Ben Stokes has been named as Leading Cricketer in the World for the second consecutive year by a leading voice in the sport.
Ben has been named as the Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World for the second consecutive year in the 2021 Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack.
The 28-year-old cricketer moved to Allerdale from New Zealand at the age of 12 when his father Gerard was appointed head coach of Workington Town Rugby League Club.
He attended Cockermouth School and played cricket for Cockermouth Cricket Club, winning the North Lancashire and Cumbria Cricket League Premier Division title with the club as a 15-year-old in 2006.
Ben took the final three wickets in the finale of the Second Test against South Africa in Cape Town in January last year.
Stokes went on to hit 120 to help England win the next test at Port Elizabeth.
Finishing the series in Johannesburg, where Stokes was able to visit his father again, he contributed to a third and final victory for England against South Africa.
“Ben knows how much joy Gerard got from watching him play,” his mum Deborah told Wisden.
“At Cape Town, I thought that every run, every wicket, every catch was for his dad.”
Sixty-five-year-old Gerard revealed in August he had been diagnosed with brain cancer, having spent five weeks seriously ill in hospital. He died in December.
With Joe Root on paternity leave on cricket’s return – behind closed doors – in July, Ben captained the side for the First Test against West Indies.
England lost by four wickets, but Ben made 176 in the first innings in the Second Test in Manchester, then an unbeaten 78 in the second, when he picked up the bat.
The Wisden Trophy was England’s after the series ended.
By this point, Ben had overtaken West Indies captain Jason Holder as the ICC’s top-ranked Test all-rounder.
Ben scored more runs than anyone in the world in his seven tests in 2020 (641) and averaged 58 with the bat, 18 with the ball.