Miracle man. Fierce competitor. Elegant and powerful batsman. England’s all-rounder. There are many ways to describe Ben Stokes and it appears that we can now add mischievous prankster to that list.

It has been a whirlwind 12 months for Stokes, who has achieved national hero status after leading England to a home World Cup win and producing countless breathtaking performances.

Over and over and over again he has stepped up in the most high-pressure situations to drag the Three Lions over the line.

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Surely the most fierce competitor in world cricket, no one reflects this England side’s never say die attitude more than the 28-year-old.

That passion can sometimes get the better of him (as a recent incident in South Africa has shown), however, a hilarious story from ECB head of communications Danny Reuben has revealed a more mischievous side to him.

You probably thought it was impossible to love Stokesy any more, didn’t you? I think this story might just change that!

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Speaking on the latest episode of the Barmy Army’s ‘The Shackles Are Off’ podcast, Reuben told the story of how the England all-rounder got one over on him just after the World Cup win.

He said: “He did stitch me up.

“Obviously, we won the game. There were celebrations on the field and then there was the mix-zone, which for the listeners that don’t know is an area where the world’s media can interview players.

“The players are on like a conveyor belt that goes along a stretch of about 20 metres where they can speak to all the media outlets from around the world.

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“It was Stokesy’s turn and he was coming down the corridor towards the media centre. I looked at him and thought ‘he’s not great. He looks like he’s had a few too many beers’, which is understandable. You’ve just won the World Cup, you’re celebrating.

“He comes up to me and says ‘I can’t go in there’. I said ‘No you can’t go in there looking like that.’ and sent him away.

He added: “Obviously a few were disappointed that they couldn’t speak to him and then afterwards he said to me ‘I stitched you up there, I was fine I just didn’t want to do any media. I wanted to celebrate in the moment with the team.’

“It was a bit frustrating but you can’t blame him. To be fair in the days after that, he did more than his fair share of media.”

You can’t help but love Stokesy for that little bit of mischief. He just wanted to celebrate with his teammates and if anyone deserved to, it was him!

To hear Reuben’s full interview and an intriguing insight into the England team, make sure you check out the latest episode of ‘The Shackles Are Off’ podcast.