Ben Stokes has been named in England's squad for the one-day worldwide series with Australia that follows the Ashes, but his return to the global arena remains subject to the outcome of investigations from the police and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).
Though the 28-year-old's global suspension has been lifted temporarily pending the outcome of Stokes's legal case - both of their cricket disciplinary hearings will not take place until after such time - Trevor Bayliss has said Hales will still have to earn a recall to the XI.
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have given opener Alex Hales the green light to make his comeback after he was cleared by the police in relation to the street brawl outside a nightclub in Bristol in September. "We've got to take a decision now and I just think the best way to go is with the two guys who have taken over".
'We can bring Hales back in and drop one of those guys down, but then it would be someone else upset as well. "If it happens, let's just get on with it and take it on the chin", concluded the English coach.
It is a blow for Hales, who has scored five one-day hundreds since the 2015 World Cup.
"The independent Cricket Discipline Commission [CDC] has stayed the internal disciplinary process for both Alex Hales and Ben Stokes until the conclusion of any potential criminal proceedings relating to the incident". Unlike Hales, he will not tour as things stand.
Stokes is now playing his cricket with Canterbury while a decision is being made. "He has started to hit balls this week and there is only so much you can get indoors banging bowling machine balls", Morgan said. He made 34 from 41 balls and failed to take a scalp as Canterbury fell to a seven-wicket defeat to Auckland on Wednesday. But whenever he comes back, that's going to be a bit of a circus for sure.
Meanwhile the first one-day global between England and Australia takes place on January 15 in Melbourne. It will be decided at the point, if Stokes is to be reinstated to the national team and, if possible, for the remainder of the Ashes series.
Kent batsman Sam Billings and Durham seamer Mark Wood were also included in the squad that defeated West Indies (4-0) earlier this year. There were murmurs within the camp that senior players including Joe Root, Moeen Ali and Bairstow would be rested for the ODIs but Bayliss meant to hold on to the core in preparation for the 2019 World Cup.