Ben Stokes posted a poignant message in memory of his late dad Ged on the eve of the Ashes series in Australia.

England's Cumbrian star Stokes used an Instagram post to pay an emotional tribute to Ged, who died a year ago tomorrow.

The all-rounder said his father would be on his mind throughout the First Test, which starts in Brisbane tomorrow.

Stokes accompanied a photo of himself with Ged and mum Deb with the words: “I wasn’t sure if I would ever walk out onto a field ever again a few months ago.

"I find it amazing that when I do walk out tomorrow I’ll be remembering you exactly one year on since you left us…you are gonna be with me this whole week."

Ged died on December 8 last year aged 65 after a battle with brain cancer.

Ben is set to play his first international match since the summer when he walks out for England at the Gabba.

News and Star: Ben Stokes pictured in the nets ahead of the first Test (photo: PA)Ben Stokes pictured in the nets ahead of the first Test (photo: PA)

The 30-year-old, who grew up in Cockermouth after the family moved to England from New Zealand, had taken an extended break from the game to focus on his mental well-bring and to rest an injured finger.

His return to the fold in time for the Ashes was welcomed as a huge boost to England, with Stokes' status as one of the world's leading all-rounders set to be a major factor in the series Down Under.

He returned to action for England in a warm-up game last week and is set for a key role against an Australia side captained by Pat Cummins.

Another social media post by Stokes said he was "ready for the big one".

Stokes' presence will hardly go unnoticed by an Aussie side who were on the receiving end of one of the great Test innings when he hit a remarkable matchwinning 135* at Headingley in 2019.

Australia's head coach Justin Langer admitted the memory of that innings - plus Stokes' prowess with the ball - cannot be ignored as the Cumbrian returns to the Test scene for the much-anticipated series.

"He's a great cricketer, no doubt about that," said Langer.

"I still have nightmares about his innings in that third Test.

"I probably have more nightmares about his [bowling] spell on day three of that game. He's an unbelievable athlete and a great competitor.

News and Star: Australia head coach Justin Langer (photo: PA)Australia head coach Justin Langer (photo: PA)

"It's great for the game that Ben Stokes is playing Ashes cricket, and we all love it.

"It's an Australian summer and it probably wouldn't be the same without the best players playing.

"It's nice to see and hopefully his health is good. We welcome him here because he is one of the superstars of the game."

Stokes' Instagram photo shows the star player paying his trademark tribute to Ged by bending forward a finger.

Ged had a finger amputated during his rugby career.