Harmison looks to the heavens in fitness fight

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The Independent Online

The pace bowler, who is recovering from a shin injury that cut short his tour of India with England, returned to first-class action against Nottinghamshire last week, but did not bowl in the second innings and was overlooked by the national side for the second Test against Sri Lanka.

Martyn Moxon, the Durham coach, said: "We didn't bowl Steve in the second innings just to make sure that he was fit for Sunday's C&G game. We didn't want to take any risks. As it turned out, it was academic because we were rained off on Sunday."

Harmison could face James Kirtley, the former England pace bowler, but Ollie Rayner is overlooked despite making a century against Sri Lanka last week.

In the Second Division, the Australian Phil Jaques, who made an instant impact last week, hitting 107 off 69 balls in the win over Surrey, will make his home debut for Worcestershire against Glamorgan at New Road.

Essex will be without Darren Gough, who has a groin strain, for the match against Gloucestershire at Chelmsford. Andre Adams is doubtful. Gloucestershire are expected to stick to the side that beat Northamptonshire on their last outing.