Ben Stokes will miss the remainder of the Indian Premier League after suffering a fractured finger in the Rajasthan Royals opening match against the Punjab Kings.
The England allrounder will be out of up to 12 weeks which also rules him out of England’s home Test series against New Zealand.
The Royals will be cursing their luck this season and we are only two games into the Indian Premier League. Prior to the tournament Jofra Archer was ruled out for the first half of the campaign (and it could become the entire tournament).
The injury occurred while taking a catch in the deep to dismiss the Punjab Kings’ Chris Gayle. He left the field for treatment and did return, but never bowled another over. Stokes came out to bat but was dismissed for a three-ball duck.
Stokes will undergo surgery in Leeds upon his return to England.
Make no mistake; this is a massive blow for the Royals. Ben Stokes was like two players in one as he offers something that very few other players offer.
How many players in world cricket could make a team as a batsman or a bowler? Not many – off the top of my head probably only Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan.
In the 2020 IPL, Ben Stokes opened the batting and averaged an impressive 40.71 as he scored one century and one half-century. His strike rate of 142.50 was even more impressive considering the amount of runs he scored for the Royals.
He did not enjoy the best season with the ball in 2020 but his quality is undoubted. His injury will unsettle the Royals lineup drastically as the selectors will now have to fill his boots.
Fortunately for England it has happened early in the tournament. Missing the New Zealand series is not ideal, especially considering the form the Black Caps are in, but there is hope that Stokes will be fit for the ODIs against Pakistan starting on 8 July.
Whether he will be risked is another question considering that India visit for a five Test series in August and September.That is followed by the T20 Cricket World Cup and the Ashes where England will be hopeful of taking the urn off the Aussies.If you’re looking to bet on the Royals, Betwinner offers the latest IPL betting odds and access to the latest betting markets, along with the Betwinner promo code NEWBONUS which offers a welcome bonus when signing up.
It has been quite an unsettling time for period for Stokes who recently missed some international cricket after his father passed away. The allrounder will hope that the latter half of 2021 sees his fortunes turn around.