Ashes 2017/18: Trevor Bayliss Prepared for Circus after Ben Stokes’ Inclusion in ODI squad: The ECB on Wednesday announced the squad for the five-match ODI series against Australia scheduled to begin on 14th January and had named Alex Hales and Ben Stokes.
Ben Stokes who has been named in the 16-man squad is currently awaiting the verdict of his investigation for the bar brawl in Bristol. Hales and Stokes were suspended by the ECB, as the two were involved in a brawl outside a bar in Bristol after which the police arrested stokes for causing bodily harm to a 27-year old.
Stokes was released the next day and is still under investigation for the incidence. Hales, on the other hand, was cleared by the police for any involvement in the event early this week and is now eligible to play for England. Both the cricketers have been named in the squad but whether or not Stokes joins Hales in the ODI team depends on the decision made by the Crown Prosecution Services (CPS).
However, even if the CPS charges stokes, he may remain in the squad if the ECB decides in his favour within 48 hours of the decision made by the CPS.
England’s coach, on the other hand, Trevor Bayliss is confident that Stokes’ return to the squad will not prove to be a distraction for the team and he and his team is prepared for the worst scenarios Down Under. Bayliss said,
“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.”
On being asked, whether Stokes is expected to play or not, he said,
“I’ve got absolutely no idea. Still waiting for the police report.”
Alex Hales who got cleared by the police and is included in the squad will have to fight for his place in the team, as Jason Roy replaced him in the final two ODI’s against the Windies scored 84 and 96, and is expected to retain his place in the playing XI.
Bayliss said on the situation,
“We’ve been playing some good one-day cricket, and Jonny Bairstow and Jason Roy at the top of the order have played well, I can’t see any changes there personally.”