Ben Stokes hails ‘best 12 months’ of career after winning Cricketer of the Year

Ben Stokes is going to need a bigger bar.

The gong-laden superstar of English cricket is now officially the best player in the world after claiming the Sir Garfield Sobers award from the ICC for the global game's leading men's cricketer.

And after picking up the award only won previously by English cricketers Andrew Flintoff and Jonathan Trott , Stokes' bar at home where he keeps the champagne and medals and trophies he is collecting at a rate of knots will soon start to creak.

It is nothing less than the 28-year-old Mirror Sport columnist deserves following his incredible 2019 in which he produced stunning performances in both Test and One Day cricket culminating in a maiden World Cup triumph at Lord's.

“It is quite flattering to win,” said Stokes. “The past 12 months have been incredible for England cricket and to lift the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup for the first time was our greatest achievement.

“The last 12 months have been the best in my career, and I believe what we attained will be the catalyst to achieve further success over the next few years.”

Stokes was typically gracious in thanking his team-mates too, because at the heart of his success is his desire for others to do well and share in the glory.

Rather than be delighted at making both the Test and ODI team of the year he will raise an eyebrow at the fact that only Jos Buttler joined him in the ODI team.

And skipper Joe Root emphasised that, since his return to international cricket following a brief hiatus in 2017, he couldn't have done anymore for his colleagues.

“I think it's the right decision obviously,” said Root. “The way he's performed all year, in all formats, it's just been fantastic to be part of the same team.

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