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England’s Ben Stokes says Queen Elizabeth II inspired the hosts in their match against South Africa

Captain Ben Stokes says England took “huge amounts of inspiration” from Queen Elizabeth II’s legacy in their third Test victory over South Africa. The second day was canceled as a mark of respect following the Queen’s death on Thursday before a tribute was played before Saturday’s game.

England won the Test by nine wickets and won the series 2-1.

Stokes said he would “never forget” the atmosphere at The Oval on Saturday.

The crowd fell silent as the players and umpires, all wearing black armbands, entered the field through a military guard of honor, before an official minute’s silence.

Singer Laura Wright opened the South African anthems before God Save the King, which was followed by sustained applause from the crowd.

“I’ll never forget walking out of the changing room onto the steps to complete silence,” Stokes said.

“We had no idea this was going to happen. The silence was deafening. It was unbelievable.

“You can see the upset but you can also see that everyone has respect for the Queen and her service to the country and around the world.

England's Ben Stokes says Queen Elizabeth II inspired the hosts in their match against South Africa

“I had never experienced anything like this before and it was very special to be a part of it. Singing the national anthem with a little change was special all over again. I will never forget that day.”

Britain’s longest-reigning Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday at the age of 96 after a 70-year reign.

After the first day was washed out and the second day canceled, the third day’s play began, with England completing a resounding victory on Monday morning.

Stokes said he had told his team before the match to be “hugely inspired” by what the Queen had done “to commit her life to the country during her reign”.

He added: “We obviously don’t do it anywhere near as much as it did for 70 years.

“We go out there and we represent this country, and we do it with great pride and honor.”

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