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Duckett suspended from remaining Lions fixtures in Australia

Ben Duckett was fined and given a final warning over his conduct but escaped being sent home early from the Lions tour of Australia

Getty Images

Getty Images

Ben Duckett has been suspended from all remaining fixtures on England Lions' tour of Australia and given a final written warning over his conduct. He was also fined the maximum allowable amount for an England Lions player, which ESPNcricinfo understands is close to £1500. But the 23-year-old escaped being sent home early.
Duckett was due to play for England XI in Perth over the weekend but was suspended following a report that he poured a drink over James Anderson in a bar in the early hours of Friday morning. Joe Clarke took his place in the England XI.
While the matter was described as "fairly trivial" by the England coach Trevor Bayliss, it came at a time when the England camp was under increased scrutiny following a couple of previous alcohol-related episodes. As a result, all the players had been warned about their conduct and an extremely dim view was taken of actions that might, a generation or so ago, have been dismissed as light-hearted fun.
Crucially, this whole Ashes tour has been overshadowed by the arrest of Ben Stokes in September. Ever since that moment, the England camp has been under the microscope with allegations of out-of-control players and a drinking culture never far away.
And while the England management remains confident that the vast majority of the squad is disciplined and focused, there is huge frustration that some foolish moments from the likes of Jonny Bairstow and Duckett should serve to fuel the fire for those who want to suggest otherwise.
Duckett, who played four Tests for England towards the end of 2016, may well have been somewhat unfortunate. But as the ECB seeks to ensure the image of the game is attractive to a family audience and in light of his past history (he lost the England Under-19 captaincy due to fitness issues and then missed a Northants pre-season tour for similar reasons), Duckett might reflect on whether he has embraced the level of sacrifice and discipline inherent in the life of an international sportsperson.
He and other players, some of them in the current England side, will be left in no doubt that any further indiscretions - however "trivial" they may seem - are likely to cost them their international careers. It will also be interesting to see if Duckett, a hugely talented batsman who in 2016 became the first man to win both the PCA's Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year in the same season, makes the England Lions squad for their Caribbean tour in the new year.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo