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MATCH REPORTS - SURREY v MIDDLESEX

4 months ago|Matches

RESULT – Day 4: Middlesex 347/6 dec and 248/6 dec beat Surrey 282 and 123 by 190 runs at the Kia Oval

Sam Robson took two wickets in two balls with his occasional leg spin to spark a remarkable 190-run Middlesex victory against Surrey deep inside the final hour of a gripping Bob Willis Trophy London derby at the Kia Oval.

Surrey looked to be holding on quite comfortably for the draw after tea, with Rikki Clarke and Jordan Clark defending resolutely through 23 overs. But, with 16 overs remaining, Robson was thrown the ball by Middlesex’s acting captain Stephen Eskinazi and, with his fourth and fifth deliveries, he removed Clark and Dan Moriarity in dramatic fashion.

Clark, having made 7 from 66 balls, chipped back a long hop and then an ecstatic Robson pinned Moriarty leg-before with a looping leg break which hit the left-hander on the foot as he played forward.

Suddenly, at 119 for 7 rather than 119 for 5, Middlesex smelled blood and it was their former West Indies fast bowler Miguel Cummins who swept them on towards their 22-point triumph, first having Matt Dunn superbly held for 0 at short leg by Max Holden as he fended off a vicious lifter and then bowling James Taylor for 4 with an inswinger.

Clarke, desperately looking to claim the strike with last man Amar Virdi now in, advanced to the fifth ball of the 63rd over – bowled by Nathan Sowter – and the leg-spinner cleverly fired it through the batsman’s legs for keeper John Simpson to gather and complete the stumping as Clarke tried in vain to scramble back into his crease. Clarke, Surrey’s acting captain, made 22 from 104 balls.

The last five Surrey wickets had tumbled for four runs in seven overs and, with 8.1 overs remaining, Middlesex could celebrate a famous win against their greatest rivals. Robson, who had only previously taken four first-class wickets at almost 50 runs apiece but was given two more tidy overs following his memorable intervention, finished with figures of 3-3-0-2 and the impressive Cummins took 3 for 30.

Earlier, Surrey had lost three wickets in as many overs just before lunch, which they took on a wobbly 20 for 3 after Middlesex had set them 314 to win in 71 overs. But then they recovered through a 64-run stand between Ryan Patel and Jamie Smith before both fell to short balls from James Harris and Cummins respectively in the 30th and 33rd overs.

Patel could not believe it when he swung a short ball from Harris high to deep mid wicket to go for 44, while Smith reached a classy 40 before touching a lifter from Cummins, angled across him from around the wicket, as he tried to get his bat out of the way.

Mark Stoneman had been the first Surrey batsman to fall, leg-before to Tim Murtagh for 4 as he prodded defensively forward to the veteran seamer and then, in the next over and with his first ball of the innings, left-arm spinner Thilan Walallawita struck a further blow by having Scott Borthwick smartly taken by wicketkeeper Simpson for 1 as he flicked at a ball turning past his pads from over the wicket.

Then, on the stroke of lunch, Murtagh came in off a shorter run to nip one back through Will Jacks’ defences to bowl him for 0 with the fifth ball of the 11th over. Surrey, who had lost their last seven first innings wickets for just 28 runs on day three, were suddenly fighting for survival rather than dreaming of a glorious victory chase.

Moriarty, a 20-year-old slow left-arm spinner born in Reigate but raised in South Africa, had earlier taken 5 for 64. Like his fellow left-arm spinner Walallawita, he was making his first-class debut and already had 3 for 39 overnight. But he impressed again on the fourth morning of the match after Middlesex resumed their second innings on 184 for 3 looking for quick runs.

Nick Gubbins added just 11 to his overnight 49 before being bowled by Moriarity in extraordinary fashion. Aiming a premeditated reverse sweep, the left-hander lost his balance and was on his hands and knees in the crease as his middle stump was uprooted.

Martin Andersson, resuming on 35 and completing a half-century with successive fours off Virdi, went for 51 from 62 balls, with ten fours, when he lifted a catch to short extra cover off a leading edge to give Moriarty his fifth scalp.

Simpson mishit Virdi’s off spin to deep mid wicket to go for 18 before Sowter, with two not out, came in to keep Harris (17 not out) company before the declaration came at 248 for 6 after an hour’s play at 12 noon.


TEA: Day 4: Middlesex 347/6 dec and 248/6 dec v Surrey 282 and 106/5 at the Kia Oval

Middlesex were pressing for victory in the Bob Willis Trophy’s London derby after reducing Surrey to 106 for 5 in their second innings by tea on the final day at the Kia Oval.

With a minimum of 31 overs to be bowled in the last session, and a victory target of 314 in beyond them, Surrey were left looking to Rikki Clarke and Jordan Clark – unbeaten on 13 and 3 respectively – to guide them to safety.

When Tim Murtagh took two early wickets and Thilan Walallawita one, just before lunch, Surrey had slid to 20 for 3. But Ryan Patel and Jamie Smith then steadied things with a stand of 64 until James Harris and Miguel Cummins revived Middlesex’s hopes with some aggressive pace bowling deep into the afternoon session.

Patel could not believe it when he swung a short ball from Harris high to deep mid wicket to go for 44, while Smith reached a classy 40 before touching a lifter from Cummins, angled across him from around the wicket, as he tried to get his bat out of the way.

Mark Stoneman had been the first Surrey batsman to fall, leg-before to Tim Murtagh for 4 as he prodded defensively forward to the veteran seamer and then, in the next over and with his first ball of the innings, Walallawita struck a further blow by having Scott Borthwick smartly taken by wicketkeeper John Simpson for 1 as he flicked at a ball turning past his pads from over the wicket.

Then, on the stroke of lunch, Murtagh came in off a shorter run to nip one back through Will Jacks’ defences to bowl him for 0 with the fifth ball of the 11th over. Three wickets had gone is as many overs and Surrey were suddenly fighting for survival rather than dreaming of a glorious victory chase.

Dan Moriarty, a 20-year-old slow left-arm spinner born in Reigate but raised in South Africa, had earlier taken 5 for 64. Like his fellow left-arm spinner Walallawita, he was making his first-class debut and already had 3 for 39 overnight. But he impressed again on the fourth morning of the match after Middlesex resumed on 184 for three looking for quick runs.

Nick Gubbins added just 11 to his overnight 49 before being bowled by Moriarity in extraordinary fashion. Aiming a premeditated reverse sweep, the left-hander lost his balance and was on his hands and knees in the crease as his middle stump was uprooted.

Martin Andersson, resuming on 35 and completing a half-century with successive fours off Amar Virdi, went for 51 from 62 balls, with ten fours, when he lifted a catch to short extra cover off a leading edge to give Moriarty his fifth scalp.

Simpson mishit Virdi’s off spin to deep mid wicket to go for 18 before Sowter, with two not out, came in to keep Harris (17 not out) company before the declaration came after an hour’s play at 12 noon, leaving Surrey with a minimum of 71 overs to bat.


LUNCH: Day 4: Middlesex 347/6 dec and 248/6 dec v Surrey 282 and 20/3 at the Kia Oval

Left-arm spinner Dan Moriarity marked his first-class debut by taking 5 for 64 in Middlesex’s second innings of 248 for six declared, but Surrey were in deep trouble on 20 for 3 by lunch after being set 314 from a minimum of 71 overs to win the Bob Willis Trophy’s London derby at the Kia Oval.

Mark Stoneman fell leg-before to Tim Murtagh for 4 as he prodded defensively forward to the veteran seamer and then, in the next over and with his first ball of the innings, Thilan Walallawita – another slow left-armer on debut – struck a further significant blow for Middlesex by having Scott Borthwick smartly taken by wicketkeeper John Simpson for 1 as he flicked at a ball turning past his pads from over the wicket.

Then, on the stroke of lunch, Murtagh came in off a shorter run to nip one back through Will Jacks’ defences to bowl him for 0 with the fifth ball of the 11th over. Ryan Patel was unbeaten on 14 but Surrey were no doubt already thinking more of survival than a glorious victory chase.

Moriarty, a 20-year-old born in Reigate but raised in South Africa, already had 3 for 39 overnight and he impressed again on the fourth morning of the match after Middlesex resumed on 184 for three looking for quick runs.

Nick Gubbins added just 11 to his overnight 49 before being bowled by Moriarity in extraordinary fashion. Aiming a premeditated reverse sweep, the left-hander lost his balance and was on his hands and knees in the crease as his middle stump was uprooted.

Martin Andersson, resuming on 35 and completing a half-century with successive fours off Amar Virdi, went for 51 from 62 balls, with ten fours, when he lifted a catch to short extra cover off a leading edge to give Moriarty his fifth scalp.

Simpson mishit Virdi’s off spin to deep mid wicket to go for 18 before Nathan Sowter, with two not out, came in to keep James Harris (17 not out) company before the declaration came after an hour’s play at 12 noon.


STUMPS: Day 3: Middlesex 347/6 declared and 184/3 v Surrey 282 at the Kia Oval

Tim Murtagh’s devastating second new ball spell of 6-5-4-4, and a dramatic Surrey collapse in which they lost their last seven first innings wickets for only 28 runs in 15 overs either side of lunch, has given Middlesex full control of the Bob Willis Trophy’s London derby.

By the end of day three Middlesex had stretched their overall lead to 249 by reaching 184 for 3 in their second innings with Max Holden scoring 43 and Nick Gubbins following up his first innings 192 with 49 not out.

Gubbins added a handy 71 in just 11 overs in the late afternoon sunshine with Martin Andersson, who has so far hit seven fours in a punchy unbeaten 35 off 37 balls.

Holden was joined by Sam Robson (31) in a first wicket stand of 70 before being brilliantly caught by Rikki Clarke at slip off Dan Moriarty, who then had Robson caught behind from one that bounced and turned and Stephen Eskinazi taken at short leg for 18 in a fine spell of 3 for 39 from 15 accurate overs.

Veteran seamer Murtagh, who turned 39 yesterday, earlier finished with figures of 5 for 47 as Surrey, at one stage cruising on 254 for three in reply to Middlesex’s 347 for six declared, were tumbled out for 282.

And, despite the efforts of Surrey’s 20-year-old slow left-armer Moriarity, on his first-class debut, Middlesex will fancy their chances of beating their traditional rivals on a pitch that is starting to take more spin and also showing some signs of inconsistent bounce.

Most counties are facing this abbreviated season with significant absentees, particularly those who are included in the extended England Test and one-day international ‘bubbles’, but Surrey are perhaps more handicapped than others in the South Group with a full XI of senior players currently unavailable.

This includes their seven England squad players, their two Kolpak-registered South Africans Morne Morkel and Hashim Amla, absent due to global travel restrictions, and the pace bowlers Liam Plunkett, Conor McKerr and Jade Dernbach because of injury niggles.

And Middlesex, although themselves without the powerful fast bowling trio of Steven Finn, Toby Roland-Jones and Tom Helm, still have the estimable Murtagh to lead their attack and he swept aside Jordan Clark, Moriarty, Matt Dunn and Amar Virdi to take his career first-class wickets tally to 821.

The third day, however, had begun with Surrey looking the likeliest side to get on top until Scott Borthwick’s dismissal for 92, hoicking a first ball long hop from Andersson to mid wicket, and which followed a fourth wicket stand of 105 with Jamie Smith, who went on to make an impressive 80 from 166 balls, with a six and 14 fours.

Surrey had resumed on 189 for three, and initially Borthwick and Smith added a further 65 in 18 overs. But, just when it seemed that Surrey would push on to a first innings advantage for themselves, Borthwick fell in the 86th over – after facing 240 balls, hitting 12 fours – and, suddenly, fortunes changed.

Clarke was well caught by wicketkeeper John Simpson for 1, gloving a sweep at leg spinner Nathan Sowter, and then Murtagh grabbed the second new ball to huge effect. Clark and Moriarty fell before lunch, and Dunn and Virdi to consecutive balls to finish off the innings soon after Smith was eighth out, caught at second slip off Miguel Cummins.

Clark was superbly held by a diving Simpson for 1, trying to leg glance, and Moriarty leg-before for a duck. Dunn was bowled for 1 by a beauty which clipped the top of his off stump and Virdi was struck in front shuffling across to his first ball. No fewer than 13 of Murtagh’s 27 overs were maidens.


TEA: Day 3: Middlesex 347/6 declared and 62/0 v Surrey 282 at the Kia Oval

Tim Murtagh produced a devastating second new ball spell of 6-5-4-4 as Surrey lost their last seven first innings wickets for only 28 runs either side of lunch and Middlesex took dramatic control of the Bob Willis Trophy’s London derby on day three.

Murtagh finished with figures of 5 for 47 as Surrey, cruising on 254 for three in reply to Middlesex’s 347 for six declared, were tumbled out for 282. And, in 22 overs’ batting before tea, Middlesex reached 62 without loss in their second innings to stretch their overall lead to 127 with four sessions of the match still remaining.

Max Holden, sweeping and reverse-sweeping Amar Virdi for three fours while also hitting him over mid off for another boundary, was on 41 not out and his opening partner Sam Robson was unbeaten on 21.

Scott Borthwick’s dismissal for 92, hoicking a long hop from Martin Andersson to mid wicket, was the start of Surrey’s headlong collapse – following a fourth wicket stand of 105 with Jamie Smith, who went on to make an impressive 80 from 166 balls, with a six and 14 fours, as Surrey’s late-order wickets fell around him.

Surrey had resumed on 189 for three, and initially Borthwick and Smith added a further 65 in 18 overs. But, just when it seemed that Surrey were looking to push on to try to get a first innings advantage for themselves, Borthwick fell in the 86th over – after facing 240 balls, hitting 12 fours – and, suddenly, fortunes changed.

Rikki Clarke was well caught by wicketkeeper John Simpson for 1, gloving a sweep at leg spinner Nathan Sowter, and then Murtagh took the second new ball to claim the scalps of Jordan Clark and Dan Moriarty before lunch, plus Matt Dunn and Virdi in consecutive balls to finish off the innings soon after Smith was eighth out, caught at second slip off Miguel Cummins.

Clark was well held by a diving Simpson for 1, trying to leg glance, and Moriarty leg-before for a duck. Dunn was bowled for 1 by a beauty which clipped the top of his off stump and Virdi was struck in front shuffling across to his first ball. Murtagh’s final figures were an impressive 25-13-47-5.


LUNCH: Day 3: Surrey 269/7 v Middlesex 347/6 declared at the Kia Oval

Scott Borthwick and Jamie Smith took their fourth wicket partnership to 105 before Surrey lost four wickets inside ten overs to stutter to 269 for seven from 95 overs by lunch on day three in reply to Middlesex’s 347 for six declared in the Bob Willis Trophy opener at the Kia Oval.

Borthwick fell for 92 after resuming on 73 as Surrey began the day on 189 for three but Smith, who provided most of the morning’s acceleration until the sudden clatter of wickets put Middlesex back on top, had gone from his overnight 15 to an unbeaten 74 by the interval.

At the other end, though, both Rikki Clarke and Jordan Clark were dismissed for 1, while Dan Moriarity became Tm Murtagh’s second victim with the second new ball, leg-before for 0 on the stroke of lunch.

Middlesex wicketkeeper John Simpson took superb catches to send back Clarke and Clark, first showing great anticipation to snap up Clarke’s gloved paddle sweep at Nathan Sowter’s leg spin and then diving to his left to scoop up a low leg glance from Clark in Murtagh’s second over with the new ball.

Borthwick, having battled hard for 240 balls, was distraught when he hit a long hop from Martin Andersson to mid wicket when the medium pacer was brought on for the 86th over.

The left-hander hit 12 fours in a gritty and important effort for his team, but it was a dismissal which proved the start of a dramatic turnaround in fortunes and left Smith, who has so far faced 160 balls and hit a six and 13 fours, with only the tail for company and the prospect of a first innings deficit.


STUMPS: Day 2: Surrey 189/3 v Middlesex 347/6 declared at the Kia Oval

Scott Borthwick’s four-hour unbeaten 73 anchored Surrey’s 189 for three from 67 overs in the Bob Willis Trophy’s London derby at the Kia Oval following an imaginative Middlesex first innings declaration on 347 for six.

Borthwick was joined in stands of 71, 69 and then an unbroken 40 that occupied almost 24 overs by Mark Stoneman, Will Jacks and Jamie Smith as Surrey’s top order battled hard on a sluggish pitch that did not make strokeplay a straightforward business.

Stoneman’s 45 took him 88 balls, with nine fours – three of them in one Tim Murtagh over – while Jacks played the punchiest innings of day two with 36 from 50 balls, including a six and five fours.

Smith, though, took a long time to get going, with Nathan Sowter’s leg spin proving particularly hard to score from with just 22 runs coming from his 11 overs. After facing 44 balls, Smith still only had a single to his name but, to his credit, he refused to get flustered and, by stumps, had fought his way to 15 not out.

Borthwick, who batted throughout the afternoon and evening sessions and has faced 183 balls, hitting ten fours, played with great determination and did not play a false shot until he flapped at a short ball from Miguel Cummins on 50 and was fortunate to see it drop to the turf midway between the slips and third man.

Thilan Walallawita, Middlesex’s Sri Lanka-born 22-year-old left-arm spinner, claimed a maiden first-class wicket on debut when Stoneman lifted a cut to backward point in his sixth over.

The left-handed opener looked disgusted with himself for the mistake after he and Borthwick had built a solid foundation after Ryan Patel had fallen for just 4 in Murtagh’s second over.

Murtagh, on his 39th birthday, saw keeper John Simpson dive to his left to take a brilliant low catch when Patel’s edge gave Middlesex early reward for their declaration with 8.3 of their maximum 120-over first innings allocation still unbowled, and which left Surrey with three overs to negotiate before the lunch interval.

Jacks swung and swept Walallawita for fours as he accelerated smoothly, but was then pinned leg-before by an inswinger from James Harris.

On 264 for four overnight, Middlesex earlier struggled to push on against some accurate Surrey bowling. Choosing not to take a second new ball that had become available towards the end of the first day after 90 overs, Surrey concentrated on containment and not even Nick Gubbins – who resumed on 150 – could break the shackles.

Gubbins was finally out for 192, from 315 balls with a six and 19 fours, when he sliced Rikki Clarke to backward point in a vain attempt to get Middlesex to a fourth batting bonus point. Simpson, who had helped Gubbins to add 131 in 36 overs for the fifth wicket, was also dismissed, leg-before sweeping at Borthwick’s leg spin for 53, just ahead of the declaration.


TEA: Day 2: Surrey 129/2 v Middlesex 347/6 declared at the Kia Oval

Thilan Walallawita, the Sri Lankan-born slow left-armer, claimed Mark Stoneman for his maiden first-class wicket as Surrey reached 129 for two by tea on day two of the Bob Willis Trophy’s London derby in reply to Middlesex’s first innings 347 for six declared.

Stoneman cruised to 45 before lifting a cut to backward point in 22-year-old Walallawita’s sixth over, having dominated a second wicket stand of 71 with Scott Borthwick, who had gone on to 43 not out by the interval.

Three fours in a Tim Murtagh over sped Stoneman through the 20s but he then needed treatment after taking a nasty blow to his bottom hand when James Harris, from around the wicket, nipped one back into the left-handed opener as he shaped to square cut.

Stoneman, though, pulled and square drove Harris for fours in the seamer’s next over and it was something of a surprise when he was dismissed. Will Jacks was with Borthwick on 22 not out after making a characteristically punchy start to his innings.

Earlier, Middlesex’s enterprising declaration, when they opted to forego 8.3 of their 120-over first innings allocation, had led to the early wicket of Ryan Patel, brilliantly held by diving wicketkeeper John Simpson for 4 as he pushed at Murtagh – a 39th birthday present for the long-serving seamer against his former county.

On 264 for four overnight, Middlesex struggled to push on against some accurate Surrey bowling. Choosing not to take a second new ball that had become available towards the end of the first day after 90 overs, Surrey concentrated on containment and not even Nick Gubbins – who resumed on 150 – could break the shackles.

Gubbins was finally out for 192, from 315 balls with a six and 19 fours, when he sliced Rikki Clarke to backward point in a vain attempt to get Middlesex to a fourth batting bonus point. Simpson, who had helped Gubbins to add 131 in 36 overs for the fifth wicket, was also dismissed, leg-before sweeping at Borthwick’s leg spin for 53, just ahead of the declaration.


LUNCH: Day 2: Surrey 9/1 v Middlesex 347/6 declared at the Kia Oval

Surrey lost opener Ryan Patel, brilliantly caught by keeper John Simpson off Tim Murtagh for 4, to slip to 9 for one in 2.4 overs by lunch after Middlesex had chosen to declare on 347 for six with 8.3 overs of their 120-over first innings allocation unbowled.

It was reward for an imaginative move from Middlesex’s acting captain Stevie Eskinazi once Nick Gubbins had eventually fallen for 192 and Simpson for 53 following a resumption on 264 for four.

In truth, Middlesex failed to capitalize fully on their overnight position, falling six runs short of a fourth batting bonus point and, overall, adding only 83 more runs in 20.3 overs on a sluggish surface.

Gubbins, who resumed on 150, did manage to reverse sweep Scott Borthwick’s leg spin for four but otherwise struggled to pierce a deep-set field. Surrey, for their part, opted not to take the second new ball – which had been available at 90 overs – and concentrated on containment.

Simpson, on 19 at the start of play, drove seamer James Taylor for successive fours in the morning’s sixth over, and also reverse-swept Borthwick to the boundary, but he too could not get on top of Surrey’s attack.

The fifth wicket pair had added 131 from 36 overs when Gubbins skied Rikki Clarke to backward point from the second ball of the 110th over, when eight more runs were required for an extra batting point. The left-hander had faced 315 balls, hitting a six and19 fours.

Surrey thought they might have clinched a second bowling bonus point, but Clarke’s appeal for leg-before against James Harris from the final ball of the 110th over was turned down.

Simpson, sweeping, was leg-before to Borthwick in the next over, having faced 109 balls and hit four fours. Clarke finished with a creditable three for 48, and Borthwick one for 43 from 13 overs.


STUMPS: Day 1: Middlesex 264/4 v Surrey at the Kia Oval

Nick Gubbins struck a superb unbeaten 150 at the Kia Oval on the opening day of the Bob Willis Trophy to reignite a career which, last summer, faltered badly for a batsman who was in line for an England Test cap within two years of making his Middlesex debut in 2014.

The 26-year-old left-hander won England Lions recognition soon after being one of the stars of Middlesex’s 2016 county championship winning season, but last year he managed just 530 four-day runs at an average of 22 – with just three scores above fifty from 24 innings.

But, after also hitting a hundred in last week’s two-day friendly against Surrey at the Kia Oval, Gubbins simply carried on where he left off by stroking 17 fours and a six to spearhead Middlesex’s progress towards 264 for four from 91 overs after opting to bat first. It was only his second championship century in three years but he can rarely have played better.

Surrey’s bowlers were admirably disciplined throughout a day that was due to be part of the government’s pilot scheme aimed at getting crowds back to elite sport, before being postponed for at least a fortnight, and it was a shame that the expected 2,500 attendance was not in place to appreciate both Gubbins’ fluent knock and Surrey’s efforts in the field.

Rikki Clarke was the pick of Surrey’s seamers with two for 33, while both spinners - Amar Virdi and Dan Moriarty – impressed with their control. Moriarty, aged 20, picked up his maiden first-class wicket on debut when Matt Dunn pulled off a magnificent sprawling catch, running back from deep mid on and taking the ball over his left shoulder after Stevie Eskinazi miscued an attempted big hit.

Eskinazi made 18, as did Martin Andersson after him before being leg-before to Clarke, while Max Holden got to 48 in a second wicket partnership of 111 with Gubbins following the early loss of Sam Robson.

Robson, on 7, edged Clarke’s sixth ball at the end of the second over of the match and was brilliantly held by diving wicketkeeper Jamie Smith but Gubbins immediately looked assured, cover driving the first ball he faced for four.

Holden, though, was dropped twice off unlucky seamer Dunn on 4 and 18, with Scott Borthwick failing to hold on at second slip when Middlesex were 15 for one in the seventh over and then Will Jacks putting down a fierce cut in the gully during Dunn’s second spell fifteen minutes before lunch.

Virdi eventually ended left-hander Holden’s 136-ball stay with a ball that turned sharply to take a thin edge on its way into Smith’s gloves – and the off spinner showed his delight by immediately setting off on one of his trademark celebratory sprints into the outfield.

Moriarty, Reigate-born but schooled in South Africa, reacted similarly when Dunn’s memorable catch gave the left-arm spinner his maiden first-class scalp – but Dunn later dropped a relative sitter at mid on when John Simpson mishit Virdi on 1.

Gubbins had faced 257 balls by stumps, dominating the innings and late on advancing down the pitch to loft Virdi straight for six. Some of his extra cover driving was of the highest class. On the second day Middlesex will have another 29 overs available to them to push on, with first innings restricted to 120 overs under Bob Willis Trophy regulations.


TEA: Day 1: Tea – Middlesex 164/3 v Surrey at the Kia Oval

Nick Gubbins stroked 11 fours in an excellent unbeaten 84 as Middlesex reached tea on 164 for three in their opening Bob Willis Trophy fixture against Surrey at the Kia Oval.

Gubbins was joined in a second wicket partnership of 111 by opener Max Holden, who made a rather more fortuitous 48 before edging Amar Virdi’s off spin to wicketkeeper Jamie Smith.

And new Middlesex captain Stevie Eskinazi helped to add a further 37 with Gubbins before, on 18, trying to hit slow left-armer Dan Moriarty over long on but failing to connect fully and seeing Matt Dunn take a superb sprawling catch. It was 20-year-old Moriarty’s maiden first-class wicket on Surrey debut.

Moriarty’s delight, as he ran to congratulate Dunn, was similar to that previously displayed by Virdi, who set off on one of his trademark celebratory sprints into the outfield after getting sharp turn to remove the left-handed Holden.

In the opening session Holden was dropped twice off unlucky seamer Dunn on 4 and 18, but Gubbins batted with great assurance on a pitch which did give Surrey’s quicker bowlers some early help. Holden’s escapes came when Scott Borthwick failed to hold on at second slip with Middlesex 15 for one in the seventh over and then Will Jacks putting down a fierce cut in the gully during Dunn’s second spell fifteen minutes before lunch.

Earlier, Sam Robson was brilliantly caught on 7 by wicketkeeper Smith, diving to his right in front of first slip, when he edged Rikki Clarke’s sixth ball of the game following Middlesex’s decision to bat first.


LUNCH: Day 1: Lunch – Middlesex 72/1 v Surrey at the Kia Oval

Nick Gubbins was 40 not out as Middlesex reached lunch on 72 for one in their opening Bob Willis Trophy fixture against Surrey at the Kia Oval.

Gubbins batted with great assurance on a pitch which gave Surrey’s quicker bowlers some early help, and the home team was left to rue two dropped catches when Max Holden was on 4 and 18.

Seamer Matt Dunn was the unlucky bowler on both occasions, with Scott Borthwick failing to hold on at second slip when Middlesex were 15 for one in the seventh over and then Will Jacks putting down a fierce cut in the gully during Dunn’s second spell fifteen minutes before lunch.

Holden made it to the interval on 21 not out but struggled for any fluency unlike his fellow left-hander Gubbins, who hit six fours after coming in at the end of the second over following the early dismissal of Sam Robson for 7.

Robson was brilliantly caught by wicketkeeper Jamie Smith, diving to his right in front of first slip, when he edged Rikki Clarke’s sixth ball of the game following Middlesex’s decision to bat first.

Clarke and Dunn were both excellent with the new ball – Dunn also beating Holden with a beauty the ball after Borthwick’s drop – while Jordan Clark caused Gubbins his one moment of alarm, on 14, with a magnificent delivery from around the wicket which jagged away from him to beat a defensive bat.

In his second spell, Dunn also had a big appeal for a catch behind turned down by umpire Rob Bailey when Holden was on 18.

Before play there was a minute’s silence to honour all those who have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, followed by players from both sides, county staff and match officials taking a knee to promote inclusivity in cricket.

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Related fixture

Sat 01 August
Bob Willis Trophy - South
The Kia Oval
Start Time: 11:00
Duration: 4 days

Surrey Surrey
Middlesex Middlesex

Middlesex won by 190 runs
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