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Game abandoned without a ball bowled

Middlesex missed the chance to move to the top of the Vitality Blast South Group as their clash with Essex Eagles was washed out.

The Eagles and Middlesex had never previously seen a T20 game between each other rained off, while the wash out between the two counties at Chelmsford came in the 1985 John Player Special League.

The latest start time, for a five overs-a-side smash out, would have been 9.27pm but after steady rain throughout Wednesday at the Cloudfm County Ground, Chelmsford, the outfield proved too wet to start.

The umpires eventually abandoned the match at 7.50pm.

Dawid Malan’s side have enjoyed their best campaign for three years having won six of their opening nine fixtures, and sit two points adrift of leaders Sussex.

That form has been underpinned by Malan and overseas star AB de Villiers’ combined 623 runs, although the South African was unavailable for the trip to Essex.

Instead, new signing, Pakistan batsman Mohammad Hafeez, was due to make his Middlesex debut.

Mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman’s spell in north-west London has now come to an end, after seven wickets, and a superb economy, in nine matches, after he was recalled by Afghanistan.

On the other hand, Essex have struggled to get their Blast campaign flowing, with only two victories stunting their hopes of progression.

Rain has prevented the Eagles from gaining momentum, with this their third no result of the year.

Essex only need to wait until Friday to get back to Blast action, when they face Glamorgan at the Cloudfm County Ground.

While Middlesex’s next outing comes against Sussex in the Specsavers County Championship, starting on Sunday, before returning to the Blast a week on Thursday vs Hampshire at Lord’s.

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