England planning for an Ashes series without Ben Stokes, says Joe Root

• Durham all-rounder remains suspended and will not fly out with squad
• ‘We’ve got to approach it as if this is our team going out there for the tour’

Joe Root says England are planning as if they will be without Ben Stokes for the entire Ashes tour. The Durham all-rounder will not fly out with the rest of the squad to Australia on Saturday, having been suspended following an incident outside a Bristol nightclub in September.

The 26-year-old vice-captain remains under investigation after being arrested on suspicion of causing actual bodily harm.

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