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Essex Eagles v Middlesex Match Preview & Squad

over 8 years ago | Uncategorised

What a difference a couple of days makes! After the disappointment of Middlesex’s outing to the Ageas Bowl last Saturday, came a performance that broke records across the board, as Middlesex’s batsmen ran riot at the crease at the Brighton and Hove Stadium in Hove just two days later.

Middlesex will be thankful for some momentum as they head to Castle Park, Colchester, tomorrow, to take on an Essex Eagles side who at the point of writing this match preview, have an identical record to Middlesex, with five points on the board from five games played, having won two, lost two, and having had one match abandoned. Group B is in fact so tight that Kent, Hampshire and Warwickshire also boast the very same record, making the group table extremely congested and tomorrow’s clash at Essex’s Colchester cricket festival a real crunch encounter for both sides.

The standings within Group B will become a little clearer by the end of this evening, as by the time we stroll out against Essex tomorrow, they’ll have already played again today, against Hampshire, whilst Lancashire will have also played against Nottinghamshire. Middlesex will be hoping that securing a win against Essex tomorrow in Colchester should then see them requiring just one more victory against either Nottinghamshire or Glamorgan, in one of the club’s two remaining Group B matches, to all but cement their place within this season’s quarter finals.

Yesterday’s thrilling encounter at Hove saw Nick Gubbins and Dawid Malan come together with the score on just 18 for 1. When their explosive partnership ended, both batsmen had hit hundreds, at over a run a ball, and they had annihilated Desmond Haynes’ and Mike Gatting’s sixteen year old List-A 2nd wicket partnership against Sussex of 201, plus had surpassed Mike Smith’s and Clive Radley’s 38 year old club record highest ever List-A 2nd wicket partnership of 223. By the time the innings closed they’d done their job, had added 268 runs, and had helped Middlesex to their highest ever total in List-A cricket, 367, surpassing the 350 hit against Lancashire at Lord’s in 2012.

Whilst the batting fired, and fired big, the bowling again was cause for concern, as despite batting records tumbling across the board, Sussex’s run chase got them alarmingly close, as Middlesex clung on for a nail-biting victory in a last ball finish, which had Sussex batsman Tim Linley launched over the ropes, would have seen the home side to an historic victory themselves.

With just three group matches to go, Middlesex are still very much in the mix, and whilst tomorrow’s trip to Essex will be anything but straightforward, a win against Ryan ten Doeschate’s men will do the Seaxes' prospects no harm whatsoever as they look to bag themselves a quarter final position.

Middlesex again rest Eoin Morgan for this match and name James Franklin as captain of the following fourteen man squad:

Franklin (captain), Balbirnie, Compton, Dexter, Gubbins, Harris, Khan, Malan, Patel, Rayner, Robson, Roland-Jones, Sandhu & Simpson

PLEASE NOTE: Tomorrow's match starts at 11AM, not as previously advertised at 10.30am.

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