Ben Stokes hits FIVE sixes in a row to bring up a glorious 64-ball century for Durham


Ben Stokes hits a record 17 sixes as he scores a stunning 88-ball 161 for Durham against Worcestershire, in his first innings since being named the new England Test captain

  • Ben Stokes returned to action for first time for Durham in County Championship
  • Durham are in action at Worcestershire with Stokes appearing on day two
  • Stokes blasted his way to a 64-ball century during incredible morning display
  • The new Test captain set a new English record of 17 sixes in one innings
  • Stokes was eventually caught attempting another six while on 161 runs 
  • It’s Stokes first match since replacing Joe Root as England Test captain 

If Ben Stokes return to cricket on Friday is a taste of things to come now he is England captain then they will soon be putting their run of Test misery behind them.

Stokes made a quite astonishing 161 off just 88 balls for Durham against Worcestershire, including 17 sixes, a record for a first-class innings in England.

But the most extraordinary part of Stokes first knock since he limped away from England’s defeat in the Caribbean in Grenada with a knee injury was a cameo which came off the 20th over delivered by left-arm spinner Josh Baker.

Stokes is in action for the first time since replacing Joe Root as England Test captain

Stokes celebrates with David Bedingham after reaching the landmark in just 64 balls

Stokes, who had raced to 50 off 47 balls, began the 117th over of the Durham innings on 70 but by the end of it he was on 104 after smashing the first five balls for six and then the final one to the boundary for four.

And it said everything about Stokes that, far from celebrating a century off 64 balls, he was angry with himself for falling just short of emulating another great all-rounder in Sir Garry Sobers who hit Malcolm Nash of Glamorgan for six sixes in a first-class over at Swansea in 1968.

Even by Stokes standards this was something else. Yes, he took advantage of a flat pitch and short New Road boundaries. And, yes, the stage was set for him to enjoy himself when he entered the fray with a license to attack with Durham on 360 for four.

Ben Stokes hit an astonishing five sixes in a row to bring up a century for Durham

Ben Stokes hit an astonishing five sixes in a row to bring up a century for Durham

Stokes steps out to bat during Durham's County Championship clash at Worcestershire

Stokes steps out to bat during Durham’s County Championship clash at Worcestershire

But what followed was a ridiculous display of hitting that only ended when Stokes, in the selfless manner he has vowed to bring to the England captaincy, was caught attempting to hit his 18th six.

Had he cleared the ropes it would have been two more than the previous County Championship record held jointly by Andrew Symonds and Graham Napier, before the Durham declaration on 580 for six.

It was quite an end to quite a week for Stokes, who impressed on his unveiling as England captain at the Riverside on Tuesday before heading to Worcester for his first appearance in what will be a huge summer for him.

Stokes is playing his first match since being named as England's new Test captain

Stokes is playing his first match since being named as England’s new Test captain



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