Middlesex have named a fifteen-man squad for this week’s clash with Leicestershire in round eight of the LV= Insurance County Championship.
Heading to Grace Road off the back of a confidence boosting encounter with rivals Surrey, Head Coach, Stuart Law, will be hoping his side can build on the many positives taken from their battling performance at the Oval.
Things could have been oh so different in South London had the weather not played such a cruel hand late on the final day to deny Middlesex the opportunity to land the London derby double, however runs for Nick Gubbins and skipper Peter Handscomb were much needed and the fighting spirit shown by Law’s side will have lifted the whole group and given them confidence ahead of the trip to the midlands.
Law makes changes for this week’s encounter, with former skipper Stephen Eskinazi recalled to the squad, having spent a month in the second eleven, and he returns to the front side having hit runs for the two’s, after knocks of 79, 43 and 43* in three of his last four innings.
Max Holden joins Eskinazi in being recalled and he replaces young opener Jack Davies in the squad.
Also earning a recall is all-rounder Luke Hollman, who featured early in the campaign, but has missed out in recent weeks.
All others in the squad for last week’s clash at the Oval retain their places, leaving Law with a six strong seam attack, of Andersson, Bamber, Cullen, Harris, Helm and Murtagh to pick from, and two options in the spin department in Walallawita and Hollman. With Holden and Eskinazi boosting the batting ranks, Law is left with plenty of options there too, and it remains to be seen how he shuffles the pack.
Middlesex currently reside in fifth place in Group Two on 55 points, whilst Leicestershire sit at the bottom on 51, but with a game in hand on those above them. It’s a must win game for Middlesex if they are to finish the season strong, put some distance between themselves and the bottom side, and look to haul themselves up the table to restore some pride and end their four-day campaign well.
Middlesex name the following fifteen-man squad:
Peter Handscomb (c)
John Simpson (wk)