England still to decide if Stokes plays in third Test

England have yet to decide if Ben Stokes will make his return to international action in the third Test against India at Trent Bridge later this week.

The all-rounder was acquitted of affray at a trial in Bristol on Tuesday, having missed England’s innings and 159-run win in the second Test at Lord’s last week because it clashed with his court case.

England coach Trevor Bayliss welcomed Stokes’s return to the squad on Thursday.

But neither England nor India are obliged to confirm their XIs until the toss which, weather permitting, should take place before Saturday’s first day in Nottingham.

Given they are 2-0 up in a five-match series, England face a more than usually tricky decision over whether to change a winning side.

Although cleared by the court both Stokes and England team-mate Alex Hales remain subject to a Cricket Discipline Commission investigation.

Stokes was not selected for any of the 2017/18 Ashes in Australia, which England lost 4-0 in his absence while attracting some unwanted off-field headlines regarding player behaviour.

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