Expect Kevin Pietersen to be named today in England's squad for the first Ashes Test against Australia at Lord's a week today.
The groin strain he picked up at the Oval on Tuesday has apparently cleared but the selectors are still imposing an unnecessary handicap on themselves by making such an early announcement today instead of at the weekend.
It seems the decision was made in order not to cut across Cheltenham & Gloucester sensitivities tomorrow and Saturday when the knock-out quarter-finals are staged, and also coach Duncan Fletcher wants to assemble the players on Sunday. He could do that with a Saturday announcement so it seems the niceties of sponsorship win the day - or lose it.
David Graveney & Co. could delay their final choice until the weekend when they would have a better idea of the fitness of Pietersen and Graham Thorpe, the two contenders for the crucial number five spot. That is the only decision to be made because the other ten places are locked and bolted down.
Marcus Trescothick and Andrew Strauss will open the innings, despite their constant failures in this summer so far dominated by 50-over cricket. Michael Vaughan will be first drop, followed by Warwickshire's Ian Bell who cashed in so impressively against Bangladesh.
Then comes the debating point which has dominated the last five weeks. The old gun-slinger Thorpe and his already-announced retirement after the Ashes series, or Pietersen whose method has split the nation.
In a few months, he has established himself as one of the most destructive batsmen in one-day cricket but can such an unorthodox, leg-side dominated technique possibly succeed against a high-class attack which has worked out how best to tie him down?
It is not clear-cut, with Thorpe's chronic back condition necessitating an epidural before Surrey's last four-day match. He has been short of runs and fitness for most of the summer and could only sit and suffer as Pietersen's 91 off 65 balls at Bristol last month started a tidal wave of public support which seemed impossible to resist.
His 74 at the Oval on Tuesday seemed to clinch the argument but analysis of technique and temperament suggests that he might become a Test batsman but definitely not in the mould of Andrew Flintoff who, as with Ian Botham, would not get into an England side if he did not bowl.
No batsman can slog the world's best bowlers around in five-day cricket - if Pietersen does it, he will be the first.
He showed welcome discipline and application two days ago but his destructive one-day method ? almost entirely leg-side orientated - will never work against Glenn McGrath and Co.
Why has Shane Warne been talking up his Hampshire colleague so much? It is an old Aussie trick to persuade the opposition to pick a player you don't mind seeing come into bat at 50 for three.
England could do no more than beat the opposition they faced in the last 15 months but their top three batsmen all start the series with problems against McGrath and Brett Lee. If they fail again a middle order of Bell, Pietersen, Flintoff and Geraint Jones seems unlikely to generate the sort of 400-plus totals necessary if a Test match is to be won.
Back to the timing of today's announcement. Thorpe is likely to be cleared by the medics and Pietersen's groin strain could clear within days so why not wait until the weekend to give everyone a clearer picture?
Whispers suggest that Pietersen will be preferred and that is a big gamble. It is not like Fletcher to take risks, which makes the announcement today a fascinating one.
If the selectors decide Pietersen plays ahead of Thorpe will they name a cover batsman because of that groin injury? Could it be Thorpe? Chris Tremlett could be picked as cover for a pace attack which, Matthew Hoggard excepted, was slaughtered by Adam Gilchrist at the Oval.