Stokes back for England after not guilty verdict

The verdict in Stokes’s trial is expected tomorrow or Wednesday

The couple have waited almost one year for the outcome, after Stokes was charged with affray following the fight outside a Bristol nightclub in September last year.

"This is not part of me seeking to blame someone else", Mr Cole told the jury in his closing speech for Mr Stokes's defence.

During the trial, Stokes was alleged to have lied to the jury, mimicked and bullied two men on account of their homosexuality and acted like a football hooligan.

The ECB will shortly convene a Cricket Discipline Commission, which will consider whether Stokes or Alex Hales, who was also present during the incident, should face any sanction.

Stokes was accused of knocking two men unconscious during a street brawl in Bristol in September 2017 but the jurors found that the English cricketer was acting in self-defense.

However, Stokes and team-mate Alex Hales - who was with him when the brawl took place outside the club in Bristol, southwest England, on September 25 past year but was not charged - could still face bans.

Stokes was cleared on Tuesday at Bristol Crown Court following an incident that took place outside a Bristol nightclub last September.

It was claimed the cricketer, who helped England to victory in the first Test against India this month but missed the second because of the trial, had lost control after drinking heavily earlier in the night.

The jury retired earlier on Tuesday to consider their verdict.

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Prosecutors had told the court that after being refused entry to the Mbargo nightclub, Stokes had abused the doorman and then mocked two openly gay men.

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

Ali suffered a fractured eye socket and Hale was concussed after being punched by Stokes.

Stokes and Ali tussled and fell to the floor and when the sportsman got back to his feet Mr Hale was stood in front of him.

He described his co-accused as "aggressive and violent" towards himself, Mr Hales, Mr Barry and Mr O'Connor and denied he had "overexaggerated the exchange" in order to "justify his own violent behaviour".

"As soon as I see Mr Ali swing the bottle and physically hit them that's when I took the decision to get involved", Stokes said.

"I didn't know, they could be carrying more weapons on them".

Stokes has been left out of England's 13-man squad for the third cricket test against India.

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