With the news of his arrest for hospitalising a 27 year-old man emerging less than 24 hours before England announce their squad for this winter’s Ashes series, the timing could not have been worse
England vice-captain Ben Stokes was arrested on suspicion of causing actual bodily harm after a 27-year-old man was hospitalised during a late-night incident in Bristol – but is still expected to be picked in England’s Ashes squad on Wednesday morning.
Stokes was out in the Queens Road area of the city – near the popular nightclub Mbargos – after England’s ODI win over West Indies on Sunday, when a scuffle is understood to have broken out shortly after 2am.
The Avon & Somerset Police have confirmed that “a 27-year-old man suffered facial injuries and was taken to the Bristol Royal Infirmary for treatment.”
Stuart Broad tells an interesting story in his autobiography about Ben Stokes and Mark Wood staging a fake fight during a team quiz night on England’s pre-Ashes bonding trip to Spain in 2015.
Broad sets the scene on this fancy dress evening, with Stokes, dressed up as a “chavvy Brit abroad”, being called a “c***” by his Durham team-mate in front of everyone, including new coach Trevor Bayliss.
“Before Trev knew what was happening, ‘Bang!’, Woody was lying on the floor in a heap after Stokesy had apparently knocked his lights out,” says Broad.
And with the news emerging less than 24 hours before England announce their squad for this winter’s Ashes series, the timing could not have been worse.
If a story could have been designed to cause maximum damage to England’s campaign in Australia this is it.
Whatever the results of the investigation – and Avon and Somerset Police have made a public appeal for witnesses – for Stokes to put himself in this position was reckless at best.