Ben Stokes backed by England head coach Chris Silverwood after face-grab photos

Silverwood said he had spoken to the all-rounder and was happy with the explanation given.

By Press Association Published: 10 October 2019 - 7.37pm

Ben Stokes

Chris Silverwood

New England head coach Chris Silverwood has given his backing to Ben Stokes following allegations he and his wife were involved in a physical altercation at the Professional Cricketers’ Association awards.

On Tuesday afternoon, pictures emerged of all-rounder Stokes and his wife Clare appearing to become involved in a physical confrontation during the event at the Roundhouse in Camden.

However, Silverwood, who was announced as Trevor Bayliss’ replacement earlier this week, said he had spoken to the player and was happy with the explanation given in return.

Chris Silverwood has come out in defence of Ben Stokes
Chris Silverwood has come out in defence of Ben Stokes (Bradley Collyer/PA)

“I have spoken to him and, as far as I’m concerned, all the questions have been asked. And it’s done,” he said.

“I mean, I wasn’t there. I’m happy with what I’ve been told, yeah.”

Silverwood did, however, warn it served as a reminder to all players of the publicity they can attract as professional cricketers.

He said: “It’s a lesson for everybody. You know, they are high profile, you’ve got to be careful because innocent things can be taken out of context if you are not careful.”

Stokes played a starring role in England’s maiden World Cup win before repeating his heroics to help salvage an Ashes draw with Australia.

The 28-year-old Durham player was honoured for those achievements by scooping the Reg Hayter Cup at a gala dinner in London on October 3.

After the pictures emerged, Clare Stokes swiftly defended her husband in a Twitter post, which included a photo of her “squishing up” the cricketer’s face as a sign of “affection” as well as one of them together at the awards night and called the report “nonsense”.

The New Zealand-born Stokes responded to his wife’s tweet with a face blowing a kiss emoji, and later gave a statement to the Daily Mirror in response to the allegations, describing them as “totally irresponsible”.

“We have a wonderful relationship and I never tire of saying how lucky I am to be with her,” Stokes said. “We both had a great night at the PCA Awards, ending with us dining out at McDonald’s together.

“To falsify and spread these kind of allegations so willingly is totally irresponsible. The way that this has come across is so far removed from what it was.

“It was a stressful 45 minutes for us when we found out, but we wanted to address it as quickly as we could.”