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Ben Stokes Withdraws ODI Retirement Before World Cup, Named in Squad Against NZ

Ben Stokes has been named in England's upcoming four-match ODI series against New Zealand.

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Cricket
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England cricketer Ben Stokes has withdrawn his ODI retirement ahead of the 2023 ICC Men's Cricket World Cup. On Wednesday, 16 August, the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced the squad for the upcoming ODI series against New Zealand, with Stokes being named in the team.

Stokes announced his retirement from the ODI format last year, but continued to lead the team in Test cricket, and be a part of the T20I squad. He also played a significant role in helping England lift the T20I World Cup in November last year.

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Stokes' inclusion comes as a major boost for England, in their bid to win two World Cups in as many years. The all-rounder played a key role in England’s 2019 ODI World Cup victory, wherein he won the player of the match award in the final.

Earlier when asked if he will be playing the World Cup this year, Stokes reiterated that he remained retired. However, England’s white-ball coach Matthew Mott had claimed that skipper Jos Buttler would be convincing Ben to withdraw his retirement and play in the World Cup.

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Jofra Archer Remains Sidelined

While Stokes has returned to the Three Lions' ODI plans, Jofra Archer has not been named in the squad for the series against New Zealand, as he is still recovering from an elbow injury. Meanwhile, uncapped pacer Gus Atkinson as he received his maiden call-up. England has also announced the squad for T20I against the Black Caps.

Following the series against New Zealand, England will also play against neighbours Ireland before the World Cup. The four-match T20I series and four-match ODI series against the Blackcaps will be played from 30 August to 15 September, whilst the three-ODI series against Ireland will be played from 20 September to 26 September.

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