He bats, he bowls, he fields like a demon – damn it, he could probably sort Brexit with a mighty swish of his dashing willow. Everything points to the fact that Ben Stokes is now The People’s choice as Britain’s prime minister.
He would take over from the honorary president of the Bumbling Old Etonians Cricket Club, Boris ‘Golden Duck’ Johnson. Stokes has just seized a miraculous victory from near certain disaster. Number Ten beckons for England’s Number Five.
“Ben Stokes could sort out Brexit with a stick of rhubarb,” opined Sir Geoffrey Boycott, reverse swept up in the Headingley hysteria. “He would knock Macron, Merkel and Tusk for six, as easily as if they were Australian bowlers!”
Indeed the political team GB needs a miracle of Stokesian proportions. But this near-miraculous victory has given Brexiters hope.
“If Ben Stokes can pull off an impossible victory against the Australians, what can’t he do?” asked a sweaty, drunk but ecstatic man who only gave his name as ‘Brexity McBrexitface’. “The Irish border problem would be hit for six before you could say silly mid-off!”
To be fair, the country is not unanimous in its choice of Ben Stokes. Labour still favour Jeremy Corbyn, although there are mutterings about bringing in Stokes’ staunch ally Jack Leach as the next Labour Leader. Jacob Rees-Mogg naturally favours W. G. Grace.
Former cricketers, and indeed anyone else who remembers the Test Match drama at Edgbaston in 2005, and at Headingley in 1981, are recovering from collective brain orgasm. They are joyously recalling former captain Mike Brearley’s impressive stint as interim prime minister after Margaret Thatcher had to retire hurt in The Falklands.
The massive problem that has stumped finer minds than Johnson’s will now be sorted by a man who can bowl several hundred overs in the sort of 50 degree heat only an English summer can provide, score more often than the current incumbent, and never be caught with sandpaper in his pocket.
At least until 4 September, when Ben Stokes will be required to quit politics and return to test cricket. Play up! Play up! And play the game!