The Northampton scrum-half Dawson yesterday leapfrogged Wasps rival Andy Gomarsall following his sparkling performance that helped the Lions to an unforgettable 25-16 victory over world champions South Africa.
England's entire 21-strong Lions contingent have accepted invitations for the July 12 game. It means that just six players - the captain Phil de Glanville, Adedayo Adebayo, Alex King, Darren Garforth, Phil Greening and Ben Clarke - will fly out from Heathrow on Thursday week.
The Lions group travel from Johannesburg after the July 5 third Test, although their captain, Martin Johnson, has yet to make a final decision. The Leicester lock may opt to rest a niggling groin problem, putting Nigel Redman on stand-by for his 20th cap.
Newcastle wing John Bentley's impressive Lions form is rewarded with a place ahead of Bath flier Jon Sleightholme, while Gomarsall misses out behind Dawson, Kyran Bracken and Austin Healey.
Eleven players have been omitted from England's original 38-man squad. They are Sleightholme, Gomarsall, Nick Greenstock, Paul Grayson, Mark Mapletoft, Kevin Yates, Richard Cockerill, Martin Haag, Danny Grewcock, Martin Corry and Chris Sheasby.
Gomarsall is not the only Argentina tourist who misses out - England's midfield riches accounting for Wasps centre Nick Greenstock, front row resources freezing out Kevin Yates and Bristol captain Martin Corry an unlucky back row casualty.
The English Lions will leave Johannesburg on July 7, and because of third Test injury risks, England's 21 will not be finalised until everyone arrives in Sydney.
ENGLAND SQUAD (England squad, v Australia, Sydney, 12 July): T Stimpson (Newcastle), N Beal (Northampton), T Underwood (Newcastle), J Bentley (Newcastle), A Adebayo (Bath), P de Glanville (Bath, capt), W Greenwood (Leicester), J Guscott (Bath), M Catt (Bath), A King (Wasps), K Bracken (Saracens), A Healey (Leicester), M Dawson (Northampton); G Rowntree (Leicester), D Garforth (Leicester), J Leonard (Harlequins), M Regan (Bristol), P Greening (Gloucester), M Johnson (Leicester), S Shaw (Wasps), N Redman (Bath), L Dallaglio (Wasps), B Clarke (Richmond), R Hill (Saracens), N Back (Leicester), T Rodber (Northampton), T Diprose (Saracens).
Two more players have left Gloucester, bringing the number of departures in just one week to 11. The scrum-half Charlie Mulraine is moving to Moseley and the lock Nick Yelland is returning to Cornwall to join Penzance.Reuse content