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Lewis Gregory to captain England Lions for Australia tour

Lewis Gregory to captain England Lions for Australia tour
© Reuters
Tom Abell and Keaton Jennings will act as deputy for the white-ball and four-day legs of the tour.

Somerset all-rounder Lewis Gregory will captain England Lions on their forthcoming tour of Australia.

Gregory, who made his senior England debut in the Twenty20 series in New Zealand at the back end of last year, is set to lead the Lions in five 50-over matches and three four-day games.

Somerset team-mate Tom Abell has been named vice-captain for the white-ball part of the series while Lancashire opener Keaton Jennings will act as deputy for the four-day games.

Moeen Ali continues his exodus from Test cricket
Moeen Ali continues his sabbatical from Test cricket (Nick Potts/PA)

Moeen Ali, meanwhile, is visiting the squad at their preparation camp in Loughborough this week alongside former England seamer Tim Bresnan to share their experiences of playing in the challenging conditions of Australia.

Moeen is set to travel to South Africa for the limited-overs portion of England's tour which starts later this month, having opted to continue his sabbatical from the Test team.

But his presence at the National Cricket Performance Centre has been welcomed by England and Wales Cricket Board performance director Mo Bobat, who said: "I'd like to thank Tim and Moeen for their time this week at the camp.

"I'm sure the information and experience they can impart will be very useful to many members of our squad as they look to hone their games to Australian conditions."

Keaton Jennings has been named as vice-captain for the four-day leg and will hope to press claims for an England recall
Keaton Jennings has been named as vice-captain for the four-day leg and will hope to press claims for an England recall (John Walton/PA)

The Lions start their tour on February 2 with the first of three 50-over fixtures against Cricket Australia A before two games against a New South Wales XI. They play the same opponents in four-day matches either side of a day-night contest against Australia A at the MCG.

Gregory, who skippers Somerset in the Vitality Blast, has captained the Lions twice before, most recently in the four-day draw against Australia A in Canterbury last July.

He said: "It's an honour to be chosen to captain the Lions again and I'm looking forward to what will be a great challenge in Australia.

"I can't wait to lead the team out at the iconic MCG against Australia A and try to lay a foundation for future England success Down Under across the whole tour."

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