Ashes 2017-18: Ben Duckett suspended after 'pouring drink over' James Anderson
In what comes as shocking news that runs parallel to England’s already horrid Ashes campaign, Ben Duckett has been provisionally suspended and stood down from the England Lions team for their two-day tour match, following a late night 'drinking' incident in Perth.
Part of the England Lions squad, Duckett was due to play against the Cricket Australia XI team, but has been suspended pending a disciplinary hearing.
The reports are still unclear, but it is being said that Duckett 'poured drinks' over James Anderson after an argument. The England team's security was present when the incident took place, and the police were not summoned.
England's head coach, Trevor Bayliss, met the England Lions coach Andy Flower in Perth and discussed the incident with Duckett. He confirmed the news to reporters thereafter:
“It was after midnight, some of our first team were there which I allowed to happen. We said no curfews that night, let them off and they weren’t breaking any rules from that point of view.
“To be quite honest I think it was fairly trivial but in the current climate, it’s just not acceptable. Everyone’s been warned that even small things can be blown out of all proportion and the ECB have also been quite strict to the boys with their message, so it’s quite simply unacceptable.
“I’m disappointed. It doesn’t matter how trivial it is, in this environment and what we’ve had to go through already with some of these small problems, it’s just not right, not acceptable.”
A midnight curfew had been introduced by Andrew Strauss, the Director of Cricket, who is currently in the UK, but was lifted to allow the players to relax.
The news of the incident comes one day after the team curfew was lifted, following a series of disciplinary incidents in the recent past with the senior team, the most high-profile being that of Ben Stokes.
The England team had a quiz night on Thursday at the team hotel, but joined a few of the England Lions players, who are also in Perth.
Duckett, the 23-year-old Kent born wicketkeeper-batsman, has, to his name, three Test and four ODI caps. His last game for England came against India in December 2016, during the four-match series that England lost.