England’s Test failures will raise the County Championship’s profile | Rob Smyth

There are 30 or 40 players who could make the first Test against Pakistan and the start of the County Championship on Friday is there chance to stake a claim

The weather is miserable, the football season is approaching the business end – yes, it’s time for hackneyed but well-meaning jokes about the start of the cricket season. The County Championship begins on Friday with some enticing fixtures, including Yorkshire v Essex and Lancashire v Nottinghamshire in Division One. The Spin is so excited that we won’t be able to sit still until we have shared with you, dear reader, our Five Talking Points/Things to Look Forward to This Season. Here they are:

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