Stokes announces retirement from ODI cricket

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Ben Stokes has announced he will retire from ODI cricket following England's clash with South Africa on Tuesday.

Stokes, who recently took over as England's red-ball captain and won his first four Tests in charge, was already set to miss the T20I series with South Africa and The Hundred to manage his workload.

The all-rounder has now opted to bow out from the 50-over format, in which he played an instrumental role in delivering England's greatest achievement, his remarkable 84 not out and a subsequent eight in the Super Over lifting them to victory in the 2019 World Cup final against New Zealand.

"I will play my last game for England in ODI cricket on Tuesday in Durham," Stokes said in a statement. "I have decided to retire from this format. This has been an incredibly tough decision to make. I have loved every minute of playing with my mates for England. We have had an incredible journey on the way.

"As hard as a decision as this was to come to, it's not as hard dealing with the fact I can't give my team-mates 100 per cent of myself in this format anymore. The England shirt deserves nothing less from anyone who wears it.

"Three formats are just unsustainable for me now. Not only do I feel that my body is letting me down because of the schedule and what is expected of us, but I also feel that I am taking the place of another player who can give Jos and the rest of the team their all. It's time for someone else to progress as a cricketer and make incredible memories like I have over the past 11 years.

"I will give everything I have to Test cricket, and now, with this decision, I feel I can also give my total commitment to the T20 format.

"I would like to wish Jos Buttler, Matthew Mott, the players and the support staff every success going forward. We have made great strides in white-ball cricket over the past seven years, and the future looks bright.

"I have loved all 104 games I have played so far, I've got one more, and it feels amazing to be playing my last game at my home ground in Durham.

"As always, the England fans have always been there for me and will continue to be there. You're the best fans in the world. I hope we can win on Tuesday and set the series up nicely against South Africa."

Stokes made his ODI debut against Ireland in August 2011.

He has scored 2,919 runs including three centuries and 21 half-centuries, in 104 ODI matches for England. His strike rate of 95.26 is the sixth-highest among England batters to have played over 50 innings.

As a bowler, he has taken 74 wickets at an average of 41.79 with one five-wicket haul, which came against Australia in 2013 when he took 5-61.

The 31-year-old scored five fifties and averaged 66.4 across 10 innings in the World Cup that culminated with Stokes producing the defining innings of a game seen by many as the greatest of all time.

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