I have only heard "the bench" used to refer to the area presided over by a judge/justice.
As in the phrase "may I approach the bench?"
approach the bench legal definition of approach the bench. approach the bench synonyms by the Free Online Law Dictionary.
I am not sure why you are referring to the "bench" of a particular case. Or how the media would give "space" to the "bench." This is not AmE.
In any event, there is only one bench associated with any given judge, so it would be "the" bench.
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