LONDON (AFP) - Ben Stokes s outstanding match-winning overall performance inside the third Ashes test at Headingley upstages that of Ian Botham in 1981 at the same floor, consistent with former England captain Mike Brearley.

"it's miles tough to agree with Stokes s could ever have been, or even ever will be, passed," wrote Botham s 1981 captain in the instances.

both performances blanketed stamina and skill with the ball as well as a enormous overall performance with the bat, every of them securing slim wins for England in cricket s oldest competition.

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Stokes s 135 no longer out on Sunday secured an extraordinarily not likely one-wicket win over Australia -- England required seventy three whilst the closing batsman Jack Leach came to the wicket -- and accompanied a enormous 24-over bowling stint inside the vacationers  second innings at some stage in which he took three wickets.

Botham s overall performance in 1981 changed into equally heroic. In spite of taking six wickets in Australia s first innings after which scoring 50 in England s first dig, Botham came to crease a second time with the English following on.

His unbeaten 149 converted the final results of the take a look at, setting the level for Bob Willis to jot down his call into folklore with 8 wickets within the Australians  second innings as England sealed a incredible 18-run win.

Brearley likens Stokes, Botham and another celebrated all-rounder Freddie Flintoff, who became the star of the england s 2005 Ashes victory, to "the best specimen of the thoroughbred old English yeomen."

"vivid even though the images from the remote beyond are, intellectual photos of rampaging bowling and batting by all three iconic all-rounders, it's miles hard now to remove from the the front of my thoughts the shock, the exhilaration, of the current: the sheer improbability of Stokes s performance at Headingley closing week," wrote Brearley.

Brearley, seemed as one of britain s best captains, said the trio rode their good fortune at times.

"I just like the tale of the man who saved complaining to God about his bad good fortune in existence; why might God no longer at the least let him win the lottery?

"bored stiff at ultimate with those infinite proceedings, God barked down from the sky:  Do me a favour, as a minimum buy a ticket. 

"Stokes, Botham and Flintoff all did as an alternative greater than purchase tickets. By their courage, skill, conviction and genius, they earned their luck."

Brearley, who's now a respected psychoanalyst, said there had been similarities between Botham s Headingley innings and that of Stokes.

"In a manner, Botham s 149 now not out against Australia at Headingley in 1981 began where Stokes s one hundred thirty five not out left off, with outrageous rusticity and defiance, inside the quest for an apparently unreachable goal.

"Echoes of the village inexperienced at the first rate arena of Headingley."

Brearley, who received 17 and lost simply four of his 31 exams in charge of britain, said all 3 players might be humans "to enter fight with".

The 77-year-vintage additionally credit the britain and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for bringing Stokes back in spite of protestations from some after he changed into discovered not responsible of affray in a court docket case closing yr.

"a few fans of the game have been minded to exclude him as a bad have an impact on at the young," wrote Brearley.

"it is to the credit score of the ECB, and in the spirit of cricket, that they gave him a 2nd chance."