England to make late call on Stokes for T20 World Cup

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Ben Stokes and Chris Silverwood
Ben Stokes (left) last played for England in a one-day international against Pakistan on 13 July

England will leave a decision over Ben Stokes’ involvement in the T20 World Cup as late as possible, says head coach Chris Silverwood.

All-rounder Stokes has missed the Test series against India after announcing he would take an “indefinite break” from cricket for his mental wellbeing.

England will name their squad for the World Cup on Thursday.

“I’ll be putting no pressure on him or rushing him, and whatever support he needs he will get,” said Silverwood.

The World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and Oman runs from 17 October to 14 November. England play their first game against West Indies on 23 October.

They could make changes to their squad after it is named, but are unlikely to do so unless there are injuries.

The squad for the Ashes series in Australia, which starts on 8 December, is expected to be named in late September.

England are already without fast bowler Jofra Archer, who will be out until next year with an elbow injury.

Stokes, 30, said in July he was taking “an indefinite break from all cricket” to prioritise his mental wellbeing and rest his left index finger, which he broke playing for Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League in April.

Although Stokes has not spoken to Silverwood, he has had discussions with other members of the England set-up.

“I will give him as much space as I can, but there are people talking to him,” said Silverwood.

“My only concern is for him. I just want to make sure he’s OK. Once we’ve got to that, the rest of the questions will come.”

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