Alastair Cook is really scratching around here, several play-and-misses against Harry Podmore that gets the seamer’s tail up.
The former England skipper knocks him down a peg by flicking one to the rope for his first boundary of the morning.
BBC Hereford & Worcester
blotters, rather than the sun, are out at New Road.
They are soaking up the early morning
downpour that has put the start here back half an hour to 11:30 BST.
their first defeat of the season in the topsy turvy game with Lancashire,
Worcestershire take on another of their Division Two promotion rivals Middlesex, who make their first visit to Worcester in
Copyright: Dan Wheeler BBC Sport
The Pears bring back fit-again England Lions squad fast bowler Josh Tongue for the injured Wayne Parnell (hamstring).
Middlesex, without a win so far, welcome back fit-again captain Dawid Malan, leading wicket-taker Tim Murtagh back from Ireland duty and leg-spinner Nathan Sowter.
Three overs in at Edgbaston and the home side have survived so far with Will Rhodes and Dominic Sibley at the crease. The Surrey seamers trying to send them back to the hutch early are Matt Dunn and Morne Morkel.
That’s the Morne Morkel who has more than 500 international wickets for South Africa.
Today’s first wicket falls in Division Two at Brighton, where Glamorgan won the toss and chose to bat first.
The Welsh outfit’s opener Charlie Hemphrey is trapped lbw by Sussex’s Mir Hamza at the start of the third over.
Forget the World Cup, Harry Podmore takes the shiny new cherry for Kent and his opening over against Nick Browne and Sir Alastair Cook is dispatched for 10 runs.
Browne taking eight of those, the other two to the scorers. Not messing about is he?
The first boundary a cover drive from a Podmore loosener and the second a perfectly timed off-drive. Nice.
You can have your say on any of today’s play via #bbccricket on social media.
Where are you following the action from and who are you backing?
It’s 11:00 so you know what time it is…
PLAY! Day one is off and running. What drama.
No toss at Chelmsford and Kent will bowl first against Essex.
A big boost for Kent is that after missing out on the England World Cup squad, Joe Denly returns to captain the side in the absence of the injured Sam Billings.
Essex have some good news of their own with the return of former England regular Ravi Bopara. Michael Pepper also comes back in to the side.
Kent XI: Crawley, Dickson, Denly (c), Kuhn, Bell-Drummond, Robinson (wk), Mulder, Stevens, Podmore, Milnes, Qayyum.
Essex XI: Browne, Cook, Westley, Lawrence, Bopara, ten Doeschate (c), Pepper (wk), Harmer, Porter, Siddle, Cook.
In the second tier, fifth-placed Northants and bottom side Durham have a rest in this round of games, but all the other eight sides are in action.
The pick of the games arguably sees leaders Lancashire away at third-placed Gloucestershire, while there’s an East Midlands derby between Leicestershire and Derbyshire at Grace Road.
- Gloucestershire v Lancashire
- Leicestershire v Derbyshire
- Sussex v Glamorgan
- Worcestershire v Middlesex
The forecast is pretty good in Leeds today, but timing is everything. Rain was predicted just before the 11:00 start time and hey presto, on come the covers.
This should only be a minor thing though.
One-Day cup winners and Division One leaders Somerset aren’t in action today, but there are three key games starting today, including second-placed Hampshire’s trip to third-placed Yorkshire.
- Essex v Kent
- Warwickshire v Surrey
- Yorkshire v Hampshire
Warwickshire will be batting as Surrey elect for no toss at Edgbaston and to bowl first.
The Bears have lost all three of their matches so far this season after being promoted last season. Things don’t get much easier for them today as they play the champions – here’s the team that’ll try and get some points on the board:
Warwickshire XI: Rhodes, Sibley, Yates, Hain, Banks, Hose, Ambrose, Brookes, Patel, Norwell, Hannon-Dalby
Surrey XI: Burns, Stoneman, Borthwick, Elgar, Foakes, Patel, Jacks, Clarke, Batty, Morkel, Dunn.
Looking at that Surrey line-up you can understand why they’re the title holders. Jason Roy, Tom Curran and Liam Plunkett are all away with England at the World Cup and yet they look so strong.
But to be honest, it’s especially in the batting with Rory Burns, Mark Stoneman, Dean Elgar and Ben Foakes just to name four. Sorry to anyone who didn’t get a name-check.
A couple of changes sees Ryan Patel return and Matt Dunn make his first appearance this season.
Good morning. The Cricket World Cup is now just three days away. Yes, only THREE days.
Before then, as the excitement builds, we have seven County Championship matches coming your way, starting at 11:00 BST this morning.
Here begins nine hours of live text coverage of all the games but, as ever, you can listen to any of the seven matches live right here on the BBC Sport website and app. – simply select your match via the audio tabs above.