‘Unavailable’ Ben Stokes has been named in the 16-member England squad for the five-match ODI series against Australia. Alex Hales has also been named in the squad.
Stokes and Hales, who were unavailable for England after the street brawl incident in Bristol in September, have been recalled into the side. However, England and Wales Cricket Board had declared Stokes unavailable and cleared Hales in a release few days ago.
Stokes has been given No Objection Certificate (NOC) to play for Canterbury in Ford Trophy, New Zealand’s domestic one-day tournament. He was named in Ashes squad, but ECB later cut off his name.
England coach Trevor Bayliss has said that it will be a circus if Stokes makes a comeback in the English side.
“Whenever he comes back that’s going to be a bit of a circus for sure. Whether it’s any more of a circus than it’s already been, it’s hard to say. If it happens, let’s just get on with it and take it on the chin.
“I’m sure there will be a fair bit of scrutiny. We won’t know it actually until it comes along. There’s been a fair bit of scrutiny that’s come along with it in the first five or six weeks as well. But we’ve got to adjust to that at some stage,” he said.
“I’ve got absolutely no idea. Still waiting for the police report,” said Bayliss when asked if he expected Stokes to play.
The ODI series between Australia and England will start from January 14 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
England ODI squad: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Jake Ball, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Tom Curran, Alex Hales, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, David Willey, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood
-Ruffin, Correspondent, bdcrictime.com