Image courtesy of: Zimbio
England’s director of cricket Andrew Strauss has revealed that vice-captain Ben Stokes is not necessarily “going to be a shoo-in” should newly appointed Test captain Joe Root be unavailable for a match.
Strauss described Stokes as “the perfect man” for the vice-captaincy, but insisted that decisions will be made about perhaps slotting in a more experienced individual if Root is unable to carry out his duties.
“The way we’ve approached this is we’ve said: ‘What do we need in a vice-captain? And what will complement Joe as captain as well as possible?'” Strauss said. “Ben Stokes is far and away the best candidate to do that. He’s developing fantastically quickly. So as second in charge, he’s the perfect man for that role at the moment.
“But just as when Joe was made vice-captain, that doesn’t necessarily mean Ben is going to be a shoo-in to be England captain at some stage in the future. I don’t think it would be right for me to say that, in absolutely every circumstance, Ben would definitely take over from Joe.”
Stokes has not had the chance to captain Durham or England in the past, but in order for him to gain some much-needed experience in the leadership department, Strauss admitted that it is likely the 25-year-old will take charge in warm-up matches.
“It’s not an easy thing to give people leadership experience when they’re in the England team 12 months of the year,” Strauss said. “So of course, we’ll look for opportunities to be able to do that. And I do think that, by and large, there’s no reason why he can’t take over. That’s certainly the intention.”