This is the controversial image of Ben Stokes allegedly choking his wife that has sparked claims of domestic violence against the Kiwi-born England cricketer.

The photo shows Stokes with his hand around Clare Stokes' face last Wednesday at the Roundhouse in Camden, where the all-rounder had just won the Players' Player of the Year award.

The image shows Stokes' left hand grasped around his wife's neck with his fingers over her jaw and cheek.

Clare has denied Stokes grabbed her but said the pictures were twisted into a 'crazy story'. Photo / BackGrid
Clare has denied Stokes grabbed her but said the pictures were twisted into a 'crazy story'. Photo / BackGrid

She is seen attempting to pull away from Stokes' hand, while her right hand is clenched around his left wrist.

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Clare Stokes has publicly rejected any suggestion of domestic violence taking to Twitter to write: "Unbelievable what nonsense these people will make up!"

She explained Stokes' face grab, claiming it's how the couple shows affection to each other.

"Me and Ben messing about squishing up each other's faces cos that's how we show affection and some pap tries to twist it into a crazy story!

"And all before we then have a romantic McDonald's 20 mins later!"

Clare Stoke's post was accompanied with an image of her slapping Stokes in the face.

England Cricket Board CEO Tom Harrison said in a statement both parties clarified the incident was "innocent" but recognised domestic violence is "serious and real" for millions around the world.

"We have spoken with both Clare and Ben - as well as others in attendance - who have all clarified the innocent context behind the still photographs taken at last week's PCA Awards.

"Whilst it is not the case here, we recognise that for the millions who are impacted by domestic violence, this is a very real and serious issue.''

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Clare Stokes followed up on her original post with an Instagram picture in which she thanked Stokes for arranging a birthday weekend for her and said: "Not gonna let some idiots ruin what's been an incredible 30th birthday."

It's not the first time Stokes has been in the spotlight for controversial behaviour.

Last year he was cleared of affray after jurors accepted he was acting in self-defence during an alcohol-fueled street brawl in 2017.

Watch: Ben Stokes fight video. Video / YouTube

Stokes was walking along a road in Bristol with his teammate Alex Hales when they saw two men being abusive and homophobic to two gay men.

The cricketer took exception to the abuse before one allegedly threatened him with a bottle.

Stokes then launched a barrage of punches at the two men.

Jurors took two hours and 40 minutes to accept evidence that the all-rounder was defending himself during a sustained outbreak of violence which left two men unconscious.

Two years after the Bristol brawl incident, Stokes broke New Zealand hearts when he scored 92 in the World Cup final and led England to glory.

Following his heroics, he was nominated for New Zealander of the year despite representing England.

He, however, turned down the nomination and urged the country to support the Black Caps and Kane Williamson.

"I am proud of my New Zealand and Maori heritage but it would not sit right with me to be nominated for this prestigious award," Stokes told British media.

"There are people who deserve this recognition more and have done a lot more for the country of New Zealand.

"I have helped England lift a World Cup and my life is firmly established in the UK – it has been since I was 12 years old."