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A day after arrest, Ben Stokes makes cut to Joe Root-led England’s Ashes squad

Posted September 27th, 2017, 03:36 PM IST

A day after arrest, Ben Stokes makes cut to Joe Root-led England’s Ashes squad

London: Ben Stokes was included Wednesday in England's 16-man squad for the Ashes series in Australia, two days after the all-rounder was arrested on suspicion of causing actual bodily harm on a night out.

Stokes, who was also retained as vice-captain, was picked for the tour purely on cricketing grounds although he won't be playing in an ODI against West Indies on Wednesday in the wake of the incident early Monday.

He remains under investigation after being released by police.

Three uncapped players – paceman Craig Overton, leg-spinner Mason Crane and wicketkeeper Ben Foakes – were called up to the squad for a tour that starts November 4.

James Vince returned for the first time since August 2016 and fellow batsman Gary Ballance is back after fracturing a finger in a test against South Africa in July, giving them another chance to stake a claim for a place in England's fragile middle order. There was no place in the squad for batsmen Tom Westley and Alex Hales, and bowlers Mark Wood and Toby Roland-Jones.

England, which won the most recent Ashes series in 2015 on home soil, heads to Australia on October 28 and will play three tour matches before a five-Test series.

"A tour of Australia is the ultimate test for our squad," national selector James Whitaker said.

"We have provided (captain) Joe Root and (coach) Trevor Bayliss with a well-balanced squad with options in all areas.

"After a successful summer, having won the test series against South Africa and West Indies, there is real competition for places."

Squad:

Alastair Cook (Essex), Mark Stoneman (Surrey), James Vince (Hampshire), Joe Root (Yorkshire, captain), Dawid Malan (Middlesex), Ben Stokes (Durham), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire, wicketkeeper), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Gary Ballance (Yorkshire), Jake Ball (Nottinghamshire), Craig Overton (Somerset), Mason Crane (Hampshire), Ben Foakes (Surrey, wicketkeeper)

Fixtures:

November 04-05: v Western Australia XI, Perth
November 08-11: v Cricket Australia XI, Adelaide
November 15-18 v Cricket Australia XI, Townsville (d/n)
November 23-27: 1st Test v Australia, Brisbane
December 02-06: 2nd Test v Australia, Adelaide (d/n)
December 09-10: v Cricket Australia XI, Perth
December 14-18: 3rd Test v Australia, Perth
December 26-30 4th Test v Australia, Melbourne
January 04-08: 5th Test v Australia, Sydney

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