New boy Kumar Sangakkara will make his debut for Durham against Yorkshire at the Emirates Durham ICG in the round of LV= County Championship games starting tomorrow.
The champions have drawn the opening two fixtures of their defence and will hope the Sri Lankan superstar can provide extra impetus.
A further boost for Durham comes from the availability of Mark Wood, the young paceman having recovered from injury.
The White Rose have cause for optimism themselves due to the returns of Tim Bresnan and Jonny Bairstow.
Club captain Andrew Gale, having dropped himself for the dramatic loss to Middlesex, is also in the Yorkshire squad.
However, Joe Root and the in-form Gary Ballance miss out as they will link up with England ahead of their Royal London one-day international versus Scotland.
Sussex will be without Matt Prior, skipper Ed Joyce and Chris Jordan when they face Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford.
Prior has made just one appearance this season, in which he struck a superb century, and continues to be sidelined with an Achilles injury.
Joyce, who has struck 379 runs in five championship innings this term, is on international duty with Ireland, while Jordan will be on England duty. Chris Nash returns after a ruptured appendix to lead Sussex in Joyce's absence.
Lancashire will also be hindered by international absentees after Jos Buttler and James Anderson, who last week claimed 10 wickets in a win over Northamptonshire, were named in Peter Moores’ squad.
Somerset, buoyed by their win over Sussex earlier this week, will tackle a Nottinghamshire side minus Harry Gurney at Taunton.
Warwickshire and Middlesex will also be missing members of their England contingent at Edgbaston.
Chris Woakes and Ian Bell are unavailable for the hosts, while the visiting side will be without Eoin Morgan. Middlesex will also have to replace Tim Murtagh, who is with Ireland’s squad.
LV= County Championship Facts
- The last eight championship meetings between Durham and Yorkshire have produced two wins apiece and four draws.
- Lancashire are unbeaten at Emirates Old Trafford in the championship since the start of 2013 (won two, drawn five).
- Warwickshire have not lost any of their last 15 championship matches against Middlesex (won six, drawn nine).
- The last six championship matches between Somerset and Nottinghamshire have been drawn.
- Against Yorkshire, Middlesex recorded the third-highest successful fourth-innings run-chase in championship history.
- Yorkshire’s defeat against Middlesex ended a 21-match unbeaten run away from home in the championship.