TL;DR: Stokes cynosure of series opener

Ben Stokes

TL;DR: Stokes cynosure of series opener

Stokes hasn't played for the Three Lions since September, after he was embroiled in an incident outside a Bristol nightclub, but having been granted unconditional bail on February 13, Stpkes was given the green light to fly to New Zealand, as he looks to put his troubles behind him, and focus on the cricket.

As Kane Williamson talked of the difference between one-day and Twenty20 cricket, you could sense a quiet, determined delight.

Since September, Stokes had been suspended by the European Central Bank and he was overlooked during the Ashes series loss and the following ODI series versus Australia, as the incident was taken up by court.

Previous series in New Zealand have shown that each ground has starkly different conditions and series are won and lost on the back of adaptability.

The Blackcaps are harking back to a more golden period of their home summer on the eve of a series against one-day global form side England.

"The plans and the blueprints are fairly different as it's a much longer format so it's important we go back to that".

"They've been on a run, have got a good well-balanced side and play extremely well at home", he said.

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Root is keen for the New Zealand series, which is followed by two Tests, to be all about the cricket.

"They (England) are aggressive from ball one with the bat".

"You can win a lot of games certainly with the bat, but restricting how many you chase down or controlling a game with the ball is so powerful".

'The way (we've) been adapting to conditions, which have changed a lot, has been a real strength'.

What has helped the 26-year-old has been a hunger to keep himself as fit as possible to ensure a smooth transition back into the side, which has come after it was confirmed that Stokes would not need to be present for his first hearing at Bristol crown court on 12 March.

New Zealand ODI squad (from): Kane Williamson (capt), Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), Henry Nicholls, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Todd Astle, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Matt Henry, Ish Sodhi.

Although England have not yet named their side for the first ODI, and Stokes is short of match practice, captain Eoin Morgan suggested Saturday he would be in the line-up.

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