Ben Stokes NOT GUILTY: England cricketer cleared of affray

England cricketer Ben Stokes leaves Bristol Crown Court where he is on trial accused of affray

Stokes, 27, was accused of knocking unconscious two men, Ryan Ali and Ryan Hale, in a brawl in Bristol, southwest England, last September just hours after he had played in a one-day worldwide against the West Indies.

However, a brief statement issued by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said they would review Stokes's position following the conclusion of the trial, which is expected to end before the third Test starts.

England cricketer Ben Stokes walks out of Bristol Crown Court during a lunch break where he is on trial accused of affray.

Prosecutors allege that Ali used a bottle during the fight, threatening Mr Hales and delivering a glancing blow to the shoulder of Mr Barry.

Stokes had maintained that he had stepped in to defend two men, whom he claimed were the target of homophobic abuse by Ali and Hale, a claim that was denied.

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Ali, an emergency services worker, suffered a fractured eye socket, while Mr Hale, a former soldier, was left with concussion after both were punched by the cricketer in the brawl.

Stokes, of Stockton Road, Castle Eden, Durham, and Ali, of Forest Road, Bristol, each deny a charge of affray.

"So I'll have to sit down with the selection group and think clearly about what's the right squad for that surface at Lord's and then pick accordingly", he had said then.

A third man, Ryan Hale, 27, was acquitted of the charge last Thursday on the directions of the judge, Peter Blair QC.

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