Ben Stokes expects an eventful Ashes series

Ben Stokes expects an eventful Ashes series
Ben Stokes during a press conference ahead of the first Investec Ashes Test.
©REUTERS / Action Images
 

England all-rounder Ben Stokes predicts the upcoming Ashes series against Australia will be filled with verbal exchanges on the field.

The 24-year-old, who made his debut in the previous Ashes series in Australia, declared that England will not back off from verbal volleys during the series that begins next week.

"I'm definitely expecting some feuds out on the pitch,” said Stokes.

"I don't go looking for it and I don't go out of my way to cause an argument, but if someone comes at you on the pitch in the heat of the moment and the adrenaline is going then no one in this squad is one to shy away from it.”

Stokes revealed that the various members of the England team had come up with methods to counter the aggression of opponents.

Known to be a feisty character on the field, the Durham all-rounder feels that the best way to battle aggression is by fighting fire with fire.

"We all have different ways of handling it.

“Some guys walk away from it and don't get involved but I'll look them in the eye and probably say something.

"I think it's a strength of mine.”

Getting under the skin of the opponent is something Stokes feels is vital in a high-intensity game like the Ashes series.

Stokes was in the thick of the action during the tour of the Caribbean where he got stuck in at the West Indian players - particularly Marlon Samuels. 

“Being in a battle, you don't want to be the loser.

“I don't want to take a backward step and let them know they are on top of me, or that they can say what they want and get away with it."

Stokes is wary of the scars left behind from the previous Ashes series in Australia, which England lost 5-0 - their second whitewash in recent memory following the same scoreline in 2006/7.

However, the 24-year-old remains confident of turning things around this time, playing in home conditions.

"My Ashes memories are not too good but we are taking a lot of confidence into this series," he said.

"We are in a really good frame of mind at the moment and we want to carry on the good form that we have strung together."

Stokes was the only England player to score a century during the previous Ashes series in Australia. 

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