'You look at Djokovic, Nick Kyrgios'- Ben Stokes on his rivalry with Virat Kohli

After Stokes brought curtains down on his ODI career last month, Kohli showed great sportsmanship spirit.

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Ben Stokes and Virat Kohli
Ben Stokes and Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Ben Stokes and Virat Kohli have shared a love-hate relationship on the field. The duo never shied away from showing their competitive sides mostly whenever India-England locked horns with each other. However, after Stokes brought curtains down on his ODI career last month, Kohli showed great sportsmanship spirit with a morale-boosting social media post which proved that their rivalry is only professional and the duo does not hold any personal grudges.

Commenting on their rivalry, Stokes made it clear that there are amazing contests and individual rivalries between sportspersons on the field, but once off it, there is always mutual respect and admiration for each other. Furthermore, the southpaw went on to equate his professional relationship with Virat with the reigning Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic and star Australian tennis sensation  Nick Kyrgios.

Sports produces amazing contests: Ben Stokes

“Look, sport produces amazing contests not only between teams but you also have those battles and contests between individuals. But at the end of the day, there is always respect between oppositions, between individuals, and it’s just in our sports. Just an example – you look at Djokovic and Nick Kyrgios. They have obviously had a huge rivalry but still at the end of the day, there is always that respect there between the two professional athletes. That’s the same for us and through sports. You are always going to have a battle and trying your hardest to win a game. But when it comes to the end of it, there is always that respect and that’s what great sport is. One sportsman respects the other,” said Stokes ahead of the release of his documentary ‘Ben Stokes: Phoenix from the Ashes’.

Ben Stokes, who had scored an unbeaten match-winning 84 in the 2019 World Cup final at Lord’s, is currently England’s Test captain and one of their star all-rounders in T20Is. He shockingly announced his retirement from One Day Internationals on July 18, 2022 citing workload management and his inability to give his 100% in that format.

Stokes’ sudden retirement from ODIs has put the Three Lions in a spot of bother as they strategize a way for a successful world cup title defence in India next year.

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