A CRICKETER is standing trial for a second time, accused of raping a woman in his former teammate’s bed.

The retrial of former Worcestershire County Cricketer Alex Hepburn began at Worcester Crown Court yesterday.

The 23-year-old of Portland Street, Diglis, denies two counts of rape in the flat on April 1, 2017.

The rapes are said to have taken place on a mattress in Joe Clarke’s room which was later found with spots of blood from an injury to Hepburn’s knee.

Judge Jim Tindal told the jury of six men and six women that some of them may be aware of the previous trial but said they must try the case on the evidence and bear in mind that previous press reports were a snapshot and not the full picture.

Two people from the jury panel were excused on the grounds they had already formed a view of the case based on previous media reports of the last trial.

Miranda Moore QC, prosecuting, opened the case, telling the jury about the ‘stat game’, a competition to see who could secure the most sexual conquests between Hepburn, Mr Clarke and a third cricketer in the days before the alleged rapes.

She said Mr Clarke had consensual sex with the woman after they returned together from Bushwackers in Worcester.

The prosecution case is that Mr Clarke left the room to be sick in another bathroom, leaving the woman asleep and that she woke to find Hepburn having sex with her, believing it was his teammate ‘being a bit cheeky’. In a video interview she said both men were of similar height and build and that it was ‘pitch black’ in the room. She said sex lasted 15 to 20 minutes and she was enjoying it, only realising it was Hepburn when she ‘clocked his hair’ and noticed his thick Australian accent.

“I was just panicking. I couldn’t believe what had just happened” she said.

The trial continues.