World Cup

ICC World Cup 2023: Aakash Chopra Believes Virat Kohli Will Welcome Ben Stokes' ODI Comeback

The unexpected announcement of Ben Stokes' return to One Day International (ODI) cricket has taken the cricket world by storm over the past few days. Breaking his ODI retirement, Stokes' decision to rejoin the format was prompted by a persuasive appeal from ODI skipper Jos Buttler, which Stokes positively responded to. This significant development is being hailed as a strategic move for England, enhancing their chances of successfully defending the ICC World Cup title later this year.

In a recent YouTube video, cricket commentator Aakash Chopra shared his insights on the matter, suggesting that former Indian captain Virat Kohli would undoubtedly be pleased with Stokes' return to ODI cricket. Chopra emphasized that Kohli holds Stokes in high regard, viewing him as an exceptional player who excels under pressure situations.

Chopra stated, "If Ben Stokes is coming back, the first thing is that Virat Kohli will be happy because he is one of his especially liked players. He said as well that no one plays better than him under pressure."

Undoubtedly, Stokes has garnered a reputation for delivering standout performances in high-pressure scenarios. His pivotal contributions during critical moments have left a lasting impact on the cricketing world. Examples include his unbeaten 84 and crucial 8 runs off three balls in the Super Over during the 2019 World Cup final against New Zealand. Similarly, in the T20 World Cup final against Pakistan last year, Stokes' 52 runs off 49 balls steered his team to victory.

Aakash Chopra lauded Stokes as a "big-match player," echoing sentiments expressed by Luke Wright, a selector, who also praised Stokes' unmatched ability to shine under pressure.

Discussing the potential role Stokes could play in the upcoming ICC World Cup, Chopra envisioned him slotting into the middle order and steering the team's batting efforts. Stokes' inspirational leadership during the recent Ashes series and his history of performing exceptionally well under pressure situations make him an asset to the team. As Chopra emphasized, England's expectations are centered on Stokes delivering influential performances and taking charge of the game's momentum during the middle overs.

"His captaincy was inspirational in the recent Ashes and he played extremely inspirational knocks under pressure as well. That's the kind of role England are expecting, that he will come and do well under pressure. He will be seen batting in the middle order in the middle overs and he will be given the job to drive the game," Chopra concluded.

As cricket enthusiasts eagerly await the unfolding of the ICC World Cup 2023, the return of Ben Stokes to the ODI format has undoubtedly injected a new dimension of excitement and anticipation into the cricketing landscape.