Stokes: “I am relieved to get back to playing the game I love without this hanging over me.”
By Sky Sports News
Last Updated: 07/12/18 5:42pm
Ben Stokes and Alex Hales remain eligible for England selection but have both been fined following a Cricket Discipline Commission (CDC) hearing.
The pair attended hearings on Wednesday and Friday for their involvement in an incident outside a Bristol nightclub in September 2017.
Both players accepted the charges of breaching ECB rules, and the three-man CDC panel imposed an eight-match ban on Stokes, which he has already served.
Stokes has also been fined £30,000, half of which should be paid to a charity or charities.
In response to CDC’s decision, Stokes, said: “I have already apologised to my team-mates, coaches and support staff for the consequences of my actions in Bristol.
“I regret the incident ever happened and I apologise to England supporters and to the public for bringing the game into disrepute.
“Cricket and family are my life. The incident has been a huge burden for the last 15 months.
“I am relieved to get back to playing the game I love without this hanging over me. Although the disciplinary process is now over, I have learned lessons that will stay with me for much longer.”
Meanwhile, Hales received a six-match ban, but has already missed two of those matches with the remaining four suspended for 12 months from the date of the hearing.
Hales was fined a total of £17,500, of which £10,000 is suspended. One condition of the suspension states that Hales must undertake appropriate training as approved by the ECB, or else the suspended elements of the penalty will be imposed.
Hales said in a statement: “I am relieved today’s decision by the CDC means this chapter is now closed and I can move on with my career.
“There is no doubt I fell below the high standards expected of an international sportsman and that was the reason for my decision to admit the charges and accept the punishment handed down.
“More than anything, I sincerely apologise for putting myself in a position which allowed there very regrettable incidents to happen.
“Now all I want to do is concentrate on cricket … The next year is obviously an important one for England. I would love to be part of the squad that wins the World Cup in front of our own fans and I will be doing everything in my power to make that dream come true.”
All-rounder Stokes, 27, was found not guilty of affray following a trial at Bristol Crown Court earlier this year while batsman Hales, 29, was not charged by police.