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England's Ben Stokes travels rocky road en route success

Former England cricketer Sir Ian Botham hailed Stokes as 'the Special One'

Brilliant innings by 'Big Ben'

England all-rounder Ben Stokes produced probably one of the greatest Test innings to help his team win the third Test by a narrow margin of a five-match Ashes series. 

Stokes scored an unbeaten 135 to win the third Test at Headingly and level the series. 

The innings included eight sixes and 11 fours and levelled the series at 1-1 after their highest-ever successful run chase in any Test. 

(Photograph:AFP)

Ben Stokes: 'The special one'

Former England cricketer Sir Ian Botham hailed Stokes as 'the Special One'.  

"I've banged the Ben Stokes drum for a long time now and I know when other players see him, they think there is something special about him. He is the 'Special One'. 

"He is very valuable to cricket, not just England; he will sell the game worldwide. He should enjoy every moment. It was a really remarkable performance."

(Photograph:AFP)

Stokes' love for Test cricket

After playing a match-winning knock, Stokes expressed his love for the longest format of the saying.

In an Instagram post, the cricketer posted a picture of himself and wrote, "I fu***g (don't care if I get fined) love Test Match Cricket and I love @englandcricket #ashes @mjleach17 is a legend photo cred @stuartbroad8".

(Photograph:AFP)

A story similar to CWC19 final

What happened at Leeds is quite similar to the story of Cricket World Cup 2019 final, where an expertly paced 84 not out saw England tie the 241 total of his native New Zealand at Lord's before a seemingly exhausted Stokes then hit the Super Over runs that helped his team to a narrow win. 

(Photograph:AFP)

Stokes for knighthood?

Former England skipper Michael Vaughan has asked UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to give the cricketer 'knighthood' right away. 

"We forget that @benstokes38. WON England the game with that 25 Over spell in the 2nd Aussie innings ... The guy is a bloody freak ... Just give him his Knighthood now @BorisJohnson... #Ashes," Vaughan tweeted.

(Photograph:AFP)

Quite a comeback after Bristol nightclub incident

Two years ago, Stokes was involved in a fracas outside a Bristol nightclub. He admitted bringing the game into disrepute and received a £30,000 pounds ($36,831.00) fine from the ECB. 

Although eventually cleared of a criminal charge of affray, the immediate fall-out from the incident saw Stokes stripped of the England vice-captaincy and not be considered for selection for the 2017/18 Ashes tour — a series where the team meekly subsided to a 4-0 series defeat by Australia. 

(Photograph:AFP)

World Twenty20 heartache

Stokes already knew about onfield setbacks — he had been the bowler who when asked to defend 19 in the last over of the 2016 World Twenty20 final in Kolkata, was promptly hit for four successive sixes by opposing all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite as the West Indies turned a seemingly certain defeat into a memorable win.   

(Photograph:Reuters)