FEARS that Keaton Jennings might join the Durham exodus rose yesterday when it emerged that he could follow Paul Coughlin to Trent Bridge.

He is believed to be awaiting confirmation that Nottinghamshire will be promoted, which is not yet certain as they are struggling in their match at Northampton.

Victory for third-placed Northants would reduce the gap to 13 points with one game left.

The Durham players were unsettled by the ECB's draconian punishment of the club for requesting a financial bail-out and the failure to mount a promotion challenge has not helped.

There is even talk of Graham Onions considering a move which would offer him the chance to follow his ambition to get into coaching.

There have been rumours of an approach from Kent, but Onions has stressed he is desperate to continue playing for Durham, who have offered him a one-year deal based on playing four-day cricket only.

If Tom Latham agrees to return next season he could be offered the captaincy. Paul Collingwood cannot shoulder the burden forever and if Jennings moves he would be the third player to leave after being groomed to take over following Coughlin and Mark Stoneman.

Cameron Steel, another potential future captain, shared a second-wicket stand of 163 with Latham against Sussex yesterday before both surrendered in the 70s.

Durham slipped from 168 for one to 222 for five before being revived by an excellent unbeaten 73 from Graham Clark, taking them to 321 for six, 25 behind, when bad light ended play ten overs early.

Chris Jordan ran in strongly at the outset and troubled Latham a few times before the New Zealand left-hander began to strike boundaries with effortless ease.

Having reached 50 off 92 balls with seven fours, he was almost bowled round his legs by the first ball when Ollie Robinson switched from seam to off spin three overs before lunch.

Both batsmen were coasting in early afternoon, but departed in similar fashion off miscued pulls. Steel fell for 73 when he found deep mid-wicket and four overs later Latham skied to deep backward square to depart for 77.

Paul Collingwood got off the mark by driving George Garton wide of mid-on for four, but two balls later the young left-armer skidded one through to pin him bang in front.

Replays suggested Michael Richardson was justified in looking nonplussed when adjudged caught behind off a ball from Jordan which left him sharply off the pitch.

But with Clark looking secure and pulling strongly, a further 99 were added for the loss of Ryan Pringle, who studiously ignored a few balls he might have put away in contributing 19 to a stand of 57.

When Robinson again switched to off spin for three overs before the new ball was taken he had Pringle lbw on the back foot.

Clark then enjoyed better support from Brydon Carse, who confirmed his development as a batsman with some bold strokes in his unbeaten 21.