Conditions Are Part of the Challenge in Test Cricket: Ben Stokes

About the pitch at Motera, Stokes wrote that nobody has the slightest clue how the track would behave.

3 min read
Ben Stokes batting in the Chennai Test. 

One of England and world cricket’s finest currently, Ben Stokes swatted away any talk about playing conditions in Test cricket and believes the format demands proficiency irrespective of the pitch.

Ahead of the Pink-ball Test beginning Wednesday, Stokes made it clear that conditions is part of the challenge of the longer format of the game. India and England will play two Tests at the newly-refurbished Motera Stadium. The four-match series stands locked at 1-1.

"The thing about being a Test batsman is that you need to be able to handle all types of conditions. India is one of the places where it is a lot tougher for overseas batsmen to come and be successful, but then so too is England," he wrote in a column for the 'Daily Mirror'.

"And that is part of the game, the challenges and why we love it," he said.

Turning tracks in India became a talking point when some former England players such as Michael Vaughan asked whether such strips were ideal for Test cricket.

"Don't read too much into the fact that I didn't bowl a huge amount in the second game, I'm sure if it was a green seamer I would have bowled a lot more overs.

"I think there may be more reason for me to bowl under lights in the next game if it will help the team."

A lot is at stake for both India and England in the four-match series as the World Test Championships final spot is still up for grabs. While India need to win one and draw another to make it, England will have to triumph in both the remaining games.

About the pitch at Motera, Stokes wrote that nobody has the slightest clue how the track would behave.

"Generally around the world whenever these pink ball games are played there is always a period when the ball starts doing a bit under lights and it brings the seamers right into the game," Stokes wrote.

"For us out here that will be massive. And at a brand new ground that looks pretty impressive no-one will know just how it will react.

"We've got a good spin department, but hopefully with conditions that suit, we've certainly got a seam department to back them up strongly."

Stokes said the Test triumph of the English team that toured in 2012 has been an inspiration for the current side.

"There aren't too many teams who come away from India with a series win. The lads from 2012 are rightly proud of their achievement and the rest of us want to join Rooty, Jonny, Jimmy and Broady in achieving it for ourselves, and what a chance we've got," the 29-year-old said.

The outcome of the first two Test was pretty much decided by the team batting first and posting a massive total. If it was England in first Test, India did the same in the second. Stokes acknowledged the "scoreboard pressure".

"Scoreboard pressure in Test cricket is probably at its most prominent in the sub-continent, and plays a massive part in trying to win the game.

"The good thing is we know what it takes to win out here, so it is about putting that into practice once more, learning what we can from the second Test and delivering this week," he wrote.

(With PTI Inputs)

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