Kent opener Zak Crawley has been selected in England Lions’ squad to face Australia A at The Spitfire Ground, St. Lawrence starting next weekend.
The Lions have called upon two in-form top order batsmen in Crawley and Warwickshire’s Dom Sibley, who scored 244 against Kent this past week. Both are among four players in-line to make their England Lions debuts against Australia A in the four-day match in Canterbury.
Crawley currently averages 49.00 in his last six innings at his home ground, also topping Kent’s Championship run-scoring charts with 639 in 15 innings at 42.60. His highest score this season of 111 against Nottinghamshire at The Nevill Ground, Tunbridge Wells is his second hundred-plus score this season, after amassing 108 against Warwickshire at Edgbaston in April.
Gloucestershire batsman James Bracey and Sussex seamer Ollie Robinson, who was involved in the Academy system at Kent, are the other two uncapped Lions in the squad, which also contains three players with Test match experience – Ben Foakes, Sam Curran and Jack Leach.
Robinson is joined by the only seamer with more Specsavers County Championship wickets than him this year in Lewis Gregory. The Somerset all-rounder has been in fine form all season, with his 44 first-class wickets costing just 12 runs apiece, and a batting average of 34 for the Championship leaders.
Warwickshire batsman Sam Hain and Surrey all-rounder Sam Curran will join the England Lions squad for the match against Australia A, as injury replacements for Ben Duckett (groin) and Saqib Mahmood (abdominal).
Lewis Gregory will captain the side for the match.
Lions Head Coach, Andy Flower, said: “We’re really looking forward to a great challenge against a very experienced Australia A side, some of whom will be looking to stake a claim for Ashes selection.
“We’ve got a very good squad of players travelling with us to Canterbury; one that’s more than capable of delivering a positive result.
“Lions selection is always tricky. We’ve got an eye on the England team’s short-term needs ahead of a busy winter schedule, but we’re looking at some medium- and long-term prospects as well. We also need to respect the counties’ needs during this busy time in the domestic season.
“While some players will be playing at this level for the first time, there is plenty of experience in our squad too. This will be a great learning opportunity for all these players and a chance to test themselves against a strong opposition.”
England Lions squad in full
- James Bracey (Gloucestershire)
- Sam Curran (Surrey)
- Zak Crawley (Kent)
- Ben Foakes (Surrey)
- Lewis Gregory (Somerset)
- Sam Hain (Warwickshire)
- Jack Leach (Somerset)
- Saqib Mahmood (Lancashire)
- Sam Northeast (Hampshire)
- Jamie Porter (Essex)
- Ollie Robinson (Sussex)
- Dom Sibley (Warwickshire)