England’s Test captain, Ben Stokes, has announced he will not be participating in the forthcoming ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, scheduled in the West Indies and USA in June this year.

Reason for Stokes’ withdrawal from T20 World Cup 2024

This decision comes as Stokes prioritizes regaining full bowling fitness for the upcoming Test season, which includes two three-match series against West Indies and Sri Lanka.

Stokes, known for his all-rounder capabilities, wants to ensure he can contribute with both bat and ball across all formats. He recently acknowledged that England’s Test tour of India exposed his lack of bowling fitness following knee surgery and a nine-month break.

“I’m working hard and focusing on building my bowling fitness back up to fulfil a full role as an all-rounder in all formats of cricket,” Stokes said in his official statement.

“Opting out of the IPL and the World Cup will hopefully be a sacrifice that allows me to be the all-rounder I want to be for the foreseeable future.”

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After skipping the T20 World Cup, Stokes will now focus on playing for Durham in the County Championship. He remains committed to England Test team and wished the squad, led by Jos Buttler and coach Matthew Mott, the best of luck in defending their T20 World Cup title.

“I wish Jos (Buttler), Motty (white-ball coach Matthew Mott) and all the team the best of luck in defending our title,” Stokes added.

England’s T20 World Cup 2024 opponents

The ICC tournament will kick-start on June 4, with England squaring off with Scotland at the Kensington Oval in Barbados. The group stage will see them play Australia, Oman and Namibia before potentially progressing to the Super 8 and knockout stages.

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Stokes’ absence is a significant blow to England’s T20 World Cup defense, but his focus on regaining full fitness bodes well for the future of his all-round abilities across all formats.

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