Ian Botham responds to captain comparisons with New England skipper Ben Stokes

Star all-rounder Ben Stokes was named England Tests captain, with the appointment drawing comparisons to Ian Botham’s 12-Test stint as skipper in the 1980s

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Ben Stokes captained the England Test

When Ben Stokes appointed England Last week’s Test Captain inevitably drew comparisons to the last two Talismanic all-rounders to get the job.

Andrew Flintoff and Ian Botham Both had ill-fated stints as skippers, with Flintoff responsible for England’s humiliating 5-0 whitewash in the 2006/07 Ashes and Botham failing to win a single Test in his 12 games as captain.

Despite concerns that captaincy will be asking too much of Stokes, one of England’s best batsmen, bowlers and outfield players, Botham believes the 30-year-old “will do very well as an England captain”.

“He was the only choice,” Botham said post on Sunday. “I had so much on my plate that we lost 1-0 and 2-0 to the mighty West Indies, not 5-0.

“You see Ben Stokes will do very well as England captain but you have to remember that cricket is not just about individuals. It’s about the team.”

Nasser Hussain also downplayed comparisons to Botham and Flintoff, insisting Stokes should be judged by their fights. “Ben Stokes was the right choice to become England’s new Test captain,” Hussain wrote in his column for the Daily Mail.

Ben Stokes has been named England Test captain


Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

“As Rob Key, the director of cricket, said on Thursday, he wasn’t the only choice… he was the best. Some people have pointed out that two other great all-rounders didn’t work as England captain.

“But don’t judge Stokes by how Ian Botham or Freddie Flintoff were doing. And while we’re talking all-rounders, Kapil Dev, Imran Khan and Shaun Pollock have all led their countries with distinction.

“The point is that Ben is his own boss. He’s ambitious, he’s got a good cricket brain and he’s been vice-captain. He is passionate and caring. Why wouldn’t you make him captain?”

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/cricket/england-ben-stokes-ian-botham-26848680 Ian Botham responds to captain comparisons with New England skipper Ben Stokes

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