Dhaka, Bangladesh
Stokes admits to thru punches

Stokes admits to thru punches

England cricketer Ben Stokes admitted throwing several punches at a man outside a nightclub in Bristol, a jury has heard, reports BBC. The Durham all-rounder, who denies affray, has taken to the stand for a second day at Bristol Crown Court. Mr Stokes, 27, said: “It’s clear in my statements that I admit to throwing multiple punches.” He is on trial alongside Ryan Ali, 28, who the cricketer is alleged to have knocked out, outside the Mbargo club. Mr Ali has also denied a charge of affray while Ryan Hale, 27, was acquitted of the same charge on Thursday. Mr Stokes told the court he felt “constantly under threat” by Mr Ali and Mr Hale who he claims made homophobic slurs to two gay men, Kai Barry and William O’Connor. But when questioned by the prosecution, he admitted “slapping” but not knocking out Mr Ali or being very drunk. He agreed he had had at least 10 drinks, including pints of beer, vodka and lemonade as well as “a few” Jagerbombs, which are shots usually mixed with energy drinks. Under cross-examination by Mr Ali’s defence counsel, he was questioned whether he had misheard what was being said. But, he maintained Mr Ali and Mr Hale made homophobic comments outside the club in the Clifton triangle area of Bristol during the early hours of 25 September last year. Mr Stokes told the jury he was not “threatening or aggressive” towards the men. “I’d say I was verbally saying ‘I don’t think you should be saying that to these two guys because they’re gay’,” he said. He also said he could not remember the specific homophobic words used. “As I’ve said I can’t recollect anything specific, but I’m very clear the words used were a homophobic nature.” As the prosecution began its cross-examination of the cricketer, the jury was shown CCTV pictures from outside Mbargo, where he was denied entry.

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