Ben Stokes, along with captain Joe Root was amongst the first set of England players to touch down in Australia for the upcoming Ashes series starting next month. The tour will mark the return of Ben Stokes, who had taken a break from cricket to work on his injury and mental health earlier this year. The talismanic-rounder bid an emotional farewell to his wife and two children on Instagram as he packed his bags for Australia.
Ben Stokes took to social media to share a photo of his children Layton, nine, and Libby, six, as well as wife Clare as he left the family home to travel to Australia for the upcoming Ashes. His wife also shared three pictures of Stokes hugging his children, writing: ‘Hate saying goodbye! But so proud and smiling through the tears!’ The all-rounder had earlier this week revealed that he cannot wait to make his return in the ‘pinnacle of Test cricket’ following his hiatus from cricket to protect his mental health and work on his recovery from a finger injury.
Stokes, along with captain Joe Root, opener Rory Burns, pacer Stuart Broad along with spinners Jack Leach and Dom Bess landed in Brisbane on Saturday. The players were taken to a Gold Coast resort, where they will spend a fortnight in quarantine before a pair of warm-up matches against an England Lions squad in Brisbane. The players and staff have been granted exemptions to train at Metricon Stadium after completing three days of hard quarantine in their hotel rooms.
Hello, Australia 👋
Our first group for the men's Ashes tour have arrived Down Under! 🇦🇺#ENGvAUS #Ashes pic.twitter.com/X3SJ0uu1R8
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) November 6, 2021
“Cricket Australia is working with the Queensland Government and Queensland Health to prioritise the health and safety of the community, players and support staff,” England said in a statement.
“The team will quarantine for 14 days but have an exemption to undertake training at Metricon Stadium under strict quarantine conditions from 10 November to 20 November.”
T20 World Cup stars like Jonny Bairstow and Jos Buttler will join the Ashes squad in Australia after completing their commitments in the UAE. They will arrive well before the first Ashes Test at the Gabba, starting on December 8. Former England batter and current assistant coach Graham Thorpe will lead the side’s preparations before head coach Chris Silverwood arrives with the World Cup group.
Vodafone Men’s Ashes v England
Nov 23-25: England v England Lions, Brisbane
Nov 30 – Dec 3: England v England Lions, Brisbane
Dec 1-3: Australian intra-squad match, Brisbane
Dec 9-12: Australia A v England Lions, Brisbane
First Test: December 8-12, The Gabba
Second Test: December 16-20, Adelaide Oval
Third Test: December 26-30, MCG
Fourth Test: January 5-9, SCG
Fifth Test: January 14-18, Perth Stadium