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Dalrymple stars for Academy

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Michael Vaughan

Michael Vaughan and England's Academy players warm-up © Getty Images

The ECB National Academy went down by 40 runs to a Western Australia 2nd XI despite Middlesex’s Jamie Dalrymple hitting a fine 78 and sharing a seventh-wicket stand of 104 with Ravi Bopara (43) of Essex.

Bopara (3-37) and man-of-the-match Dalrymple (2-27) also starred with the ball after the home side had been put into bat by England captain Robert Key, finishing on 218 for eight from 44 overs - reduced from 50 by rain - thanks to 85 from Scott Meuleman.

England struggled in reply and were 12 for five - including the wicket of the returning Michael Vaughan for a duck - before the innings was resurrected by Dalrymple and Bopara, but they ended short on 178 all-out.

The Academy squad will now revert to their winter physical and technical development programme before another encounter with Western Australia 2nd XI on December 6 at Hale School, Perth.

National Academy director Peter Moores said: “The day had been an excellent competitive exercise, despite England succumbing early in the innings to the seaming ball.

“The performances of Dalrymple, Bopara and (Michael) Yardy in the middle order were significant pluses at the beginning of a winter training programme."

Despite the bulk of media attention being on Michael Vaughan's return to competitive cricket, the rest of the Academy side - in Perth for a winter 'performance camp' and to provide acclimatised cover for the Ashes squad - benefited from getting a match under their belts.

Vaughan came through the match with no adverse reaction in his first competitive outing since undergoing knee surgery.

Moores added: "We know Michael is a quality player and this is the type of all-round match practice he needs as the next phase on his road to full recovery and match fitness."

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