• Sober Stokes Jetting to New Zealand for ODIs Against Black Caps

    Justice may be blind, but that vision challenge functions as an impediment to her speed.

    Pom cricketer Ben Stokes was arrested for his role in a pub brawl in Bristol back in September of 2017. His day in the Bristol Crown Court has been set for March 12, which by our reckoning is no less than five months.

    British juris prudence is such that Stokes will not have to be present to face the charge of affray, so the 26-year-old all-rounder will meet up with some teammates in New Zealand on Friday for a one-day international series against the Black Caps. That series begins in Hamilton of February 25, so Stokes will have one or several opportunities to sample the nightlife in New Zealand, although he hopefully knows better than to get into a rort with any inebriated Kiwis, lest he risk missing the ODIs for medical reasons.

    A spokesperson for the England and Wales Cricket Board said, “Having entered his plea at Bristol Magistrates Court today, Ben Stokes will now travel to New Zealand to join the England squad. He departs tomorrow, Wednesday 14 February, and will arrive on Friday 16 February, ready to train with England teammates in Hamilton.Any decision to include him in upcoming matches will be made by head coach Trevor Bayliss and the England management team.”

    If we had to foot the bill for Stokes’ plane fare, we would play him.

    Stokes had to make an appearance in the Magistrates Court to confirm his identity and address. One would think he could have done that by simply sending in a copy of his drivers’ license, given that he does not actually have to show up for the court date in March.

    It is delicious to speculate that Stokes, when he got into his public fighting exhibition, was looking for an easy way out of appearing for the Ashes whitewash the Aussies laid on the Poms.

    Stokes had the help of two mates in the bar brawl, Ryan “No Relation to Muhammad) Ali and Ryan Hale.

    Stokes may want to consider limiting his association with anyone named Ryan.