Gower, who played in the last three Tests of the summer against Pakistan, had been critical of the England management in his autobiography, but both sides said that had not influenced the decision.
Two former England captains, Mike Gatting and John Emburey, return after serving bans for touring South Africa, and there is a surprise call-up for Northamptonshire's Paul Taylor.
There was controversy, too, over the selection of the England football squad for tomorrow's friendly against Spain in Santander. The England management admitted the Manchester United midfield player Paul Ince changed his mind about withdrawing with illness when promised a first cap.
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