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10th April 2011

Stokes: I could not have asked for more

When we caught up with him he was proudly holding the ball that he’d used to skittle Hampshire earlier in the day, “It was good to finish off their innings this morning and to get three wickets and my first five wicket haul was brilliant.  

“I’m over the moon to be honest, to finish the day with some good figures and to get a hundred, I couldn’t ask for much more.  It was good to finally put in place all the practice I’ve had over the winter into the game.  There been a big improvement in my game from last year to now. 

“You always want to do well, there are still some improvements that I can make, I’m still going at quite a few runs an over so really want to get rid of that boundary ball I bowl.

“I do feel like I can contribute more with the ball, last year it was a little bit here and there but now I feel like hopefully, especially with the way I’ve played today, Colonel [Phil Mustard] can put some more trust in me with the ball. 

“It was great to get the hundred today, the 99 at Basingstoke last year was running through my mind all the way through the nineties, when Dominic [Cork] bought the field up it especially came to mind, but I definitely didn’t want to get stranded on 99 again.  

“Hitting five sixes was pretty special, I hit the first six and just thought, I’m going to keep on going here, there’s no point in stopping, I was hitting them quite well and I did think it would be nice to try and get six sixes in the over!   I was always going to come down the wicket again for the sixth ball but Dawson bowled the last delivery pretty well, it was quick, down leg side and I couldn’t really do anything with it.  

“From a team perspective, hopefully we can come out tomorrow and do a better with the ball than we did today in the last session.  

“We’ve all got our own games and as long as everybody sticks to that and doesn’t try to play a completely different role we’re going to do well and pile on the runs.  

“It disappointing that Stephen has picked up that injury, but we’ve got Liam, who can run in and bowl 20 overs on the bounce for us, he’s a fit lad and he’s a wicket taker as well.  

“We’ve obviously got Scott Borthwick and Ian Blackwell as well, both spinners, and I think the pitch is starting to wear away so I think there will be a bit of spin on there and invariable bounce so it’ll be a tough job for Hampshire to get those runs.”