Rahul Dravid’s India A tourists will face an ECB XI in the first match of their England tour at Emerald Headingley on Sunday, as a result of Yorkshire’s progress in the Royal London One-Day Cup.
The Indians, who arrived in London at the weekend and will practise at the Ageas Bowl this week, had been due to play Yorkshire in a 50-over match, one of two county fixtures before a Tri-Series against England Lions and West Indies A which starts in Derby on Friday week (June 22).
But Yorkshire have qualified for the Play-Offs of the Royal London One-Day Cup, and if they win at Essex on Thursday they will earn a semi final against Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl next Monday.
The ECB have therefore agreed with Yorkshire and India to provide alternative opposition at Headingley the previous day – and Jon Lewis, the former England seamer who is now the head coach of the Young Lions programme, will take charge of a team containing some exciting talent.
The 12-man squad was selected from 11 of the 18 first-class counties – excluding the six still involved in the Royal London One-Day Cup and also Warwickshire, who play West Indies A in the opening match of their tour at Edgbaston on Sunday.
It includes five players who were involved on ECB Pathway Programmes last winter and also the North-South Series: Alex Davies, the Lancashire wicketkeeper-batsman who toured with the Lions and played for the North; Zak Chappell and Tom Barber, who trained with the Pace Programme; and Matt Critchley and Delray Rawlins, who received ECB Overseas Placements.
Surrey’s Will Jacks was a member of England’s squad for the ICC Under-19s World Cup in New Zealand earlier this year and has made a number of impressive contributions at first-team level this season, while Gloucestershire’s George Hankins is another former Under-19 international.
Hankins is joined by his county team-mate Ryan Higgins, who has been in excellent form since moving west from Middlesex last winter.
Critchley is joined by his Derbyshire team-mate Ben Slater, a 26-year-old opener from Chesterfield, and Chappell by his Leicestershire team-mate Callum Parkinson, a 21-year-old left-arm spinner whose twin brother Matt has been included in the Lions squad for the Tri-Series.
The squad is completed by two Sussex team-mates of Rawlins who have made a positive impression in the first third of the county season – 23-year-old batsman Harry Finch, and 24-year-old fast bowler Oliver Robinson.
Alex Davies has been appointed captain, and will also keep wicket.
“It’s an exciting-looking squad that we’ve been able to put together at short notice, and a great opportunity for all the lads to make an impression against international opposition,” said Lewis.
Entry to the match will be free, through the St Michael’s Lane entrance only.
ECB XI will be selected from the following 12 – to play India A in a 50-over match at Emerald Headingley, Sunday June 17 (11am start):
Tom Barber – Middlesex
Zak Chappell – Leicestershire
Matt Critchley – Derbyshire
Alex Davies – Lancashire (captain, wicketkeeper)
Harry Finch – Sussex
George Hankins – Gloucestershire
Ryan Higgins – Gloucestershire
Will Jacks – Surrey
Callum Parkinson – Leicestershire
Delray Rawlins – Sussex
Oliver Robinson – Sussex
Ben Slater – Derbyshire