“Sometimes though you just have to grin and bear it, and captaining England is one of those reasons”
Stokes had fractured the finger in mid-April while playing for the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL. He played six T20 Blast games for Durham in June and early July but had not been scheduled to take part in either the ODI or T20I leg of Pakistan’s tour until a number of Covid-19 cases in the England camp forced the entire squad into self-isolation, with Stokes captaining a new-look ODI side to a 3-0 win.
“It was a totally unexpected set of games for me and the truth is I would never have played under normal circumstances due to how much pain I was in with my left index finger,” Stokes wrote in his Daily Mirror column. “The surgery was a success after I had broken it at the IPL, but it was still so painful.
“Sometimes though you just have to grin and bear it, and captaining England is one of those reasons. The finger has healed structurally, but the pain was just ridiculous for where it should be so that is why I have now had an injection to ease it for the rest of the summer.
“I’ve got a bit of a break now, which should give the steroids time to take effect and allow me to play pain-free in the Hundred and then against India. Hopefully, my finger won’t be a problem by the time the India Test series comes around, because that is a huge series and one we are all desperate to perform well in.”
“We gave him every chance to be fit,” he said on Thursday. “He hasn’t played a lot of cricket and he’s had some R and R [rest and relaxation] at home and feels quite fresh. But the finger hasn’t come along as he and the medical team would have liked, so it’s important it’s as good as it can be for the Test matches against India.”
Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98