Ben Stokes and Alex Hales fined but available for England selection

Ben Stokes and Alex Hales fined but available for England selection

The all-rounder has to pay a fine of £30,000 and has been told to pay half off it to a charity or charities.

Ben Stokes
England’s Ben Stokes. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Ben Stokes and Alex Hales’ careers had taken a turn for the worse in September 2017. Both the players were involved in an ugly brawl outside a pub in Bristol and the repercussions soon followed. England had dropped both the players immediately, thus making the duo miss the last two ODIs of the ongoing series against West Indies.

But it was just the start. While Hales lost his opening spot to Jonny Bairstow, Stokes was in for some major setbacks. He was stripped of vice-captaincy in Tests and was also dropped for the Ashes. Consequently, the all-rounder missed the Ashes as well as the subsequent ODI series and the Trans-Tasman T20I tri-series. But since then things brightened up for the two.

Stokes made his international return during the ODI series in New Zealand while Hales also won his place back in the ODI side. In July this year, Stokes was also cleared of the affray charges.

Relief for Stokes and Hales

Hales and Stokes would have heaved a sigh of relief after the England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) Cricket Discipline Commission (CDC) gave its verdict on Friday. The commission imposed hefty fines on the two but made them available for England selection. Both players accepted the charges of breaching ECB rules.

Stokes received a backdated 8-match ban which he has already served. The all-rounder also received a fine of £30,000 and has been told to pay half off it to a charity or charities.

“I have already apologised to my team-mates, coaches and support staff for the consequences of my actions in Bristol. I regret the incident ever happened and I apologise to England supporters and to the public for bringing the game into disrepute,” Stokes said.

Hales, on the other hand, received a suspended six-match ban. The top-order batsman has already missed two of those six matches while the remaining four will come into force in the next 12 months from the date of the hearing. The Nottinghamshire star also received a fine of £17,500, of which £10,000 is suspended. One condition of the suspension states that Hales must undertake appropriate training as approved by the ECB, or else the suspended elements of the penalty will be imposed.

“I am relieved today’s decision by the CDC means this chapter is now closed and I can move on with my career,” Hales said in a statement.

With no issue on their availability, both the players are more than likely to be a part of England’s touring party for the series in Caribbeans early next year. England will announce the Test and ODI squads on Monday.

~ Written by Bijoy

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