James Vince has insisted that England have enough strength and depth to cope without Ben Stokes during the Ashes. He also said that he was surprised to be called up for the five match Test series.
England arrived in Perth at the start of this week without Stokes who must remain in England while the investigation surrounding his arrest in Bristol continues.
Vince said that not having Stokes is “disappointing” but at the same time said, “it gives other guys the opportunity to stand up and make a name for themselves. We have a big squad and guys that are capable of stepping up and taking his spot.”
He empathised with Stokes saying that the player has had a “tough few weeks” and said that if he is able to come out to Australia it “it will be great for us and him. For the time being we get on without him and hopefully someone else will step up.”
Vince was a surprise inclusion in the squad after he has previously struggled at Test level. He has averaged just 19.27 in his last seven Test matches and admits to being surprised at his place.
“When the call first came in I was a little bit surprised but it’s had a little bit of chance to sink in now,” said Vince. “We’ve had a bit of a break and now we’re here. It’s a great chance to prepare and hopefully play a part in us winning the Ashes.”
He went on to say that he thinks he can make a significant contribution to the team, “Obviously it’s a different ball and you’ll be tested by pace. From a batting point of view, there’s some good tracks out there with pretty true bounce. George Bailey played at Hampshire and said I would enjoy playing on the pitches out here. If you get yourself in past the new ball there is runs to be scored. I’m looking forward to hopefully playing a big part for us.”