Adelaide, Australia – England cricket stars Stuart Broad, Kevin Pietersen and Jonny Bairstow have been cleared of any wrongdoing after reports of a late-night drinking session at an Adelaide club.
Australian media said the group were at the city's Zhivago club until 3:30 am on Monday, just ahead of Thursday's start of the second Ashes Test.
A Zhivago spokeswoman told the Adelaide Advertiser the group were “extremely friendly” and happy to chat with fans and have their photos taken.
“They were at the club most of the night enjoying a few drinks and the newly renovated venue,” she said.
A patron added to the newspaper: “They were getting stuck in but by no means messy.”
Monday was a rest day for the team following their arrival from Alice Springs, and the England and Wales Cricket Board said it had no issue with the trio's actions.
“They are free to do as they please – they are grown men. There has been no breach of team protocol,” an ECB spokeswoman told reporters.
Paceman Tim Bresnan, who has been recalled to the Ashes squad after battling an injury, denied the drinking session looked bad.
“I don't understand why it should be,” he told reporters.
“They are grown men, they've not broken any rules as far we're concerned.
“We have quite relaxed rules within the team and anyone who breaks those is dealt with accordingly. But they've broken no rules so I don't know why it should be an issue.”
The Sydney Daily Telegraph splashed the story on its front and back pages Tuesday.
“The Poms can't handle a sledge but they sure can handle a drink,” the tabloid said, after England went down to a heavy defeat in the first Test in Brisbane.
It added: “The late-night drinking session is hardly ideal preparation just two days out from the vital second Test at Adelaide Oval.” – Sapa-AFP