England's Ben Stokes
Ben Stokes says his main aim will be to make a positive impact with the bat and ball even as captain in the first Test. Image Credit: AFP

Dubai: Ben Stokes, the dashing England allrounder who will step in for Joe Root as England captain in the first Test against the West Indies, said he had never set a goal to lead the country and it would not change the way he goes about his game.

Regular captain Root is expected to miss the first Test starting July 8 at the Ageas Bowl as he has to attend the birth of his second child.

“I’ve never set a goal out to be a captain. Alastair Cook was always destined to be England captain after Andrew Strauss. Root was always destined to be captain after Cook. I’m not one of those people you would necessarily think of as the next England captain,” said Stokes.


“But it’s a huge honour. Even if it’s only the once you can still say ‘yeah, I’ve captained England’. So I’m really looking forward to it if the opportunity presents itself. But I know I’m only stepping in for one game because of Joe’s personal situation,” he told media.

“I always try to set the example in terms of attitude and commitment,” Stokes was quoted as saying. “Having the added responsibility of being a captain also comes with pressure, in terms of making decisions through tough periods of the game.

“But that’s not going to change the way that I go about things. I’ll try to make a positive impact with the ball or bat in my hand. No matter what I do, it will always be the positive route,” he added.

The three-Test series between the two teams will mark the resumption of cricket after the sport was suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic.