Auckland: Ben Stokes played a pivotal role to help England claim their maiden World Cup title. Stokes scored 465 runs at an average of 66.42 while he chipped-in with seven wickets in the World Cup 2019. Stokes played an unbeaten knock of 84 in the final on July 14 at Lord’s for which he was adjudged the player of the match. After his heroics in the showpiece event, Ben Stokes has been nominated for the ‘New Zealander of the Year’ award along with New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.
Stokes’ match-winning knock of 84 in the July 14 final at Lord’s allowed England to tie New Zealand’s score of 241-8 and he then helped the home team prevail after a tie-breaking Super Over in which both teams scored 15 runs. England won the match thanks to a superior boundary count.
New Zealand-born Stokes is among the nominees for the award, along with Black Caps captain Kane Williamson, Newstalk ZB host Simon Barnett, former league star Manu Vatuvei and one of the heroes of the Christchurch mosque attacks, Abdul Aziz, reports New Zealand Herald.
New Zealander of the Year awards chief judge Cameron Bennett said both Stokes and Williamson had received several nominations after the dramatic World Cup final.
“He might not have been playing for the Black Caps but, having been born in Christchurch, where his parents now live, and with Maori ancestry, there’s clearly a few Kiwis about who think we can still claim him,” Bennett said of Stokes.
England Prime Ministerial candidates Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt have already hinted that the all-rounder could be awarded a knighthood following his stupendous performance in England’s maiden men’s World Cup triumph.
The nominations for the award will close on September 15. A shortlist of 10 will be announced in December, with the winner to be confirmed next February.