Ben Stokes: England all-rounder working hard on fitness, says Chris Woakes
Chris Woakes admitted the possibility of dropping Ben Stokes’ bowling as England seek to measure the Test series could be a blow.
Stokes was confined after being in distress with an apparent injury to his left knee during the rain-affected second Test at Seddon Park.
England confirmed before a decision is taken on whether he could bowl at the remainder of the innings, Stokes is going to be assessed.
“Ben’s overs are not just a bonus, he is a world-class bowler when he is at his very best,” Woakes said. “Of course we’ll transfer his overs, whether he could bowl or not I do not understand.
“He has obviously got a bit of pain in that left knee, so I don’t know just what it is but of course we need a Ben Stokes at full point if we could because he’s world class.”
Stokes underwent surgery and had additional difficulties on it in 2017.
He could now be rested ahead of the start of England’s four-Test show.
“Ben is one of the hardest trainers and works hard on his fitness and that which,” Woakes additional. “Hopefully we can get that correct. The staff will be working difficult to accomplish this.
“There is a small gap between the end of the Test match and also the start of the South Africa one so hopefully [they could ] get him close to 100 percent as possible.”
Tom Latham punished Stokes for falling 66 by finishing his 11th Test ton and ensuring New Zealand finished day one on 173-3 out of 54.3 overs.
“Ben, specifically, is most likely the toughest coach I have ever seen, particularly when it has to do with his his catching,” Woakes said.
“It’s only the way it belongs. Regrettably we have put down a couple and it has hurt ushopefully this one will not hurt us quite as badly as the previous one did.”