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The travails of Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook in the current county season proves that the championship is still a stern test of abilities, writes Christopher Martin-Jenkins in the Times Online.
So far this season it has produced some interesting, vibrant and, on the smaller grounds at least, well-supported cricket. The England Test players who have missed the party in the Caribbean, notably Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook, have been reminded what a stern school the county circuit still is.
Neither of the established opening pair has found batting easy on pitches inclined to give bowlers just a little bit more help in early season than the Test surfaces of high summer: Strauss has scored 249 runs from his ten innings at an average of 24.9, Cook 155 from six innings at 25.