One of the candidates in the election to succeed Len McCluskey as general secretary of Unite has withdrawn.
Howard Beckett, an assistant general secretary of the union, said he will now support Steve Turner.
His decision means there are now three candidates – Mr Turner, Sharon Graham and Gerard Coyne.
Mr Beckett and Mr Turner said in a joint statement: “Both recognise the vision and strengths of their respective campaigns and Steve Turner recognises the key manifesto commitments and energy generated by Howard’s campaign.
“They will both work to implement a blended manifesto, taking the best ideas from both candidates, when Steve Turner becomes general secretary.
“Howard Beckett will campaign alongside Steve for the next two months to present a joint programme which includes greater support for workplace representatives, important new communications initiatives including Unite TV, upgraded education and training for members, an independent and progressive political voice, and a new structure for the union reflecting the diversity of our nations and regions.”
Voting among Unite members starts next month and the result will be announced in August.