October with England hopeful of repeating their 2019 magic. England’s opening match at the tournament will ironically be against New Zealand who will be sure to hope for revenge.


Jos Buttler (C), Moeen Ali, Gus Atkinson, Jonny Bairstow, Sam Curran, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Reece Topley, David Wille, Mark Wood, Chris Woakes.