Cook in charge of Lions

Stevens rewarded for county form, Trott and Bopara included

Last Updated: 21/06/10 12:57pm

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Cook: Lions captain

Cook: Lions captain

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Alastair Cook will have the chance to press his claims for a one-day recall as captain of England Lions during their triangular series with India A and West Indies A.

"We are pleased to welcome Darren Stevens to the squad, who has been rewarded for his impressive form with Kent this season."
Geoff Miller Quotes of the week

Opening batsman Cook was overlooked for England's squad for the five-match NatWest Series against Australia despite having led his country during their most recent one-day internationals in Bangladesh in February.

Andrew Strauss was rested for that tour but his return, coupled with the emergence of Craig Kieswetter at the top of the order, has left Cook surplus to requirements in the 50-over format.

Instead he will be in charge of a 12-man Lions party for fixtures against the second-strings of India and West Indies from June 28 to July 8.

There is plenty of experience at his disposal, including fellow Test regular Jonathan Trott and Essex all-rounder Ravi Bopara.

The bulk of the squad were involved with the ECB performance programme and the Lions' tour of the Middle East during the winter.

"We have selected a strong squad for what will be a challenging series," said national selectors Geoff Miller.

"We will also consider using non playing members of the England one-day squad throughout the Lions series to give them match practice.

"Alastair Cook will have an opportunity to gain further experience as captain after successful spells as captain with both England and England Lions."

Chance

Kent all-rounder Darren Stevens is a surpise inclusion after making a strong start to the domestic season.

"We are pleased to welcome Darren Stevens to the squad, who has been rewarded for his impressive form with Kent this season," Miller added.

The 34-year-old is one of five players in the squad who are uncapped at full international level, the others being Yorkshire batsman Andrew Gale, Leicestershire batsman James Taylor, Somerset all-rounder Peter Trego and Warwickshire paceman Chris Woakes.

The most notable omission is Sussex wicketkeeper Matt Prior, who is the first-choice in Tests and played 55 one-day internationals before losing his place to Kieswetter.

With Surrey's Steven Davies preferred by the Lions behind the stumps, Prior now appears to have dropped to at least third in the limited-overs pecking order.

England Lions squad: Alastair Cook (capt, Essex), Ravi Bopara (Essex), Steven Davies (Surrey, wkt), Andrew Gale (Yorkshire), Sajid Mahmood (Lancashire), Liam Plunkett (Durham), Darren Stevens (Kent), James Taylor (Leicestershire), James Tredwell (Kent), Peter Trego (Somerset), Jonathan Trott (Warwickshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire)

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