Star cricketer Ben Stokes is available to join England squad for the upcoming New Zealand series after pleading not guilty to charges of affray in the court. However, the Three Lions head coach Trevor Bayliss don’t want to rush the all-rounder’s return to the team’s playing XI.
Meanwhile, Stokes will not take part in the remainder of two matches in the ongoing Trans-Tasman tri-nations Twenty20 series.
Moreover, it is likely he will miss the first One-day International against New Zealand in Hamilton on February 25.
Further, Stokes is in line to get in the team for the second ODI in Mount Maunganui on February 28.
Bayliss will not rush Stokes:
Stokes has not played for England for quite some time now. On this note, Bayliss don’t want to rush with Stokes and wants him to give time.
“He hasn’t played for a while so it is not as if we can bring him straight back for these T20s,” Bayliss said to ESPNCricinfo.
“I’d have to say it’s unlikely,” Bayliss said on Stokes availability in the first ODI.
“It’s just up and in the air. We’ll have to wait and see how he is traveling, with the practice. We have got to get him up to speed and hopefully during this one-day series we can get him back into the team,” Bayliss said.
However, Stokes featured in six limited-overs matches for New Zealand domestic side Canterbury. For Bayliss, this won’t make any difference. Also, the decision will depend on his current form.
Missed the services of Ben Stokes:
Bayliss further admitted they missed the services of Stokes despite beating Australia 4-1 in the ODI series. Despite, Bayliss they failed to strike the perfect combination.
“One of the biggest things we’ve missed over the summer has been the combinations we’ve been able to play. Especially in the one-dayers and T20s. We’ve been able to have six bowlers before which gives the captain plenty of different options. We’ve been down to just the five bowlers,” Bayliss maintained.
Stokes’ case has now been referred to Bristol Crown Court. The first hearing will take place on March 12.
The 26-year-old all-rounder will take part in the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) for Rajasthan Royals.
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