England had a shaky start in their cricket match, giving away wickets carelessly, and their captain Joe Root’s dismissal was reminiscent of a scene from the movie ‘Lagaan.’ When Moeen Ali also departed, England was in danger of not qualifying for the Champions Trophy in 2025. However, Ben Stokes emerged as their savior, scoring a well-paced 108 runs from 84 balls. His brilliant performance led England to a resounding 160-run victory over the Netherlands. This win helped England climb to 7th place on the points table, and they still had a game left against Pakistan. England’s batting started well, with Dawid Malan leading the way.
Despite losing several wickets during the middle overs, Ben Stokes remained steadfast and played a restrained inning, in contrast to his usual aggressive style. The Stokes-McCullum method of attacking and gaining the upper hand was adapted to the situation. Stokes chose to build a foundation before unleashing his strokes. He was fortunate to survive a couple of close calls, including a dropped catch and a DRS decision in his favor. As the match entered the death overs, Stokes shifted gears, hitting boundaries and making the most of his opportunities.
Chris Woakes, with 51 runs from 45 balls, supported Stokes effectively, and they together added 90 runs in the last six overs. Stokes reached his century with a reverse sweep, and his contribution was acknowledged by his team as they stood up to applaud. England’s score turned out to be enough, as their bowlers found early swing and the spinners, Ali and Adil Rashid, managed to take five wickets in total. Chasing 340 runs, the Netherlands struggled to keep up, and England secured a comfortable victory.
This win was significant for England, which had faced several defeats in the tournament, and Ben Stokes played a crucial role in rescuing his team with a memorable century.
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