Middlesex return to Lord’s tomorrow where they’ll pick up their Specsavers County Championship campaign looking to secure their first four-day win of the year.
Having hit three half-centuries in his last three innings for loan side Derbyshire, Middlesex have recalled Tom Lace, who will provide cover for the missing Eoin Morgan and Paul Stirling – both absent on international duty, and Dawid Malan, who remains side-lined with a groin injury. Lace is expected to slot straight into the side and make his Middlesex First Eleven debut at Lord’s tomorrow.
Middlesex’s Championship campaign has stuttered somewhat to date, with a disappointing draw against Northamptonshire in week one being followed up by a loss to Lancashire at Lord’s in week two. Tomorrow’s match-up with Leicestershire however provides Law and his side with the chance to get their account up and running to get some much needed points on the board.
Leicestershire themselves surprised many in their opening encounter when demolishing Sussex at Hove by seven wickets, although they came crashing down to earth in their following game as Worcestershire romped to an innings victory.
With all counties on an enforced break from red-ball activities for the last three weeks to play out the group and semi-final stages of the Royal London One-Day Cup, Middlesex will be far the happier of the two sides with the form they’ve shown throughout this period. Law’s men, with six wins in their eight group matches, will bring form and momentum into tomorrow’s clash and will quite rightly be favourites to claim the win at Lord’s - although they’ll have do so again with a side that’s missing many of its regulars.
With Malan, Morgan and Stirling all absent on the batting front, Steven Finn and Tim Murtagh are missing with the ball, with the former still injured and the latter with Ireland on International duty. Their absence presents an opportunity for young Ethan Bamber, who is named in the squad and could be set to make his first start of the campaign after impressing towards the end of the 2018 campaign.
Middlesex name the following thirteen-man squad for the clash with Leicestershire at Lord’s…
Stephen Eskinazi (Captain)
John Simpson (wicket-keeper)