TWO Bolton cricketers have been picked to tour Australia with the England Lions.

Josh Bohannon and Matt Parkinson have been included in a 14-man squad that will shadow the main Ashes touring party in Australia this winter.

Bohannon, who grew up playing his club cricket with Farnworth Social Circle, had an excellent County Championship season with the bat, scoring 853 runs for Lancashire at an average of 53.31 with two centuries to his name.

The second of these centuries (170) came against the Championship’s eventual winners, Warwickshire, towards the end of the season.

This is the first time the 24-year-old has been picked in an England Lions squad, having outlined his international ambitions earlier this year.

He said after his knock against Warwickshire: “I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to play for England - it’s a massive ambition of mine but it’s not something I’m thinking about or worrying about. I’m just in a great place and I’m enjoying cricket so hopefully the results carry on and the cricket will do its thing.”

Former Bolton School pupil Parkinson has also been picked for the tour after another impressive season in all formats. He took 36 wickets this season at an average of 20.55 in the Championship, with many, including Australian legend Shane Warne, calling for him to be picked in the main squad.

Warne said on Sky Sports: “I think Parkinson is very, very good. I really like the look of the way he bowls and he is a great addition to the white-ball cricket, but also I see him playing a huge part in Test cricket, especially in Australia.

“I think of the Australian conditions, the pace he bowls, the amount of bounce and spin he gets, I think he is perfectly suited to Australian conditions.”

Bohannon and Parkinson will join fellow Boltonian Haseeb Hameed who is likely to open the batting for England in Brisbane on December 8 in the first test against Australia.

Calls were also made by former England captain Nasser Hussain and ex-coach David Lloyd for Lancashire team mate Saqib Mahmood to be picked for the main Ashes squad, however, he will also have to settle for a place in the Lions party.

The England Lions will head Down Under on the same day as England’s Test specialists on November 4.