Ravi Bopara is due to return to action for England Lions this week, after his last-minute defection from the squad to face South Africa in the ongoing Headingley Test.
Bopara was widely expected to bat at number six for England against the tourists in Leeds but pulled out of contention hours before the selectors announced their squad last weekend, with James Taylor taking his place
The England and Wales Cricket Board cited unspecified "personal reasons" for Bopara's absence, but the ECB announced this evening that 27-year-old Bopara has been added to the Lions squad which will take on Australia A in an intriguing four-day fixture, starting at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
The Australian team contains several players expected to be in England again next summer for the Champions Trophy and Ashes - two campaigns in which Bopara too will still be hoping to be involved.
- Ravi Bopara