The injured England captain, Michael Vaughan, is still hoping to be fit for selection in next year's triangular one-day series against New Zealand and Australia.
Vaughan has not harboured realistic ambitions of playing any part in the Ashes since he underwent knee surgery in the summer. Andrew Flintoff will captain England instead, but Vaughan has maintained that he could return to the squad in time for the limited-overs series in January which will be England's last chance to fine-tune their World Cup squad.
"I cannot think about playing any part in the Ashes," Vaughan said. "It is a bonus if I do the more realistic goal is the one-dayers that follow. There is a lot of rehab still to go. There are a lot of hurdles to get over. But I hope over the next few weeks I will pick up a bat and start batting."
Vaughan is planning to head to Australia before Christmas to give himself the opportunity of playing some cricket. "The last stage of the rehab will be to get out on the pitch, batting and bowling, and I hope to do that in December," he said. "Then I have to ask the selectors 'Can I play again?'
"I've done some straight-line running but it is the twisting and turning which will be the tough one."
Darren Gough, meanwhile, has been selected for next month's Hong Kong Sixes as he seeks an early comeback from the shin injury which cut short his NatWest Series campaign. He is included in a seven-man squad under the captaincy of Dominic Cork for the event, which takes place on 11 and 12 November.
Also in the squad are Cork's Lancashire team-mates Glen Chapple and 34-year-old Mal Loye, who has been unlucky not to play one-day cricket for England.
The England and Wales Cricket Board has requested compensation from Pakistan for the loss of revenue stemming from the forfeited fourth Test at the Oval in August. The ECB is said to be attempting to claim £800,000 from the Pakistan Cricket Board, but the PCB chairman, Shaharyar Khan, said: "We will contest the claim through our lawyers."
The Australia fast bowler Stuart Clark will miss the Champions Trophy, which starts in India on Saturday, after succumbing to a thigh injury. Clark suffered the injury playing club cricket last weekend and will be out for between four and six weeks. Clark is confident he should still be fit for the Ashes.
West Indies completed their preparations for their defence of the Champions Trophy with a 173-run victory over a Gujarat President's XI in Ahmedabad.