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Captain Stokes 50/50 to start with win against New Zealand

Ben Stokes has succeeded Joe Root as the England Test cricket captain so get the latest odds on this summer’s Test series against New Zealand, next year’s Ashes and more…

England are around even money to win their first Test under new captain Ben Stokes against New Zealand next month.

The all-rounder takes over from Joe Root with England in dire form. They have won only one of their last 17 Tests, so it is to be hoped Stokes’ appointment can trigger an upturn in fortunes.

England begin their three Test series against the Black Caps at Lord’s on 2 June. They are 11/10 to win with the Draw 5/1 and New Zealand 5/4.

Stokes has been an inspirational figure for England in recent years, most famously in the summer of 2019, when he played important innings in their ODI World Cup-winning campaign and scored an extraordinary century to bring them a Test victory from an unlikely position against Australia at Headingley.

He captained England against West Indies when Root was absent in 2020. England lost that Test but won all three of the ODIs against Pakistan when Stokes stepped in for Eoin Morgan as captain in 2021.

The 30-year-old is under no illusions about the scale of the task ahead of him as he tries to rebuild England’s battered Test reputation.

The longer term target will be next summer’s Ashes.

England are 12/5 to win. Australia, who beat England 4-0 in the 2021/22 series Down Under, are 8/13 to retain the urn when they visit these shores.

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