Warwickshire v Nottinghamshire

Would the real Warwickshire please stand up? That could be the call from the club's supporters today as their team begins the next installment in their Championship campaign against another side who have struggled to fulfil pre-season expectations.

Cricket would not be nearly so entertaining if it were predictable, but the inconsistency of the Warwickshire side this season has been quite maddening.

Their record of four wins and four losses - including victory against the leaders and a loss against lowly Yorkshire - amply demonstrates their fluctuating progress.

For perhaps the first time this season, however, Warwickshire go into the game in form. They have won their last three completed games and the likes of Jimmy Anyon, Ian Westwood, Nick Knight, Paul Harris and Tim Ambrose are starting to look very good.

The victory against Sussex has also relieved much of the pressure. Though relegation remains a possibility, there is now a buffer between the side and the danger zone.

Nottinghamshire will be aiming to narrow that gap. Last year's champions endured an horrendous first half of the season, but climbed out of the relegation positions with victory in the last round against Durham.

Nottinghamshire have been described as 'too good to go down' but so were Surrey last year and, indeed, Yorkshire, relegated the season after winning the Championship. Past performances count for little and Nottinghamshire are in the thick of the trouble.

They remain dangerous, however. Although Warwickshire beat them at Trent Bridge in May, that was before the return of their captain, Stephen Fleming. Though Will Smith and Paul Franks are named in their squad, they are likely to stick with the team that beat Durham last week.

Adam Shantry is named in Warwickshire's Championship squad for the first time - reward for a fine display of swing bowling against West Indies A - though he and Dougie Brown could miss out.

Although Brown bowled a few overs over the weekend for Scotland, there is still some doubt as to whether he is fit enough to come through a four-day game.

If Brown is not risked, Luke Parker will come in in place of the injured Michael Powell. Moeen Ali, withdrawn from England Under-19 duty only to find himself on second XI duty, will be frustrated, though the club plan to release a statement on his future today.

Tony Frost was considered as a specialist batsman, but is not yet fit to keep wicket. He was forced to keep more than intended against West Indies A after the tourists refused Warwickshire's request to field a substitute. He should play for the seconds tomorrow as a batsman.

Knight will continue to bat in the middle order. "There are a couple of reasons," director of cricket Mark Greatbatch said. "Firstly we have to look to the future and 'Knighty' won't be around to open next season. Secondly, he adds solidity and experience to the middleorder."

There is another intriguing backdrop to the game. The club recently sent out a questionnaire to its members with the aim of "reviewing" the membership structure. The message has caused some concern, with many suggesting that the term 'review' is a euphemism for 'raising prices.' In this case, that wouldn't be strictly accurate.

For those supporters who only enjoy championship cricket - and there are a fair few - it could result in a reduction in the cost of their viewing.

There is likely to be a drop in membership next year, however. With no Test and consequently no reduced-price Test tickets, it is increasingly important that the Warwickshire team make the case for membership on the pitch.