A freak fielding injury has robbed Sussex of one of their key players for today's crucial Championship match against Kent at Canterbury.

Off-spinner Mark Davis, who returned his best match figures for the county when Sussex beat Kent at Hove last week, strained his knee in a corporate six-a-side competition last Friday.

Sussex hope he will be fit for Sunday's totesport League match against Derbyshire, but his absence has opened the way for Luke Wright to make his Championship debut.

Wright, who played a starring role when England under-19s beat Bangladesh last week, will probably get the nod ahead of Michael Yardy.

In Davis's absence, Tony Cottey, fresh from his career-best 5-49 in the totesport League against Somerset on Sunday, will be asked to provide the back-up to Mushtaq Ahmed on a pitch likely to take spin.

Director of cricket Peter Moores said: "It's a shame about Davis, but the injury was just one of those things. Kent have left a bit of grass on the pitch and probably won't want it to turn, but I don't think they'll be able to stop it if the weather stays dry.

"Luke Wright has a good chance of making his debut. He's full of confidence at the moment and deserves his chance."

Kent are worse off injury-wise. England pair Rob Key and Geraint Jones have to rest, Martin Saggers is ruled out by a knee problem and Ian Butler (thigh), Niall O'Brien (tendonitis) and Amjad Khan (hip) all face fitness tests.