Ben Stokes left out of England squad for third India Test


Meanwhile, even if Stokes is cleared, he is unlikely to return to action soon as ECB's Cricket Disciplinary Commission (CDC) is due to meet within 48 hours of the verdict, to consider what sanctions - if any - should be directed at the allrounder and his teammate, Alex Hales for their role in the fracas outside Mbargo nightclub in the wake of their ODI victory in Bristol on September 24.

Stokes, 27, has said he was acting in self defence when he punched Ryan Ali, 28, and Ryan Hale, 27, in the incident.

England all-rounder Ben Stokes has been ruled out of the third Test against India, owing to the ongoing trial for affray at a Bristol court.

Mr Stokes and Mr Ali shook hands on leaving the dock.

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Stokes had maintained that he had stepped in to defend two men, whom he claimed were the target of homophobic abuse by Ali and Hale, a claim that was denied.

Anna Midgley, representing Ali, told the jury her client felt "regret" after watching the footage of himself brandishing a bottle after Stokes and Mr Hales came over.

Ali, an emergency services worker, suffered a fractured eye socket, while Mr Hale, a former soldier, was left with concussion after both were punched by the cricketer in the brawl.

He said his memory of the evening was "incomplete" because of the head injury he suffered when he was knocked out by Stokes.

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Ali recalled walking along the street with Hale, Barry and O'Connor, "having a laugh and some banter and the next thing I remember is having a tall blond man charging towards me".

"I would have to perceive a significant threat to do that".

"I just didn't want any trouble so I was backing away, trying to retreat".

A third man, Ryan Hale, 27, was acquitted of the charge last Thursday on the directions of the judge, Peter Blair QC.

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Stokes missed the match to face a hearing in Bristol on charges of affray and his replacement Chris Woakes made an unbeaten 137 and picked up four wickets to be named man of the match.