Worcestershire appear to have been handed one potential solution to the increasingly congested queue for batting places by the selection of teenage discovery Steven Davies for England's Under-19 team.

Along with Warwickshire duo Moeen Ali and Nick James, Davies has been selected to play in three oneday internationals against Sri Lanka.

These are scheduled to be played at New Road on Tuesday July 26 before two on successive days at Old Trafford, on Thursday July 28 and Friday 29, both being televised live by Sky Sports.

Moeen and Davies, who will also keep wicket, then go on to appear in three four-day 'Test' matches against the Sri Lankans, the first being at Shenley, starting on August 3, the second at Scarborough, starting on August 9, and the final one at Headingley, starting on August 15.

For most of the England squad, to be skippered by Essex's Varun Chopra and also including Steve Harmison's younger brother Ben, the dilemma between county and country does not apply.

But Davies and Leicestershire's young pace bowler Stuart Broad, son of former England opener Chris, have already made the first-team breakthrough with their respective counties.

Although their clubs still have the ultimate sanction, the players themselves will be allowed to decide. If Davies does go off on England duty it would free an opening place in the Worcestershire side.

After useful innings of 49 and 59 in his two most recent County Championship matches, Davies seems sure to keep his place for Wednesday's Division Two match against Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.

But his likely absence for the three weeks that follow would effectively pave the way for the probable return of Stephen Peters, who appears to have found his touch again after a bout of lost form and injury. Despite the manner in which their three England players, Vikram Solanki, Kabir Ali and Gareth Batty, have been treated in the senior squad during the past six weeks, Worcestershire can be congratulated for their positive manner in responding to Davies's selection.

Mark Newton, the chief executive, said: "There are times when having players called up can be frustrating.

"But our primary role is to support the devlopment of the England team, and we will always support any decisions that are made with regard to our players.

"I haven't yet spoken to Steven as to what he would prefer to do.

"The decision is up to him and we would support him in whatever he thought was the best course of action.

"But, at this stage of his development, having come through the England system like he has, it would be a shame for him if he did not see it through to its fulfilment."

So far, Davies has played in only Championship cricket for Worcestershire so the fact that he would miss three of their totesport League matches seems immaterial.

But he would miss two Championship matches at New Road, against Northamptonshire from August 4 to 7 and against Somerset from August 16 to 19, as well as the three-day tour match against Australia, now confirmed to start on July 30, following Worcestershire's Twenty20 Cup exit.

ENGLAND UNDER-19, one-day squad:

Moeen Ali (Warwickshire), S Broad ( Leicestershire), Varun Chopra (Essex, capt), S Davies (Worcestershire, wkt), J Denly (Kent), B Harmison (Durham), A Harrison (Glamorgan), N James (Warwickshire), K Latouf (Hampshire), M Lawson (Yorkshire), A Miller, S Mullaney, T Smith (all Lancashire) Four-day squad: Moeen Ali, Broad, Varun Chopra (capt), Davies (wkt), Denly, M Footitt (Glamorgan), Harmison, Harrison, Latouf, Lawson, Smith, C Thompson (Surrey).

A century from Stephen Moreton could not prevent Warwickshire slipping to a two-wicket defeat in their penultimate Second XI Trophy match, writes George Dobell. Moreton (100, 97 balls, nine fours and four sixes) helped his side post a respectable 242 for nine from their 50 overs against a strong Somerset side at Taunton.

The 20- year- old legspinning all-rounder who plays for Harborne, oversaw a recovery after a shaky start, adding 112 for the fourth wicket with Moeen Ali (47).

In reply Moeen Ali took three for 47, but Arul Suppiah raced to 83 from just 53 balls to see his side to victory.

Warwickshire can still qualify for the semi-finals if they win their final group game, against Glamorgan at Dorridge next Thursday.