I love playing for Durham and am delighted to be signing a new long-term deal: Stokes Getty

England all-rounder Ben Stokes has signed a new three-year contract extension with Durham, a deal that will keep him at the club until the end of 2021.

It is a major boost for the county at a time when they are rebuilding after the loss of a host of homegrown players over the past three years. Since their forced Championship relegation by the ECB in 2016 because of financial issues, Durham have lost the likes of Keaton Jennings, Mark Stoneman and Scott Borthwick to other clubs and losing the services of one of the world's best all-rounders would have added insult to injury.

However, that has never realistically been an option for Stokes, a one club man at the county who gave him his debut in professional cricket and nurtured his talent during his early career. His England teammate Mark Wood has similarly been developed by Durham and has also stayed at the club.

Because of the affection he is held in by the club's supporters, Stokes remains such an important figure for Durham despite his England duties precluding him from playing much for them, a situation that is not going to change anytime soon.

"I love playing for Durham and am delighted to be signing a new long-term deal at the County where I learnt my trade," Stokes said. "I'm very passionate about helping Durham compete at the top level and if I am given any opportunities to play this season, I will give everything to the club."

The 27 year-old is currently playing for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL and will then return home at the end of April to join up with England to begin their World Cup preparations. Following that tournament, he will be involved in the Ashes series which means Durham may see him even less than they did last season when he played one Championship game and four T20 Blast matches.

Durham Cricket, Chief Executive, Tim Bostock, added: "Ben is one of the finest players in world cricket and we're delighted he has chosen to carry on his county career with Durham. He is now in the prime of his career and while we may not see him as much as we would like over the next year, his influence remains huge around the club.

"Ben is a shining example of what our young players can achieve with hard work and dedication to go alongside talent."