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England captain Ben Stokes (Photo: England Cricket/Twitter)
England captain Ben Stokes (Photo: England Cricket/Twitter)

England captain Ben Stokes wants his side to 'feel free' under his captaincy ahead of NZ clash

ANI | Updated: Jun 01, 2022 20:46 IST

London [UK], June 1 (ANI): England's new skipper Ben Stokes said he wanted his side to 'feel free' under his captaincy as James Anderson and Stuart Broad were recalled for the first Test against New Zealand at Lord's starting on Thursday.
Stokes has taken over as captain from Joe Root, with England on a woeful run of one win in 17 Tests.
"I just want everyone to feel free under my captaincy," ESPNCricinfo quoted Stokes as saying.
"Obviously there has been talked around the word 'reset', which is something I don't particularly like. I just see this as a complete and utter blank canvas for this Test team going forward," he added.
"We have got so much experience in that dressing room, with myself, Joe, Broady, Jimmy, Jonny [Bairstow], and at the other end we've younger lads with inexperience, but this is our time. We are going to dictate how things go, going forward. There is nothing on this blank canvas. Everyone is starting fresh now, whether you are Matt Potts or Stuart Broad or Jimmy Anderson," Stokes added.

The 23-year-old Matthew Potts has been selected on the back of a fine start to the county season, having taken 35 wickets for Durham in his opening six County Championship matches.
"Obviously he's a Durham lad - there's no bias there. I've got to know him over the years at Durham, and he has been outstanding in the games I have played, and even before that - he has been the guy that Scott Borthwick [their captain] has turned to take the wickets," Stokes said.
The England captain counts on the support of Joe Root, who is back in the ranks for the first time since 2016 having guided England.
"He says he is always going to be there, offering support and stuff like that, but he also said he doesn't want to feel like he's getting in the way," Stokes said.
"He just wants to let me be me, and I said the same to him: 'Mate, just concentrate on your batting now, you don't have all the extra responsibility on your shoulders. Don't feel like you have to come to me, just concentrate on getting your runs, and I will come to you when I need some advice,' he added.
The first Test between England and New Zealand gets underway on June 2 at the Lord's Cricket Ground. (ANI)