Ben Stokes is in line to play in the third Test against India after being recalled to the squad following his acquittal on a charge of affray on Tuesday.
The 27-year-old all-rounder, who took six wickets in the first Test victory over India but missed the second Test due to the trial, was found not guilty by a unanimous decision by the jury in Bristol after less than three hours of deliberations.
“Ben Stokes will now join the England squad for the third Test against India, which starts at Trent Bridge on Saturday,” read the statement from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).
However, Stokes and team-mate Alex Hales – who was with him when the brawl took place outside the club in Bristol, southwest England, on September 25 last year but was not charged – could still face bans.
“Now that the legal proceedings have concluded, the disciplinary process for Ben Stokes and Alex Hales can be scheduled by the Cricket Discipline Commission (CDC),” the ECB added in their statement.
Meanwhile, India would have received a boost with news of Jasprit Bumrah being declared fit for the third Test at Nottingham. Bumrah, who underwent surgery on his left thumb and went back to India for rehab before being called back for the Test series, was seen bowling in the nets.
The Indian team management was waiting for Bumrah to recover completely and for his plaster cast to come off. At Lord’s, he was seen bowling without the cast and it is thus believed that the 24-year-old has been passed fit to play in the upcoming game.