Cook - Signings off the menu

Cork not heading to The Riverside after release by Lancashire

Last Updated: 16/08/08 10:04am

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Chanderpaul: Heading off for the ICC Champions Trophy

Chanderpaul: Heading off for the ICC Champions Trophy

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Durham coach Geoff Cook admits the county are unlikely to replace overseas star Shivnarine Chanderpaul when he leaves for international duty.

The West Indies batsman will play just one more match in the LV County Championship before jetting off to prepare for the ICC Champions Trophy in September.

With a tight title race in prospect in the closing weeks of the domestic season, Durham would be without an overseas player for their final four matches.

However, with many of the top players taking part in the one-day tournament in Pakistan, Cook knows it will be tough to fill the sizeable void left by Chanderpaul's departure.

Suitable person

"We've given a lot of thought to it," he said. "But getting a suitable person with the right qualities and the right experience is the hard part.

"It is tough coming in at this stage of the season, even for players of the highest quality, asking them to come in and make a difference.

"With the ICC Champions Trophy and an Australian A tour somewhere too, a lot of the best players are all taken up - so the likelihood is we'll just go ahead with the good young players we've got coming through."

Cook also dismissed reports linking the county with a move for Dominic Cork, who this week was told he will not be offered a new deal by Lancashire.

Options

The former England seamer has been rumoured to be heading to The Riverside but with Steve Harmison, Liam Plunkett, Graham Onions, Mark Davies and Callum Thorp on their books, Durham do not need another bowling option.

"We've got a group of young bowlers - Onions and Davies, Plunkett - so we've got plenty of those guys," Cook added.

Durham are a point behind current leaders Nottinghamshire in the Division One table but with a game in hand after the clash between the top two was rained off this week without a single ball bowled.

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