Ben Stokes insists he had no hesitation in answering England’s SOS call to be captain of their ODI side.

The Cumbrian all-rounder leads the 50-over team for the first time against Pakistan today after stepping up amid an all-new team.

It followed the standing down of the original squad after a number of Covid-19 cases.

Stokes’ return to the international fold is ahead of schedule after his recent return to Durham county action from a broken finger.

But the Cockermouth star said he could not turn down the opportunity.

“It was the last call I was expecting, late in the evening,” said Stokes, speaking to Sky Sports.

“Spoons [head coach Chris Silverwood] straight up asked me the question, ‘Can you come and do it?’.

“After the call happened my wife sent me a screenshot of an article saying ‘England aren’t going to rush Ben Stokes back’. It’s one of these situations that’s an example of ‘if you don’t laugh you’ll cry’.

“But it was like when I came back for Durham a bit earlier - my job needed me to do something, so I had to stand up and do that.

“It’s the same with this. It’s earlier than planned from a medical and fitness point of view but when a job comes and calls you, you need to stand up and make yourself available.”

A number of uncapped players have joined Stokes in the squad.

The all-rounder won the toss and elected to bowl in today's game in Cardiff.

England’s second ODI against Pakistan is on Saturday at Lord’s with the third encounter at Edgbaston next Tuesday.