Robinson and colleagues released by Essex

Essex County Cricket Club has confirmed it will not be renewing the contracts of five players for 2004. Darren Robinson, Nick Denning, Joseph Grant, Andrew McGarry and Barry Hyam will all be released at the end of the season. A decision on the renewal of Andy Clarke's contract has been deferred until after the final round of matches.

"This is always a sad time of the year when certain players are not retained," said Essex's chief executive, David East. "But our cricket committee made the difficult decision not to renew a number of contracts at its recent meeting.

"The club should like to wish them every success in their future careers, particularly Barry Hyam and Darren Robinson who have made a significant contribution in their many years with the Club."