Following his heroics in the World Cup final, Stokes was nominated for the distinguished award alongside Kane Williamson.
England all-rounder Ben Stokes has said that although he is ‘flattered’ to be nominated for the New Zealander of the year award, the Black Caps captain Kane Williamson deserves the accolade more than anyone.
Stokes, who scored an unbeaten 84 in the World Cup final at Lord’s on July 14, was born in Christchurch, New Zealand, but moved to the UK with his family at the age of 12 because his father, Gerard, was coaching in England. But while his parents have moved back home to live in the South Island city of Christchurch, the all-rounder has been in the UK ever since.
And following his heroics at Lord’s, the 28-year-old was nominated for the distinguished award alongside Kane Williamson. However, speaking about the nomination, Stokes has said that it ‘won’t sit right with him to be nominated for this prestigious award.’
Taking to Instagram, the all-rounder wrote:
“I am flattered to be nominated for New Zealander of the Year. I am proud of my New Zealand and Maori heritage but it would not sit right with me to be nominated for this prestigious award. There are people who deserve this recognition more and have done a lot more for the country of New Zealand.
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“I have helped England lift a World Cup and my life is firmly established in the UK – it has been since I was 12-years old," he said.
“I feel the whole country should align their support to New Zealand captain Kane Williamson. He should be revered as a kiwi legend. He led his team in this World Cup with distinction and honour.
“He was the player of the tournament and an inspirational leader of men. He shows humility and empathy to every situation and is an all-round good bloke. He typifies what it is to be a New Zealander. He would be a worthy recipient of this accolade. New Zealand fully support him. He deserves it and gets my vote," he concluded.
Following his response, Twitter was full of praise.
Ben that's a really classy response.
— David Brown (@D_Browner) July 23, 2019
Well said Ben, great respect & humility 👏🙌
— Rob Fisher (@rob_fisher_efc) July 23, 2019
Very disappointing Ben. I've spent a good deal of time attempting to dislike you. You're making it particularly difficult with this type of humility.
— Shane Morrissy (@shanepmorrissy) July 23, 2019
Greatness recognises greatness.
— WK (@paperplanes_10) July 23, 2019
Stop being so awesome.
— Ross Jacobs (@riddley82) July 23, 2019
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Dibyangshu Sarkar