Perth, December 7: Suspended all-rounder Ben Stokes was included on Thursday in England's squad for their one-day series against Australia, with coach Trevor Bayliss bracing for "a circus" if he is cleared to play.
Stokes is currently banned from international cricket while British authorities probe his alleged involvement in a late-night fight outside a Bristol nightclub, and it remained in doubt whether he would play.
Bayliss admitted Stokes' potential appearance in Australia could be a distraction for the team.
"Whenever he comes back that's going to be a bit of a circus for sure," he told reporters.
"Whether it's any more of a circus than it's already been, it's hard to say. If it happens, let's just get on with it and take it on the chin."
He added: "We've got to adjust to that at some stage."
In his first limited overs match for his birth province against Otago, he was bowled for two. He did better against Auckland on Wednesday, hitting 34 from 41 deliveries as he shakes off the rust.
"I've got absolutely no idea. Still waiting for the police report," said Bayliss when asked if he expected Stokes to play in the Ashes.
The England Cricket Board said in their statement Thursday that once they receive formal confirmation on whether Stokes has been charged or not, they would meet within 48 hours to decide the next step.
Hales, an opener who has not played any professional cricket since the September nightclub incident, learned this week that he will face no criminal charges, opening the door for his trip to Australia.