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Middlesex have named a squad of fifteen to face Kent Spitfires on Sunday in round four of the Vitality Blast down in Canterbury, with the side looking for the first win of our campaign.

Ethan Bamber is added to the fourteen-man squad that was named to face Glamorgan at Lord’s earlier this week.

We head into Sunday’s game off the back of a defeat at Lord’s on Thursday night against Glamorgan, when opportunities to take control of the game with bat, ball, and in the field passed us by.

On a frustrating night at the Home of Cricket, Glamorgan took full advantage, and chased down our under-par total of 173 in the nineteenth over to condemn us to our third straight defeat in the competition.

With the bat, Stephen Eskinazi (48 off 29 balls) and Martin Andersson (57 off 34) got us off to the best possible start, setting a new highest opening partnership record for Middlesex in the Blast at Lord’s, when adding 108 for the first wicket in just 9.4 overs.

From there however things tailed off and we couldn’t capitalise on a great platform, with only two other batters reaching double figures, as the innings petered out to see us post an under par 173 for 8 in our 20 overs.

With the ball, Noah Cornwell struck with his first ever delivery at Lord’s and the first ball of the match, to dismiss Eddie Byrom for a golden duck, however from there Glamorgan recovered to put on 72 in the powerplay without further loss.

Wickets for Ryan Higgins, Luke Hollman and Josh De Caires saw us wrestle some control back, although missed opportunities off Luke Hollman to dismiss both Sam Northeast (missed stumping) and Chris Cooke (dropped at backward point) within the space of three balls, with the score on 112 for 4, cost us dearly.

Northeast and Cooke made the most of the lives they were given, with the former adding another 23 runs and the latter a further 19, to help Glamorgan reach their victory target with an over to spare.

Henry Brookes 3 for 31 was the stand-out for Middlesex with the ball, on a night that could have ended so differently had chances been taken.

In a game where small margins counted so heavily, missed chances led to a night of frustration and disappointment, however there were seeds of hope with both bat and ball that need to be capitalised on in Sunday’s clash with the Spitfires.

Leus du Plooy, who suffered a slight strain to his hand when taking a catch against Kent in our opening match of the competition, has sat on the sidelines for the last two games, however the hope is to see him back and fully recovered for the clash in Canterbury at the weekend.

Our opponents this Sunday, have won 2 of their opening 3 games this term, having beaten us in the opening round, losing to Hampshire in their second Blast outing, and then beating Somerset last night.

In our opener this season against Kent at Chelmsford, we were on the wrong end of a 98 run defeat, when a lacklustre batting performance saw us dismissed for just 107 in reply to the Spitfires total of 205. Daniel Bell-Drummond (38) and Joe Denly (56) top scored for Kent in that one, and Bell-Drummond was also in the runs again in the loss to Hampshire, hitting a quickfire 43 off 30 balls at the Utilita Bowl. Sam Billings hundred last night against Somerset proved the difference, and getting the wickets of Bell-Drummond, Denly and skipper Sam Billings cheaply, will be key to a Middlesex win on Sunday.

Recent clashes between the two sides saw Kent secure victory last season, in the one clash played between the teams, however in 2022 the honours were shared, with Middlesex winning at Lord’s, and Kent winning at Canterbury.

Unquestionably, the return of du Plooy to the Middlesex side this Sunday will make a huge difference, and it’s hard to argue that had he been fit for Thursday’s clash, that Middlesex could well have run out winners against Glamorgan.

So we head into Sunday’s game with sights set on the first win of the campaign, and we’ll need to be at our best in all disciplines, grab the opportunities that come our way, and that’ll give us every chance of achieving that objective.

Middlesex have named the following fifteen-man squad for the clash:

You can watch a live stream of the match from Canterbury, provided by our hosts on Sunday, Kent, however please be aware that the match sits behind a pay-wall, and should you wish to watch the game live, you will need to register and pay £5.99 to do so. Details can be found on how to purchase HERE.

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Related fixture

Sun 09 June
The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence
Start Time: 15:30
Duration: 1 day

Kent Spitfires Kent Spitfires
Middlesex Middlesex

Middlesex won by 4 wickets