London - Ben
Stokes was included in England's 16-man squad for the Ashes tour of
Australia announced on Wednesday despite breaking his hand in the incident
that led to his recent arrest on suspicion of causing actual bodily
Durham all-rounder Stokes was dropped for Wednesday's fourth one-day
international against West Indies at The Oval - the venue for the Ashes
squad announcement - after being arrested early on Monday in Bristol.
That followed England's win in the third ODI in the southwest city on Sunday.
Stokes, 26, remains under investigation after being released without charge.
For the time being, he has retained his position of vice-captain to
Test skipper Joe Root but England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) cricket
director Andrew Strauss told an Oval news conference.
"Ben did have an X-ray yesterday (Tuesday)," said Strauss.
"Early results are that he has got a minor fracture on his right hand," the former England captain added.
"There are obviously more tests that need to be done, but the early
indications are that he should be fit to play a full part in all the
Ashes Test matches."
The injury to Stokes' right hand is believed to have been sustained during a confrontation that left a man in hospital.
A police investigation is unlikely to be concluded before England
leave for Australia on October 28, meaning the incident could hang over
Stokes for the whole tour.
Moreover, Stokes is just one on-field offence away from incurring a
potential two-Test ban under the International Cricket Council's code of
England ODI regular Alex Hales - an Ashes long-shot who did not make
the Test squad - was also left out of Wednesday's match after being
with Stokes on Sunday night.
The pair could be among several England players who face ECB action,
with Strauss saying: "What I am doing is speaking to the players
individually to get their accounts of what went on.
"They may be subject to disciplinary proceedings including Ben,"
explained Strauss, the last England captain to win the Ashes in
Australia in 2010/11.
England's squad contained three uncapped players in 23-year-old
Somerset fast bowler Craig Overton, 20-year-old Hampshire leg-spinner
Mason Crane, who will provide support to Moeen Ali, and Surrey
wicket-keeper Ben Foakes, 24, included as cover for Jonny Bairstow.
Meanwhile there were recalls for middle-order batsmen James Vince and
Gary Ballance despite the pair's struggles during their previous Test
Vince was dropped at the end of the 2016 English season northern
summer following a poor run of seven Tests that saw him post a top score
of 42 in 11 innings against Sri Lanka and Pakistan.
This season Vince is averaging a modest 34.82 in first-class cricket
for Hampshire but England believe his game will be suited to Australian
Ballance only managed 85 runs in two Tests against South Africa at an average of 21.25 before he suffered a fractured finger.
Overton got his chance ahead of the likes of Mark Wood and Steven Finn after taking 43 Championship wickets this season.
Essex batsman Tom Westley, who failed to convince at number three this season, was dropped.
This has been Root's first season as Test captain, with the Yorkshire
batsman overseeing home series wins against South Africa (3-1) and West
But England national selector James Whitaker said: "A tour of Australia is the ultimate test for our squad."
In addition to England coach Trevor Bayliss's regular staff, there
will be some new faces in the Australian's backroom set-up, with former
New Zealand paceman Shane Bond appointed as a fast-bowling consultant.
Bond will fill the gap left by former bowling chief Ottis Gibson's
departure to become the new head coach of South Africa up until the end
of the second Test.
Former England one-day captain Paul Collingwood, Stokes's captain at
Durham, will also take a coaching role during the Test series.
England hold the Ashes after a 3-2 win on home soil in 2015.
But their last tour of Australia saw them suffer a 5-0 Ashes defeat in 2013/14.
The first match in the upcoming five-Test Ashes series is set to start in Brisbane on November 23.
England 16-man squad for the 2017/18 Ashes tour of Australia:
Alastair Cook (Essex), Mark Stoneman (Surrey), James Vince (Hampshire), Joe Root (Yorkshire, captain), Dawid Malan (Middlesex), Ben Stokes (Durham), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire, wkt), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Gary Ballance (Yorkshire), Jake Ball (Nottinghamshire), Craig Overton (Somerset), Mason Crane (Hampshire), Ben Foakes (Surrey, wkt)
November 4-5: v Western Australia XI, Perth
November 8-11: v Cricket Australia XI, Adelaide
November 15-18 v Cricket Australia XI, Townsville (d/n)
November 23-27: 1ST TEST v AUSTRALIA, Brisbane
December 2-06: 2ND TEST v AUSTRALIA, Adelaide (d/n)
December 9-10: v Cricket Australia XI, Perth
December 14-18: 3RD TEST v AUSTRALIA, Perth
December 26-30 4TH TEST v AUSTRALIA, Melbourne
January 4-8: 5TH TEST v AUSTRALIA, Sydney
Note: d/n = day/night