Hampshire are set to begin the season season without FOUR key players.

The Hawks are already without Michael Carberry until mid-May and Chris Tremlett is unavailable for the forseeable future with a back injury he suffered while on duty with England during the Commonwealth Bank Series.

But Carberry (knee) and Tremlett (back) have now been joined in the treatment room by Sean Ervine and Dimitri Mascarenhas.

After undergoing scans yesterday, it was confirmed that Mascarenhas is doubtful with a heel injury, while Ervine has a shin problem and is expected to miss tomorrow's opener against Middlesex at the Rose Bowl.

Hampshire are remaining tight-lipped over the seriousness of the injuries and last night Paul Terry was not in a position to name the squad for the opening game of 2007 - a Friends Provident Trophy (formerly sponsored by C& G) southern conference match.

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