- Australia’s Steve Smith has hailed Ben Stokes’s return to England team
- Stokes has been included in England’s squad for the Ashes series
- The Ashes series will start from December 8 in Australia
Stokes announced this week that it will be able to take part in a series of five tests in Australia after taking a break from cricket to deal with mental health problems and biting finger injuries.
Smith acknowledged that Stokes‘ presence would be a great boost to England. England entered the blockbuster series as a weak man after repeatedly failing to fire down under.
“We love coming up against the best players and it’s great to hear he is going to be getting on the plane,” Smith told Australian reporters from the United Arab Emirates, where he is competing at the Twenty20 World Cup.
“I think any team is more dangerous when you have got someone like Ben Stokes playing. It adds a lot to their depth… it should make for a really good series.”
Smith said he was personally pleased that Stokes had resolved his mental health problems. After he left the game in July.
“Credit to Ben for being able to make that decision. And to step away and make sure he is right to be able to go out and play and live his life,” he said.
“There’s more out there sometimes than just the game of cricket. For him to be able to make that decision to step away and the acceptance from the ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) and everyone involved I think is really important.”
Smith said he had embarked on his own punch training due to an elbow injury. But did not expect it to be a problem for Ash as it will begin in Brisbane on December 8.
“I’m still taking it easy at the moment, just making sure I’m only batting two days in a row, not three days in a row,” he said.
“I’ll build up again as we get closer to playing some longer-format stuff.”
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