Having achieved promotion last year from the D40 Development League into the D40 South League, it's been a tough year on the field for Middlesex's Disability side this term.

Despite the challenges that a step up in class naturally brings for any side, there have been plenty of lessons learned, plenty of experience gained, and plenty of individual successes to celebrate.

The latest success, and it's a hugely significant one at that, involves two of Middlesex Disability's young stars, Samuel Kumar and Matthew Jones, who are now looking forward to taking a significant step on the international pathway, having both been selected to represent the England Lions Disability side.

Matthew Jones is 17 years old and an opening batsman and off-spinner. He has been with the Middlesex Disability Programme since day one, joining five years ago. He is the club's current Vice-Captain. 

Matthew has been an integral member of the Middlesex squad, being the club's leading wicket taker for the past 2 years and has been 2nd or 3rd highest run scorer over that period as well.

Matthew was asked to trial for the England training programme earlier this year, which proved so successful that he was invited back to trial for the England full squad in a game at Nuneaton Cricket Club. Ultimately this trial process led to him being offered a place in the England Lions squad.

Michael Wilson, Middlesex Cricket's Head Coach of Disability Cricket commented...

"Matthew has shown a high level of maturity with his performances both on and off the pitch. He always does what's best for the team, and stepped up as captain when the current captain got injured at the start of the season.

"He has shown that his true potential hasn't yet been reached, when he went up against the best players in the country and still stood out enough to get selected for the Lions squad.

"He has a bright future in disability cricket and has made himself not only a valued member of Middlesex's Disability side, but also of his mainstream club at Uxbridge."

Samuel Kumar is just 13 years old and is a leg-spinner and lower order batsman. He has burst on to the disability cricket scene from nowhere and has shown he has the potential to be a very important member of Middlesex's hardball squad.

Sam has impressed everyone from the first moment they saw him play, from his county coaches, when turning the ball square at Finchley, to the England coaches, when doing the same on a tricky wicket for spinners whilst on trial at Nuneaton with England. 

Sam took 3 wickets on debut against an impressive Surrey team, and hasn't looked back since!

Michael Wilson commented on Sam's call-up...

"Sam has shown he has a level of maturity and skills way above his age group.

"Playing at 13 years old against men that have been playing for longer than he's been alive - he's out-smarting them and using his strengths as a cricketer to win games and destroy batting line ups at will.

"He has a huge future ahead him and with some more experience he will show he has the potential to play full international cricket very soon."

Wilson added...

"These two young men have shown they will be the best two spinners in the country when they reach 20 years old and having them both at Middlesex will give us a great boost going forward in our programme.

"With their involvement, combined with the talented squad we already have here at the club, the future looks bright for Middlesex county disability cricket and its an absolute honour to be a part of it as the club's Head Coach.

"I couldn't be more proud of the whole squad in both the Super 9s and the D40 tournaments."