Ben Stokes has announced his decision to take "an indefinite break from all cricket" to focus on mental health. Ben has pulled out from the England test series against India and would focus on recovery of his finger injury. Ben Stokes lost his father to cancer last year and also had to spend majority of the year away from home and family.

Ben Stokes, England, injury, Bangladesh, ICC Champions Trophy 2017
Ben StokesReuters

England Cricket Board comes out in support

The England Cricket Board has supported Stokes' decision. "Our primary focus has always been - and will continue to be - the mental health and welfare of all of our people. The demands on our athletes to prepare and play elite sport are relentless in a typical environment, but the ongoing pandemic has acutely compounded this. Spending significant amounts of time away from family, with minimal freedoms, is extremely challenging," ESPN cricinfo quoted Ashley Giles, England's director of men's cricket saying.

"The cumulative effect of operating almost continuously in these environments over the last 16 months has had a major impact on everyone's wellbeing. Ben will be given as long as he needs and we look forward to seeing him playing cricket for England in the future," he further said. Craig Overton has replaced Ben Stokes in the squad for the test series.

Ben Stokes
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Rajasthan Royals back Stokes

Although the news came in as a shock to the cricket fraternity and fans of Stokes, everyone has expressed their support to the player. "At the Royals and beyond we are all fully behind Ben and will support him in any way possible. He should take as long as he needs and thankfully has an amazing family and support system with him," Jake Lush McCrum, Rajasthan Royals CEO said.

Dinesh Karthik
Dinesh KarthikIANS

Dinesh Karthik reacts

"Omg, didn't see that coming. I remember my best friend @mukundabhinav speak about it. Recently @imVkohli spoke about this being something very real in covid times. Quarantining and bubble life isn't easy. I promise you. Looks easy because of the luxury, but the battle is within," wrote Dinesh Karthik.