Stokes no-ball controversy spices up second day of Ashes

Brisbane (Australia) (AFP) – England's star all-rounder Ben Stokes was at the centre of a no-ball drama in the first Ashes Test on Thursday at the Gabba.


David Warner was on 17 when Stokes bowled him, only for the Australian opener to be given a reprieve by the TV umpire because Stokes had overstepped.

It was a potential turning point on day two as Warner went on to make 94 and the hosts tightened their grip on the match in Brisbane.

Television replays later showed that Stokes had also overstepped on the first three balls of his over, but nothing was called.

That led to speculation that had he been called earlier by the umpires, he would have adjusted his run-up and Warner's prized wicket -- on Stokes's fourth delivery -- may have stood.

"If he had been called for a no-ball the first one he bowled, then of course he's going to drag his foot back," former Australia captain Ricky Ponting said on TV's Channel 7.

Cricket Australia later released a statement saying the technology that TV umpires use to help check no-balls was not working.

"In recent years the third umpire has called no-balls with the aid of technology for officially sanctioned ICC matches," CA said in the statement.

"Unfortunately, that technology is not working in this match and is unavailable.

"The officials have reverted back to using the old protocols/playing conditions whereby the on-field umpires will call no-balls when identified, and the third umpire can check no-balls, but only at the fall of a wicket.

"Work is ongoing to have the no-ball technology available again as soon as possible."