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Ben Stokes' teammate reveals superstition around lucky box

England spinner Jack Leach has revealed a bizarre superstition of all-rounder Ben Stokes, having stolen his protective box for his match winning innings against Australia earlier this week.

Kiwi-born Stokes proved to be England's hero in their fourth innings run chase against Australia at Headingley, plundering 135 not out as his side chased down 359 to level the Ashes at 1-1 after three Tests.

What's more impressive was Stokes' partnership with number 11 Leach, the pair adding 76 runs to steer England home. Leach finished not out with one.

Talking to the BBC's Somerset cricket podcast though, Leach revealed that Stokes had been wearing his protective box, having needed to borrow it in the previous Test at Lord's, making 115 not out.

"He uses my box now. In the Lord's game, he had to get ready quite quickly, there were a couple of wickets and he lost his box so he was panicking," Leach said.

"He was like; 'Leachy, can I borrow your box?'

"He was not out at the end of the day and he was like; 'this is going to sound weird, but I need to keep using your box.'

"So obviously I was like; 'yeah that's fine'."

Stokes' Lord's success has now seen him continue to use Leach's box, including during his victorious effort in Leeds.

"After that (Lord's) innings he was like; 'mate, I'm going to have to keep that box now. It's a bit of a superstitious thing'," Leach said.

"If Ben Stokes is happy, then I'm happy. It obviously worked again in this case."

Stokes will undoubtedly be wearing Leach's box once again when the fourth Ashes Test begins in Manchester on September 4.


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