Worcestershire cricketer Alex Hepburn charged with rape

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Alex Hepburn signed a new one-year contract with the Division Two champions last month

Worcestershire county cricketer Alex Hepburn has been charged with two counts of rape.

It relates to an alleged incident in Worcester on 1 April, West Mercia Police said.

The Australia-born all-rounder, 21, is due before magistrates in the city on 7 December.

Worcestershire County Cricket Club said it was also dealing with a disciplinary matter concerning its director of cricket Steve Rhodes.

It declined to comment on reports he failed to inform cricket authorities when Mr Hepburn was arrested.

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Steve Rhodes is also interim head coach of England Young Lions at the Under-19 World Cup

In a statement, the club said: “Worcestershire County Cricket Club can confirm that Alex Hepburn was charged on the 9 November with two counts of rape following an investigation by West Mercia Police into an incident which occurred on Saturday 1 April 2017.

“Hepburn has been suspended on full pay pending further investigation and will next appear at Worcester Magistrates’ Court on 7 December 2017.

“As the matter is now subject to criminal proceedings the club is unable to provide any further comment at this stage.”

The England and Wales Cricket Board has confirmed that Mr Rhodes will no longer coach the England Young Lions in South Africa and during the Under-19 cricket World Cup next year.

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