Ashes: England rocked by new controversy as Ben Duckett suspended after Perth bar incident | Cricket | Sport


Lions opener Ben Duckett was suspended pending an internal disciplinary investigation into an “incident” in the early hours of Thursday night Friday morning.

Duckett had been due to open for the Lions against Cricket Australia XI at Richardson Park today but was replaced in the line up by Joe Clarke.

England remained tight-lipped over precise details of what went on, insisting they will issue a further statement within 24 hours when the outcome of the disciplinary hearing is known.

But it is understood that the incident was confined to the England players themselves although it was not a fight. It did not involve a member of the public or police.

England’s players arrived in Perth on Thursday afternoon but the Lions have been here since Tuesday.

Players from both squads had been given leave to go out with the midnight curfew for the senior players relaxed for the night.

And a number of England’s Test squad, who had earlier enjoyed a quiz night arranged by squad player Gary Ballance, were understood to have gone on to the bar with Duckett and other Lions.

The fact that Andy Flower, coach of the Lions and Trevor Bayliss, head coach of the senior Test side, were meeting this morning to discuss disciplinary sanctions suggests that there were members of both squads involved.

However, at this stage just Duckett’s actions are being investigated by the coaching duo. 

England have been rocked by allegations of a booze culture within the squad with the late night fight in Bristol which saw Ben Stokes arrested in September.

Alex Hales, Jonny Bairstow, Liam Plunkett and Jake Ball were all disciplined for their part in that incident.

Bairstow was also in hot water for his part in the ‘head-butt’ incident with Cameron Bancroft, again in a Perth bar called The Avenue on the first night of the tour.

The fallout from that overshadowed the end of the first Test and led to Andrew Strauss, England’s Director of Cricket, and Bayliss imposing a midnight curfew on the senior squad.

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