Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98
James Bracey and Haseeb Hameed will be given the chance to stake their case for inclusion in England's Test squad after being named in a County Select XI to play India in a three-day match at Chester-le-Street next week.
Bracey did not make an impact in his maiden Test series against New Zealand in June, making scores of 0, 0 and 8 and struggling with the gloves as a stand-in wicketkeeper following Ben Foakes' injury. But he has been around the England squad for the last year and remains under consideration as a back-up top-order batter, not least with Ollie Pope an injury doubt for the first Test against India.
Hameed, meanwhile, has not played Test cricket since his maiden series against India in 2016-17, when he made 219 runs in six innings as a 19-year-old opener. His form nosedived over the next three seasons playing for Lancashire, but he has been much more successful since joining Nottinghamshire ahead of the 2020 season, where he has averaged 42.43 in first-class cricket. He was an unused squad member for the New Zealand series.
The 14-man squad will be captained by Warwickshire's Will Rhodes, and is comprised of players who were not signed for the inaugural season of the Hundred and were made available by their counties. The three Warwickshire players involved will miss the opening game of the Royal London Cup against Hampshire. According to an ECB statement, the squad will "bridge into a team environment and undergo Covid testing before being cleared to play".
Top-order batters Jake Libby (Worcestershire) and Rob Yates (Warwickshire), Nottinghamshire allrounders Liam Patterson-White and Lyndon James, seamers Ethan Bamber (Middlesex), Zak Chappell (Nottinghamshire) and Craig Miles (Warwickshire), and the Sussex offspinner Jack Carson are all included. There are also three teenagers in the squad who are yet to make their first-class debuts: Leicestershire's Rehan Ahmed, Lancashire's Tom Aspinwall, and Somerset's James Rew.
The County Select XI will be coached by Richard Dawson, England's elite performance pathway coach, and will be staged behind closed doors from July 20-22. The fixture was confirmed on Wednesday night following India's request for a warm-up match ahead of the Test series, which starts on August 4 at Trent Bridge.