The Middlesex Disability D40 First XI got their D40 Quest campaign underway in superb fashion, defeating Essex by seven wickets on Sunday.
After winning the toss, Captain James Nordin chose to bowl on a sunny afternoon at Harlow Town Cricket Club. This decision was repaid almost immediately, when Mohammed Farooq bowled the Essex captain in just the second over, to leave them 1/1. Nordin then got his first wicket of the campaign after a spell of excellent bowling.
After a slight re-build from the Essex batters, Farooq made the breakthrough which gave the Middlesex bowlers all the momentum. From then on, George Greenway took control of the match. First, he took a catch to give Moazzam Rashid a wicket, before taking four wickets for just five runs from five overs – including catches from Nordin and Elliot Brown.
Whilst Essex were unable to fully recover from, they did manage to score 63 runs before Jai Charan took the final wicket of the innings, with Nordin taking his second catch of the day.
In reply, the Middlesex batters were watchful and steady, looking comfortable at the crease without having to take risks. Umesh Valjee and Greenway opened the batting, scoring 10 and 18 respectively to set a platform for the run chase.
After losing Zak Spears for one, Aryan Janjale (14*) and Sam Kumar (8*) guided the team to 64/3, completing a seven-wicket victory with plenty of overs to spare.
The D40 First XI are next in action on 22 May when they travel to Wales, with the Super 9s starting their campaign against Essex on Sunday. The D40 Second XI open their season on 15 May when they host Kent.
You can see the scorecard from Sunday’s victory here.