Stokes has been appointed as the new stand in skipper (Photo: Twitter @benstokes)

A team operates like well-oiled machinery at its finest. Every element of the team needs to work at its fullest potential. However, the most important part of this is possibly one person- the captain of the team.

A captain acts as the brains and spine of the whole team. Many decisions such as the playing eleven on the field, overall strategy, bowling and batting line up, and many more; the skipper plays a major role in these key decisions.

Stand-in skipper gets a dose of advice

Stand-in England Captain Ben Stokes says regular skipper Joe Root has given him a simple piece of advice ahead of Wednesday’s first test with West Indies — do it your way.

With Root missing for the birth of his second child, Stokes will get to pit himself against West Indies counterpart Jason Holder.

“The best advice I’ve received was when I got my photos done yesterday, with the blazer. Rooty just left a message on the hanger which said, ‘Do it your way’,” states Stokes.

“Because of Joe’s situation, we’ve been letting him deal with that and I haven’t been on him too much. But I know he’ll be at home watching and his phone will always be available if I need him,” he adds.

Stokes’ first big decision as captain will be to name his team along with Coach Chris Silverwood and there are tricky choices to look within his bowling attack.

James Anderson, Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes, and Mark Wood are competing for the three pace spots alongside Stokes and off-spinner Dom Bess.

“It’s not very often that we’ve been in a situation where we’ve got six or seven bowlers to choose from,” Stokes states. 

“It’s a real head-scratcher as somebody who’s got to choose the side but as a bigger picture it’s a great place to be in as a team.”