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Other SportsIndia v England: Robinson recall excites captain Stokes

India v England: Robinson recall excites captain Stokes

Captain Ben Stokes is excited to see the new-look Ollie Robinson get the opportunity to bowl England back into the series against India.

Robinson was today named in the team for the fourth Test in Ranchi that starts tomorrow, replacing Mark Wood, in what will be his first appearance for England since July.

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The 30-year-old has an impressive record at Test level having taken 76 wickets at an average of 22.21 but injuries have stalled his career with question marks also surrounding his fitness levels.

Robinson has worked hard over the winter to get himself in shape and has finally been rewarded with England hoping he can help them hit back from 2-1 down with two games to play.

Stokes said: “I’m really excited for him to get his go. 

“He’s been an incredible professional, the way in which he’s operated. Not playing the first three games is extremely disappointing, especially for someone who has played such a vital role over the past two years. 

“The way he kept everything going, going and going through the obvious disappointment of not playing is a great way to operate. Now the chance is here. He has done everything he has needed to and I’m really looking forward to seeing him out on the park again.” 

Robinson is likely to share the new ball with the evergreen James Anderson who, at 41 years of age, is just four wickets short of 700 in Test cricket.

“If you’re a young fast bowler, Jimmy Anderson is the one person who you want as your role model,” added Stokes.

“Not only the amount of wickets he’s got but the fact he can keep going at his age. Backing a very high-workload Test match in five days, being fit and raring to go, and feeling as fresh as a fiddle. 

“Jimmy’s wickets, his longevity and his age, he’s an unbelievable role model to all young kids out there who want to be a fast bowler when they grow up.

“Even saying he’s approaching 700 Test wickets as a fast bowler is incredible. I think he’ll know that, but I don’t think that will be at the top of his mind for this week, just because of where we’re at in the series.”

The pitch in Ranchi has already caused plenty of debate with England vice-captain Ollie Pope describing it as “platey”.

Stokes said: “It looked interesting, didn’t it? I don’t know. I can’t say much.

“If you looked down one side of opposite ends it just looked different to what I am used to seeing, especially out in India. It looked green and grassy up in the changing-rooms, but then you go out there, it looked different. Very dark and crumbly and quite a few cracks in it.”

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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