Michael Vaughan warns Ben Stokes after arrest
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Former England skipper Michael Vaughan has sounded a stern warning to Ben Stokes following the latter's arrest yesterday. Stokes was taken in to custody after an incident at a nightclub in Bristol where he allegedly caused bodily harm to an unnamed individual.
Vaughan, in his column for the Telegraph, wrote, "Ben Stokes can’t say he was not warned. I have been privy to private conversations about him recently and he has been given strong warnings about his lifestyle. People have said to him there is only one person who can ruin your career and that is you. He has the talent, the world at his feet."
"He has to understand that if he wants to be a superstar, and go over to India and earn huge IPL contracts, and keep them, he has to be careful off the field. I am not saying be teetotal or not have a flutter at the casino. He needs a way to let off steam and live a life. But on the field he is a streetwise cricketer. He understands the game. He gets cricket. But he is not streetwise off the pitch and that could be his downfall. I am hoping this is his lesson."
The England all-rounder was involved in an incident at the Mbargo club in Bristol, following which he was arrested on the suspicion of causing bodily harm. He was held overnight but subsequently released. Meanwhile, opener Alex Hales stayed back to help with the investigation.
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This is not Stokes' first tryst with controversy. He was previously cautioned for obstructing the police in an investigation in 2012. Soon after, he was sent home from an England Lions tour following repeated late-night drinking sessions despite having received warnings.
In 2014, he broke his hand after punching a locker out of frustration following a poor sequence of scores in a series against West Indies.
Stokes will not feature in the England team for the fourth and fifth ODIs against the Windies, however, he has been named in their Ashes squad to take on Australia beginning later this year.
Stokes is a supremely talented athlete on the field, but Vaughan is right in saying he needs to be smart off it as well. Hopefully the Englishman learns his lesson and puts such incidents behind him once and for all, for it would be a shame to see his career affected by his naivety.