Ben Stokes pleads not guilty, faces trial next month for alleged altercation outside Bristol nightclub

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Associated Press

England cricketer Ben Stokes will face a trial over an altercation outside a nightclub but he will resume his international playing career before then.

The England all-rounder has generated plenty of attention since touching down in New Zealand.
Source: 1 NEWS

The 26-year-old allrounder, who missed the Ashes against Australia last year after being suspended from playing for England, pleaded not guilty overnight to brawling along with two other men after a match in September.

The not-guilty plea at Bristol Magistrates' Court enabled the England and Wales Cricket Board to announce that Stoke would travel to New Zealand today to join the touring squad.

The altercation in Bristol unfolded during the early hours of September 25 local time, hours after England played a one-day international against the West Indies in the city in southwest England.

It is alleged a 27-year-old man suffered a fractured eye socket in the incident.

Stokes is accused of affray and using or threatening unlawful violence toward another.

The charge states that his "conduct was such as would cause a person of reasonable firmness present at the scene to fear for his personal safety".

The other two defendants face the same charge, and also entered not guilty pleas.

The first hearing in the trial was scheduled for March 12.

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