Ben Stokes, Alex Hales picked for England tour of Sri Lanka despite ECB charge

Ben Stokes and Alex Hales were named in England’s one-day squad to tour Sri Lanka on Wednesday despite being charged with bringing cricket into disrepute. (AFP)
Updated 19 September 2018
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Ben Stokes, Alex Hales picked for England tour of Sri Lanka despite ECB charge

  • The pair face a disciplinary panel hearing in London in December following a brawl outside a nightclub in the southwestern city of Bristo
  • Stokes, 27, was last month cleared of affray following a seven-day trial related to the incident

LONDON: Ben Stokes and Alex Hales were named in England’s one-day squad to tour Sri Lanka on Wednesday despite being charged with bringing cricket into disrepute.
The pair face a disciplinary panel hearing in London in December following a brawl outside a nightclub in the southwestern city of Bristol in September 2017.
Stokes, 27, was last month cleared of affray following a seven-day trial related to the incident. Hales, 29, was with his England teammate during the altercation but was not charged.
Olly Stone has been called into the 16-man squad for the first time as a replacement for Yorkshire’s Liam Plunkett, who is getting married, and will be available again for the last two ODIs of the five-match series.
The first ODI takes place in Dambulla on October 10.


Simona Halep positive despite Dubai defeat by Belinda Bencic

Updated 21 February 2019
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Simona Halep positive despite Dubai defeat by Belinda Bencic

  • Former world No.1 blames three-set loss on tiredness after nine matches in 13 days.
  • Halep has high hopes for the rest of 2019, saying her game is in good shape.

LONDON: Simona Halep is still certain a good year lies in store for her despite losing to Belinda Bencic in the Dubai quarterfinals.
The Romanian former world No. 1 was the favorite to win her second title in the emirate but ran out of steam as her Swiss opponent ran out 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 winner.
It was Halep’s ninth match in just 13 days and she admitted tiredness had caught up with her.
“It was really difficult physically. I was tired,” the world No. 2 said.

Bencic came from a set down to beat the favorite in the last-eight encounter in Dubai. (AFP) 


“After the second set, I felt like I’m getting cramping a little bit. It’s normal. I was sweating a lot.”
While, her fatigue was clear for all to see, Halep was not using it as an excuse, admitting Bencic, who has now beaten her in two of their three matches, was the deserved winner.
“Yeah, she played well. She played very well. In the end, she was a little bit stronger,” the Romanian said.
Having lost in the Qatar final last weekend and failed to make the last-four in Dubai you might think Halep would be disappointed with her Middle East stint. She was, however, far from glum and revealed she is looking forward to landing more titles to add to her collection during the rest of the year.

Cheerio from Halep after her defeat to the Swiss. (AFP) 


“I think were three good weeks. Tough weeks. A lot of tension, a lot of pressure. Also the Fed Cup,” she said.
“I take only positive things. I had great matches. My level is good. Physically also I’m good. But day by day I had to play, so is not easy.
“I’m confident for the next tournaments.”