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Durham CCC v Middlesex CCC - Match Preview & Squad

over 8 years ago | Uncategorised

With the focus of Middlesex’s season now firmly set upon the remainder of the red ball campaign, the second placed Seaxes head to Chester-le-Street for the first of four crucial LV= County Championship clashes left to play this year, to take on a Durham side who sit two places and sixteen points behind them in the Division One table.

Following the narrow and thrilling 20 run victory against Sussex at the Home of Cricket last week, Middlesex kept the pressure up on Yorkshire at the top of the table, where others failed. Confidence will be high for the Seaxes’ trip to Durham, where there’ll be looking to secure back to back wins on a pitch which has produced a result in each of Durham’s matches there this term. Encouragingly for Middlesex, whilst result wickets have been the order of the day at Chester-le-Street thus far, they’ve not always been in Durham’s favour, with the home side losing both of their last two County Championship clashes there.

Durham’s early Division One challenge seems to have evaporated of late, with them heading into this game on the back of a wretched run, without a win in their last four Championship matches, losing three of them, to Yorkshire twice and to Warwickshire, and drawing the other with Hampshire. They will be desperate to secure a turnaround in their own fortunes over the next four days to cement their position at the right end of the table.

Middlesex’s recent victory over Sussex, secured in a nervy and tense final session on day four at Lord’s, took on extra significance when Warwickshire slipped up too, in a surprise defeat at the hands of lowly Hampshire, who themselves came out of the fixture with a Division One lifeline, tightening things up at the bottom of the table to apply pressure to Sussex, Worcestershire and Somerset above them!

Another win for Middlesex will see James Franklin’s men pull even further away from Durham, and with Warwickshire facing a tricky clash at Trent Bridge against an in-form Nottinghamshire side, this could prove to be a pivotal week for Middlesex in the LV= County Championship run in.

With tricky fixtures coming up after this one against both Warwickshire and Yorkshire, Middlesex’s destiny lies firmly in their own hands, so it’s all to play for as James Franklin looks to lead his side to another Division One victory.

Player Injury Update

Andy Balbirnie has had some hip soreness and is being rested this week.

Nick Gubbins has a stress fracture in his right foot, which requires immobilisation and rest for six weeks and unfortunately he will therefore be unavailable for the rest of the season.

Tom Helm experienced some discomfort in his back after bowling during the Second Eleven match last week and so the club has decided that we will not be pushing for Tom to return to bowling for the rest of the season. He will continue with his strength and conditioning.

Eoin Morgan is back in training but Middlesex and England have agreed that he still needs some more time away from cricket and so will miss Middlesex’s LV=CC match against Durham, as well as today’s RLODC match against Glamorgan.

Middlesex name the following thirteen man squad for the trip to Durham...

James Franklin (captain), Nick Compton, Neil Dexter, Stephen Eskinazi, James Harris, Dawid Malan, Tim Murtagh, Ollie Rayner, Sam Robson, Toby Roland-Jones, Gurjit Sandhu, John Simpson and Paul Stirling.


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