File image of Virat Kohli and Ben Stokes© AFP
Following Ben Stokes’ shock ODI retirement announcement on Monday, Virat KOhli had a special message for the star allrounder. “You’re the most competitive bloke I’ve ever played against. Respect,” Kohli commented on Stokes’ Instagram post. Stokes released a statement on social media to announce his retirement from the 50-over format, stating that playing all three formats was “just unsustainable” for him. Stokes’ decision came a few months after he was appointed England’s Test captain. Stokes has so far played 104 ODIs for England, scoring 2919 runs with three centuries and 21 half-centuries, and taking 74 wickets. He has now reacted to Kohli’s compliment.
“I love Virat. He is going to go down as one of the greatest ever players to play the game in all three formats. He is a phenomenal player and I absolutely love that I have played against someone like him. The energy and the commitment that he gives to the game is something which I have admired even before I started playing against him. When you play guys like that, you understand what it means not just to yourself but everybody else what it means to play the game at the top level,” Stokes said on Sky Sports.
“I loved every single time I have played against him. I am sure we will have some more battles On the field.”
Earlier, in a statement, Stokes wrote: “I will play my last game for England in ODI cricket on Tuesday in Durham. I have decided to retire from this format.
“This has been an incredibly tough decision to make. I have loved every minute of playing with my mates for England. We have had an incredible journey on the way,” he wrote.
“As hard as a decision as this was to come to, it’s not as hard dealing with the fact I can’t give my teammates 100% of myself in this format anymore. The England shirt deserves nothing less from anyone who wears it,” he further added.
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