Ill-advised night out jersey in Bristol could bring back

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Apart from the odd selection quandary – like who bats at No2, No3 or No5 in the Test team – the garden was looking so rosy. The side have won both series Georgios Papagiannis Womens Jersey this summer and West Indies have been thrashed in a couple of one-day international matches. Thirty years ago a victory against West Indies in any format might have been worthy of a big night out. That is hardly the case now but Ben Stokes was out and about in Bristol on Sunday night with Alex Hales in his wake and something went wrong. Those English roses have wilted rapidly in the past 24 hours.So what is the fallout? That depends partly on the investigations of the Avon and Somerset police. Whatever the outcome it is not good news that England’s vice-captain has been arrested. The timing of such an incident is never going to be convenient but the breaking of this news came on the day the selectors were meeting to pick their squad for Australia.
Of course Stokes will be in it and he will presumably be retained as vice‑captain since he has not been found guilty of anything. Moreover the selectors were instructed by Andrew Strauss, the England cricket director, to go about their business contemplating only the “form and fitness” of the players in the frame.Ostensibly that is good news for Hales, who would be a borderline selection. However, the cautionary tale of John Morris comes to mind. He was David Gower’s co-pilot during the infamous Tiger Moth flight in Queensland in 1991. While Gower went on to play more Test cricket Morris was never seen again in any format. A peripheral Kings Jersey cricketer Kings Authentic Jersey has Blues Jersey to Blues Authentic Jersey have a more impeccable CV than a superstar. That may not be fair, but that’s life.The best-case scenario for England is that Stokes will be free to tour Australia this winter and that the Bristol incident is soon consigned to the dustbin like the 2013 Walkabout fracas in Birmingham involving David Warner eventually was – although Warner was suspended by Cricket Australia in the immediate aftermath. Warner is now the Australia vice-captain, he does not drink and has acquired the nickname of “Rev”, a sequence of events not yet mirrored precisely by Stokes.
But even the best-case scenario is far from ideal. Australia is a wonderful place to tour; it can also be tricky. For those who like to go out there are attractions galore plus countless mobile phones to record any indiscretions, and any high-profile Pom at a bar generally has to be provoked as a matter of principle. Stokes will have to be on guard from Townsville (perhaps especially in Townsville) to Sydney.We can travel no further without a comparison with Sir Ian Botham, who managed to spend the eve of the 1988 Sheffield Shield final in a Perth prison before taking the field for Queensland the following day. Stokes Brian Sutter Womens Jersey always prompts these comparisons and they are nearly always flattering; these two have much in common as cricketers and characters. Both, I suspect, need to let their hair down now and again, though I can reveal this with more authority in the case of Botham.In the end Botham hit upon a means of survival in Australia. On the 1986-87 tour he created his “batcave”, a substantial suite in the team hotel where he spent convivial evenings with friends and team-mates. He could not risk going out. It would be a shame if Stokes was reduced to a similar arrangement so early in his career. This winter, assuming he makes the trip, he will need to be careful and his mates in the team – and there are plenty of them – will have to keep an eye on him. England’s vice-captain cannot afford any misdemeanour on or off the field.
Hales’s situation is not so serious but very uncomfortable. He has missed an ODI because he “voluntarily” went to Bristol to give evidence to the police, which cannot be a pleasant experience. And despite the instructions of Strauss this incident is hardly likely to enhance his chances of selection for the Ashes tour. On the broader front England may have to address their laissez-faire attitude to team discipline. In the post Andy Flower era the system is essentially one of self-governance, where the players take responsibility for how they behave; they can set their own parameters. This is the best way but after a couple of aberrations it becomes unworkable.Strauss and Trevor Bayliss, who seldom comes across as a natural disciplinarian and whose admiration of Stokes knows few bounds, now have a stern reminder to be on guard once that plane lands in Perth at the end of October.


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