Ben Stokes rejoins England squad after being cleared of affray

Ben Stokes has been found not guilty

Ben Stokes has been found not guilty

Stokes, 27, has insisted he was acting in self-defence when he hit Ryan Ali, 28, and Ryan Hale, 27, after they had abused two gay men near a nightclub in Bristol. The verdict is likely to come forth in the middle of the week after which the Cricket Discipline Commission of the European Central Bank will conduct their own hearing.

In a video seen by the jury, body camera footage from arresting officer PC Stacey Allway showed Stokes handcuffed in a police vehicle, being told: "You're being arrested because of the man in the red with the blood".

Tony Miles, the solicitor for Mr Ali and Mr Hale, said: "Both our clients are delighted it's all over".

The trial at the Bristol Crown Court began on August 6, and saw Stokes being accused of lying to the jury and admitting to have consumed alcohol on the night out which happened to be in the middle of England's home series against Windies.

He said he had not been drunk but admitted he could not remember what had been said.

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

Ali denied that Mr O'Connor and Mr Barry were being "a bit of a nuisance" and he and Mr Hale were getting "irate" with them.

Ben Stokes missed the second Test against India
Ben Stokes missed the second Test against India

And when he intervened, telling the pair: "You shouldn't be taking the piss because they are gay", Stokes said Ali replied: "Shut the **** up or I'll bottle you".

'We're not the finished article - we've got a long way to go to where we want to get to'. "I can hear myself saying "Move away", he said.

"I felt I was going to be attacked". He told police: "Because he was abusing my two friends for being gay".

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

Ali, an emergency services worker, suffered a fractured eye socket while Mr Hale, a former soldier, was left with concussion.

Last week, the jury acquitted Mr Hale of the charge after the judge ruled there was insufficient evidence against him.

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