England cricket star Ben Stokes shows off giant new tattoo
ENGLAND cricket star Ben Stokes has had a giant tattoo painted on his back of a pride of lions.
The reformed bad boy and father of two had a lion, a lioness and two cubs etched onto his back by artist Mel Blyth to celebrate his family.
The stunning artwork reportedly took 28 hours to complete, but it was worth it for the all-rounder, The Sun reports.
He was over the moon with the end result, which paid tribute to partner Clare and children Layton and Libby.
Stokes captioned a photo of his new look: "Tattoos aren't everybody's taste. But they are mine.
"All my tattoos mean something to me personally and are very special to me. My most resent one represents me, my amazing wife @clarey11 and my 2 wonderful kids.
"We will always be together now when I'm away touring. 28 hours of pain and it's finally finished. @mel_elixirtattoos thank you so much for your amazing work I'm over the moon with it. #family"
At the start of December, Stokes apologised for his part in a Bristol punch-up that threatened his career.
Following a two-day Cricket Disciplinary Commission in London, where both he and teammate Alex Hales pleaded guilty to two counts of bringing the game into disrepute, Stokes was banned for eight matches - all of which have been served, including last winter's Ashes series.
The ink-loving ace was fined $A27,000 over the fight and cleared to play in the 2019 World Cup and Ashes.
Stokes wrote on Twitter: "I have already apologised to my teammates, coaches and support staff for the consequences of my actions in Bristol.
"I regret the incident ever happened and I apologise to England supporters and to the public for bringing the game into disrepute.
"Cricket and family are my life. This incident has been a huge burden for the last 15 months. I'm relieved to get back to playing the game I love without this hanging over me.
"Although the disciplinary process is now over, I have learned lessons that will stay with me for much longer."
Stokes was cleared of affray at Bristol Crown Court in August and Hales faced no criminal charges.
Hales, 29, said: "I'm relieved this chapter is closed and I can move on with my career. I fell below the high standards expected of an international sportsman and that was the reason
for my decision to admit the charges.
"I sincerely apologise for putting myself in a position which allowed these very regrettable incidents to happen.
"I would love to be part of a squad that wins the World Cup in front of our own fans."
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission