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December 25, 2019

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Stokes a doubt for first test after father taken ill

England allrounder Ben Stokes was spending yesterday at the bedside of his father Ged, who is in a critical condition in hospital in Johannesburg.

The England and Wales Cricket Board said Ged Stokes, a former New Zealand rugby league player, had suffered a “serious illness” on Monday. The first test of the four-match series with South Africa starts in Centurion near Pretoria tomorrow. “The allrounder will not be at England’s training session at SuperSport Park this afternoon so that he can be at his father’s bedside,” the ECB statement said. Stokes, this month named BBC Sports Personality of the Year after his heroics in helping England lift the Cricket World Cup, is a vital member of the team, providing balance to the line-up as both a front-line batsman and bowler. Stokes senior, 64, played one rugby league test for New Zealand in 1982 and first moved to England as a player with Workington Town. Ged, whose full name is Gerard, lives just outside Christchurch, New Zealand with Stokes’ mother, Deb.


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