Stokes off Bal­ance as he loses spon­sor

Sports equip­ment man­u­fac­turer can­cel con­tract after off-field in­ci­dents

Sport360 - - Latest News - By David Cooper @Sport360 edi­to­rial@sport360.com

Ben Stokes has had his con­tract with New Bal­ance ter­mi­nated, the sports equip­ment man­u­fac­turer an­nounced last night.

Stokes was placed un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion by po­lice after be­ing ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of caus­ing ac­tual bod­ily harm fol­low­ing an in­ci­dent out­side a Bris­tol night­club last month.

New Bal­ance said in a state­ment: “New Bal­ance does not con­done be­hav­iour by our global ath­letes that does not match our brand cul­ture and val­ues, and there­fore we have ended our re­la­tion­ship with Ben Stokes, ef­fec­tive Oc­to­ber 11, 2017. We will not pro­vide fur­ther com­ment.”

Stokes was among a num­ber of Eng­land play­ers signed by New Bal­ance in­clud­ing cap­tain Joe Root, bats­man Gary Bal­lance and bowler Mark Wood. The con­tract was re­port­edly worth £200,000 (Dh971,000) a year and pro­vides Stokes with branded equip­ment, from bats to boots.

Ear­lier in the day, Stokes had apol­o­gised to Bri­tish TV per­son­al­ity and for­mer model Katie Price and her dis­abled son Har­vey after a video emerged of the Eng­land all­rounder im­per­son­at­ing the pair.

The video came to light in the wake of the Bris­tol in­ci­dent.

He wrote: “I have writ­ten to both Har­vey and Katie to say sorry and prior to this of­fered to meet in per­son at the end of last month with a view to also get­ting be­hind their pe­ti­tion about on­line bul­ly­ing. I do hope I can put this right.”

It was con­firmed last week that Stokes will not travel with the rest of the Ashes squad on Oc­to­ber 27 un­til his le­gal is­sues are re­solved.

Stokes was ar­rested and held overnight by po­lice but, as yet, has not been charged with any of­fence.

The Eng­land squad are sched­uled to meet at a train­ing camp in Lough­bor­ough next week and it re­mains un­clear if Stokes will be in­vited.

Bad to worse: Ben Stokes is sub­ject of a po­lice and ECB in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

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