Ben Stokes has been ‘better than I ever thought’ would be as England’s Test captain, proclaims Rob Key

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Ben Stokes congratulating Jonny Bairstow after England's Edgbaston Test win vs India.

ICC

Ben Stokes has been ‘better than I ever thought’ would be as England’s Test captain, proclaims Rob Key

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SportsCafe Desk

07/15/2022

England's Director of cricket Rob Key has proclaimed that Ben Stokes has been better than he ever thought would be as their country's Test captain. At the same time, Key has mentioned that English cricket fans need to be ready when there will be times when 'Bazball' won't work in their favour.

After taking over the responsibility of England's full-time Test captain in May, Ben Stokes led England to a 3-0 win over world champions New Zealand before a historic victory over India last week at Edgbaston. Rob Key, England's Director of cricket who made Stokes' appointment heaped praise on Stokes, saying he would have never imagined Stokes would do that good right from the beginning.

"I never thought it would work like this. There will be times when it won't work, but for now, it's been fantastic to see" Key was quoted saying by BBC.

Key took over England's Director of Cricket job in April when England were on a run of just one win in their last 17 Tests. He brought in Stokes as skipper and Brendon McCullum and since then, everything has been working in their favour in the longest format of the game. In all four of their Tests so far, Stokes and his boys chased down fourth-innings targets on every occasion, including their record-breaking chase of 378 against India, leading to their new approach being nicknamed 'Bazball' tending on social media.

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"I'm not mad on Bazball the phrase. It's not something I particularly enjoy because it devalues what Ben and Brendon have done. They've been so premediated almost and methodical in the way they've spoken to people and that's what's made the difference and let them get to this point which is so much more than, 'oh, we're just going to go out there and look to be positive and play a few shots," Key added.

"Brendon will at times on purpose say to one of the players like Ollie Pope "I can't get to the ground, give us a lift" and that's when he's doing his work with them. There have been all these moments when they have made sure that they've used the right terminology and that's what's bred the confidence."

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