Ben Stokes and Matt Coles sent home for poor behaviour


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The Independent Online

Two players have been sent home early from the England Lions tour of Australia for unprofessional conduct. Ben Stokes of Durham and Matt Coles of Kent had already been warned in writing about their off-field behaviour before the decision was taken to cut their tour short.

David Parsons, the Lions performance director, said: "On a very challenging tour to Australia, both Matt and Ben have ignored the instructions given to them around their match preparation and recovery and, following previous warnings, it is regrettable that it has been necessary to terminate their involvement in the tour."

The tour has been disastrous for the Lions so far with all five matches – three against Victoria and two against Australia A – being easily lost.

Stokes, a richly promising all-rounder who has played five one-day internationals for the senior England team, and fast bowler Coles were not alone in failing to make an impression.

However, their behaviour beggars belief considering that the England coach, Andy Flower, has been travelling with the Lions squad recently. Both players have issued apologies but the latest incident will do nothing to quash Stokes's bad boy image. In late 2011 he was arrested and cautioned for obstructing police.