Bob Woolmer, the Warwickshire coach, believes his side must "play out of their skins" to compensate for the absence of Nick Knight, Ed Giddins and Allan Donald in the County Championship Second Division match against Essex at Edgbaston, which starts today.
Knight and Giddins are in the England squad to face Zimbabwe in the first Test at Lord's which starts tomorrow and Donald, the South African pace bowler, is likely to be out of action for another month with the rib injury he sustained falling into Hampshire's boundary boards on 1 May. "We always expect a tough game. But we have lost Knight, Giddins and Donald, so we will have to be at the top of our game and play out of our skins," Woolmer said.
Essex have included Andrew McGarry, the 17-year old medium-fast bowler, in their squad for the game. The sports science student is hoping to make his Championship debut after taking wickets against Sri Lanka in a tour match last year.
Yorkshire are without Ryan Sidebottom who has a groin injury and Chris Silverwood who has a heel problem for their match with Derbyshire at Derby, where the visitors will be hoping to go clear at the top of the First Division. Richard Blakey, the Yorkshire wicketkeeper, is expected to play despite a finger injury, but Simon Guy has travelled in case he fails a fitness test.
Derbyshire's Tim Munton will play after recovering from severe arm bruising, and the captain Dominic Cork is over the knee problem that has kept him out of recent action.
Vince Wells, Leicestershire's captain, is hoping to be fit to face troubled Hampshire after a rib injury. James Ormond is hampered by a side injury, so Scott Boswell is on stand-by. Adrian Aymes, the Hampshire wicketkeeper, is hoping to be fit for the trip to Grace Road after injury.
Gloucestershire travel to Trent Bridge to play Nottinghamshire with Mike Smith fit after a back strain, while Jeremy Snape is over a groin injury.
In Pakistan, Imran Khan has called for the judicial report on match-fixing allegations to be published immediately - claiming that any delay would further damage the country's image. Imran claimed the report of judge Malik Abdul Qayyum, who concluded a year-long probe in September last year, should have been made public months ago.
"It [the delay] has and is damaging Pakistan's cricket image and has given a chance to others to hurl anything they want at Pakistan."
Pakistani are currently playing in the West Indies and Imran believe they "are disturbed" by the speculation about the contents of the report. "Had the report come out when Hansie Cronje's case surfaced it might have formed a good image for Pakistan that here is one country which has done a comprehensive inquiry," he said.
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