James Anderson is set to return to county action next week with a loan move to Glamorgan. He hasn't played first-class cricket since England's tour of India, but has been named in the Champions Trophy and Ashes squads and England are keen for him to prove his fitness before the winter.
The ECB, to whom Anderson is centrally contracted, has a loan system in place which allows players to move to other counties of they can't find a place in their own team. Usually this is for a minimum of four weeks, but the ECB has the power to amend this in special circumstances.
Jim Cumbes, Lancashire's chief executive, told the club website: "The ECB have discretionary powers which they can use to waive the regulations on loan players. Normally a loan has to be for a minimum of four weeks but this is an unusual case in which everyone wants to co-operate to help England and the player."
Earlier in the week Mike Watkinson, the Lancashire cricket manager, said: "The ECB remain keen for Jimmy to get some cricket in the final week. If that is with us they will be delighted about that, if not then I think they will be looking to create a situation where he can play some cricket. There is a lot of thought and consideration to go into it. If you've got a must-win game, do you play someone who hasn't played for nine months?
"It is something we have to think long and hard about, especially when you don't have any guarantees he is going to go the full duration of the game and keep his fitness. My initial thoughts were that it would be unlikely."
Glamorgan, who face Gloucestershire in a relatively meaningless fixture, have said they are willing to entertain the idea. "We have got to look at the bigger picture. We have been asked and we would be happy to help," Mike Fatkin, their CEO, said. "I think they have chosen our fixture because there are no promotion or relegation issues, although obviously we want to win."