Ex-cricketer to face judge

Former Somerset county cricket captain Peter Roebuck is to face a crown court hearing on charges of assaulting three young players.

He told magistrates in Taunton on Thursday that he wanted the case heard before a judge.

Mr Roebuck, 45, of Portland Avenue, Exmouth, Devon, faces three charges of causing actual bodily harm.

He is alleged to have assaulted Keith Jack Whiting, Reginald Leslie Keats and Henk Hendrick Betrus Lindeque with a cane between March and September 1999 in Taunton.

The three men, all from overseas, were aged 18 or 19 at the time.

Mr Roebuck, who wore a blue cricket blazer and a black and white striped tie, declined to indicate whether he would be pleading guilty.

The case was adjourned until 6 September, when a committal hearing is expected.

Mr Roebuck, who now works as a sports journalist, was given conditional bail.