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5th July 2009

Onions named in 13 man squad for first Ashes Test

Graham Onions and Ian Bell have been added to the eleven that drew with Warwickshire in a three-day warm-up game at Edgbaston earlier this week.

Andrew Strauss (capt)    Middlesex
James Anderson              Lancashire
Ian Bell                              Warwickshire
Ravi Bopara                      Essex
Stuart Broad                     Nottinghamshire
Paul Collingwood              Durham
Alastair Cook                    Essex
Andrew Flintoff                Lancashire
Graham Onions                Durham
Monty Panesar                 Northamptonshire
Kevin Pietersen                Hampshire
Matt Prior                         Sussex
Graeme Swann               Nottinghamshire

National Selector, Geoff Miller said: “We were delighted with the way in which the team performed in the warm-up match at Edgbaston and it was very encouraging to see Andrew Flintoff bowl so well on his return to the side.

“We were keen to show consistency in selection and retain the nucleus of the side that performed so well against West Indies in the npower Test series earlier this summer. Graham Onions has made an excellent start to his Test career and gives us a different option when we consider the make-up of our bowling attack and the type of conditions we will encounter.

“Ian Bell has performed well in County cricket this summer and he will act as cover batsman for this Test Match should any of our established batsmen be unavailable through injury.

“There is healthy competition for places in our starting line-up at present and the strong performance by the England Lions against Australia at Worcester demonstrated that we are starting to develop a larger squad of players who can compete effectively with international class players.”