YORKSHIRE all-rounder Tim Bresnan has been an unexpected opportunity to further his push to regain an England place.
The 24-year-old Pontefract-born seamer has been called into the MCC side for the cricket season-opening match against the champion county Durham today.
Bresnan replaces Steve Finn of Middlesex and will hope to impress the watching England selectors in an MCC team captained by Robert Key and filled with players vying for an international call-up.
Included in Key’s side are Yorkshire’s 21-year-old spinner Adil Rashid, who will be hoping to catch the eye after not featuring in a single game in England’s winter tour to the Caribbean.
And also looking to possibly win a return to the international stage is former England skipper Michael Vaughan.
Vaughan hit 29 in Yorkshire’s pre-season one-day clash with Lancashire on Tuesday.
The Tykes won the game by 13 runs, Anthony McGrath top scoring with 88, but the call up of Bresnan will see Yorkshire reshuffle their squad for today’s second pre-season Roses clash at Old Trafford with James Lee and Michael Chadwick in the squad and likely to step up.
Finn has pulled out of the fixture as a precautionary measure after landing awkwardly on his right ankle in a Middlesex practice match against Sussex at Hove.
Angus Fraser, Middlesex’s director of cricket, said: “After leaving the field in discomfort last Thursday, we had hoped Steve’s ankle would have settled down after three days of rest.
“He bowled on Monday and it hadn’t improved as much as we’d hoped and therefore we couldn’t guarantee that he would get through the MCC game.
“It would not be in anyone’s interests for Steve to push things at this stage of the season.”
Durham will begin their defence of their LV County Championship title without an overseas player.
Last year the north-east county claimed the only championship title in their 16-year first-class history, pipping Nottinghamshire in the last round of matches.
World number one Test batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul will not link up with Durham until the end of June, following West Indies’ tour of England and the ICC World Twenty20.
MCC: Robert Key (Kent, cpt), Stephen Moore (Worcestershire), Michael Vaughan (Yorkshire), Ian Bell (Warwickshire), Tom Westley (Durham UCCE), James Foster (Essex), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Kabir Ali (Worcestershire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Tim Bresnan (Yorkshire), Sajid Mahmood (Lancashire).