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OTD – Ben Stokes’ heroics guided England to historical victory against Australia at Headingley in 2019

OTD - Ben Stokes' heroics guided England to historical victory against Australia at Headingley in 2019

On this day, four years ago, Ben Stokes etched his name into cricketing history with a performance that would forever be fresh in the hearts of fans worldwide. The day witnessed one of the most astounding Test innings ever played, as Stokes single-handedly guided England to an awe-inspiring victory over Australia in the third Ashes Test at Headingley.

Just over a month after his instrumental role in England’s dramatic World Cup victory, Stokes was at the center of yet another spectacular feat. The charismatic all-rounder’s unbeaten knock of 135 runs off 219 balls was the backbone of England’s successful chase of a monumental 359-run target. This triumph not only secured England’s highest-ever successful run chase in Test history but also showcased Stokes’s indomitable spirit and skill.

The match had started on a shaky note for England, with the team being bowled out for a mere 67 runs in their first innings. However, Stokes’s remarkable all-round ability came to the fore as he ignited a sensational comeback. His ferocious batting display was amazing, with 11 boundaries and 8 towering sixes.

Nathan Lyon missed a golden chance to win the game.

The partnership between Stokes and the last man standing, Jack Leach, was nothing short of miraculous. The 76-run stand for the final wicket defied the odds and showcased their unwavering determination. With every run, the tension mounted, and as Stokes struck the winning boundary, Headingley erupted with joy.

Stokes’s brilliance not only leveled the five-match series 1-1 but also kept England’s hopes of reclaiming the Ashes alive. The memorable innings marked Stokes’s eighth Test century and his third against Australia in the Ashes. His ability to thrive under pressure, his audacious shot selection, and his sheer determination etched the essence of cricket itself. Notably, in the recently concluded Ashes 2023, Stokes once again almost clinched the victory at Headingley, but he failed to repeat his heroics.

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