Cricket: Lathwell unsure about his England readiness

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MARK LATHWELL may be many people's idea of the type of young batsman England need to revive their fortunes, but the 21-year-old Somerset opener himself is clearly not convinced.

Yesterday Lathwell, who is tipped to be named in England's squad for the third Test against Australia at Nottingham next week, warned Ted Dexter and his fellow selectors not to expect too much of him.

'It may still be too early for me,' Lathwell said. 'I've only been in the game five minutes and I am still learning. I'm not expecting selection for Trent Bridge and I am doing my best to ignore all the media talk. If the chance to play in a Test comes I'll treat it like any other game. I'm not going to let the thought worry me.'

In the light of his experiences in the Texaco Trophy, when he was called up for the squad but left out of the team, Lathwell made it clear that if selected for Trent Bridge he expected to play. 'I would rather have regular cricket with Somerset than be picked by England and not play. I do have ambitions to play at international level, but that is in the future.'

Lathwell is in his second county season and has scored 608 first-class runs this summer at an average of more than 55. On Tuesday he scored a century off 128 balls before lunch during Somerset's NatWest Trophy win over Shropshire at Telford.

A back injury has forced England's Chris Lewis to miss Nottinghamshire's match against Glamorgan at Swansea, which starts today.

Eddie Hemmings, the former England spinner, has been fined an undisclosed sum by Sussex for a newspaper article in which he called for the sacking of Ted Dexter, the chairman of the England Test selectors. He was also severely reprimanded and warned as to his future conduct.