Alex Hales England cricket team
Alex Hales (AFP Photo)

Controversial England batsman Alex Hales will be available for Nottinghamshire for the rest of the white-ball season.

Hales was axed from all England squads, including the provisional 15-man party for this year’s World Cup, after reportedly failing a second test for recreational drugs.

But his English county Nottinghamshire believe it is in the interests of “all concerned” for the batsman to return to playing cricket, starting with Friday’s game against Durham.

“The recent events in relation to Alex Hales have been difficult for everyone involved with Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club,” a statement from the club read on Wednesday.

“Alex’s off-field actions have, at times, fallen way short of the behaviours the club expects from any of its staff.

“Following his withdrawal from all England squads this week, we have met with Alex to express our concerns and to re-iterate that such actions cannot continue.

“The meeting was open, honest and constructive and a way forward was agreed between both parties. Alex has expressed a great deal of regret and contrition for his actions and he has ultimately paid a heavy price.

“He accepts that the position he finds himself in is of his own making. He knows he has a long road back to redeem himself in the eyes of many people, but that now has to be his aim.

“After much deliberation, we believe it’s in the best interests of all concerned for him to get back to playing cricket for Nottinghamshire as quickly as possible.”

Current procedures treat recreational drug alerts as a welfare rather than a disciplinary issue and allow only three individuals – the ECB’s chief medical officer, chief executive Tom Harrison and Ashley Giles, managing director of men’s cricket – to be made aware of the results.

With national selector Ed Smith and head coach Trevor Bayliss among those in the dark, Hales was named in the preliminary World Cup squad earlier this month and invited to a training camp in Cardiff despite being in the midst of a 21-day ban.

After the news broke in the Guardian, and all members of team England were subsequently briefed, the decision was then made to remove Hales from all international squads.

That left the player’s management company “hugely disappointed”, with claims that assurances over his World Cup place were “rendered meaningless”.