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Fried chicken and chocolate: Stokes's winning diet

August 26, 2019 11:43 IST

England's Ben Stokes celebrates winning the 3rd Ashes Test on Sunday

IMAGE: England's Ben Stokes celebrates winning the 3rd Ashes Test on Sunday. Photograph: Lee Smith/Action Images via Reuters

Ben Stokes proved yet again that he is on the verge of, if he is not already, becoming England's greatest cricketers when he single-handedly guided the hosts to a one-wicket win over Australia in the 3rd Ashes Test at Headingley in Leeds on Sunday.

And what did he eat before scripting that miraculous win? Takeaway chicken and chocolate bars! Yes, you read that right.


All-rounder Stokes was 61 not out, with England on 286-9, when he was joined out in the middle by last man Jack Leach.

In one of the greatest innings ever seen in 142 years of Test history, Stokes upped the tempo in a five-and-a-half hour stay of 219 balls, including 11 fours and eight sixes, that saw him finish on 135 not out as England squared the five-match series at 1-1.

At close of play on Saturday, Stokes was on two not out off 50 balls.

When asked what he did overnight, the 28-year-old left-handed batsman replied: "My wife and kids came down and they got there at around 10 o'clock. My wife walked into me eating pasta in my boxer shorts!

"Last night, I think had a knock-off Nandos (fried chicken) and two (chocolate) bars of Yorkie biscuit and raisin. And a couple of coffees in the morning."

Reflecting on his innings, Stokes said: "We knew if we lost this game then the Ashes were gone. When a No 11 comes out needing 70 (73 in fact) to win, I knew what I had to do in terms of the game situation," the England vice-captain added.

"The only time I started to get a little bit nervous or panicking was when we got into single figures." Stokes also paid tribute to a capacity, sun-drenched crowd, who even cheered England's defensive shots.

"Walking off there at the end when the whole of Headingley was standing up and celebrating was a very special moment and something I had to try to take in because moments like that don't come along very often."