Ben Stokes has been feted by Time magazine in its inaugural ‘100 Next’ List – a lofty collection of “rising stars shaping the future”.
The England all-rounder has enjoyed an unforgettable year, playing a starring role in the historic World Cup victory at Lord’s then producing one of Test cricket’s greatest ever innings in the Ashes Test at Headingley.
His place among the upper echelon of British sporting stars was duly assured, but in being picked out by the famous American news weekly alongside global leaders in entertainment, politics, science and activism he has reached a whole new audience.
The Time 100 Next List is billed as a forward-looking companion piece to the magazine’s traditional countdown of the world’s most influential people and contains characters as disparate as Pete Buttiegieg – a prospective candidate for the presidency of the United States – actor Ezra Miller, rapper Lil Nas X and tennis player Coco Gauff.
Actor and writer Stephen Fry penned Stokes’ tribute. In it he wrote: “In summer 2019, Ben Stokes unleashed two such explosions of greatness, each one enough to cement his reputation as one of the foremost all-around talents in cricketing history.
“Without him, England would not be world cricket champions and we would have lost a subsequent five-match series to our old rival Australia. He’ll never have to buy a drink again.”