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Middlesex 1st XI

2023 was a disappointing season for Middlesex CCC’s 1st XI. In all three forms of the game results and performance fell below expectations. As in every season, there were genuine reasons for optimism but there were too many days where we underperformed.

After gaining promotion in 2022, cricket in the county championship was always going to be tougher. Sadly, we failed to rise to the challenge and our cricket was at times unassertive. In 2022 we were excellent with the bat but in 2023 it was the area where we struggled most.

On pitches that always seemed to have something in them for the bowlers, Ryan Higgins was excellent throughout, showing what a good cricketer he is. Sam Robson came through at the back end of the season but the team failed to score a first innings hundred during the entire summer.

Ethan Bamber, Josh De Caires and Higgins were very good with ball but, even though the bowling averages look competitive, we were still out-bowled on a number of occasions.

We cannot finish this summary without mentioning Tim Murtagh. Tim has been a remarkable performer for Middlesex since his arrival from Surrey and an article on him by Angus Fraser can be found in this Newsletter.

In T20 we finished the group stages strongly but that was not before we had been on the wrong end of several painful defeats. In contrast to 1st Class cricket our batting, led by Max Holden and Stevie Eskinazi, was excellent. In the group stages we were the third highest run scorers.

To have scored that many runs and won only three matches suggests one thing. Yes, we conceded a lot of runs, more than any other county in fact.

This is the area where we missed not having an oversees player. In 2022 we had two overseas bowlers and with them we would have undoubtedly won another three or four games. Despite results progress was made in this form of the game and, if we can find the cash to hire a couple of overseas bowlers, we should fare much better in 2024.

50 over cricket is the format that frustrated most in 2023. As a club we do not lose many players to The Hundred and, in comparison to other counties, we have a strong squad. That we once again failed to reach the knock-out stages was disappointing. During the tournament it was great to see Martin Andersson score his first hundred for the club and there were good displays from Joe Cracknell, Higgins, Bamber and Luke Hollman. The tournament was won by Leicestershire, who showed what can be achieved with a modest squad.

Middlesex 2nd XI

The nature of county squads, which are becoming smaller, has meant that 2nd XI cricket is becoming a format for younger players. This means there are far more opportunities for our Academy players and several made encouraging progress in 2023.

Players to watch out for in 2024 include Sebastian Morgan, Noah Cornwall, Aaryan Sarwant, James Isbell, Ben Slater and Rhys Lewis.

The 2nd XI finished mid table in the 2nd XI championship and, for once, failed to get to Finals Day in the Second Eleven T20 Cup.


It is safe to say that Sunrisers introduction to the Women’s Professional Cricket Programme has been challenging. The logistics of managing the huge wedge of land that covers nine counties and stretches from London to East Anglia are considerable.

In 2023 we at last began to see reward for all the hard work and endeavour that has been put in. This came in the form of the Rachel Heyhoe Flint Trophy. In the previous two seasons the team had failed to win a game but in 2023 they won six and narrowly missed out on qualifying for the play-off round of the competition.

It is not a coincidence that the improvements came following the employment of Andy Tennant as head coach. Andy and his staff deserve great credit for the progress that is being made and they know much more needs to be done, particularly in T20 cricket.

The biggest congratulations, however, must go to the players.

Grace Scrivens was excellent with the bat and the highlight of the summer was her and Arianna Dowse both scoring hundreds in a 200 run partnership against The Blaze at Loughborough. Cordelia Griffiths was as consistent as ever with the bat and Eva Gray proved to be an excellent acquisition. The presence of South African great Dane van Niekerk can only have inspired the group too.

The player of the year, however, was Jodi Grewcock. Jodi started the season with three half-centuries in her first four innings, before shining with the ball towards the back end of the summer. She was awarded the PCA’s Most Valuable Player for July, after scoring 76 and taking 4 for 45 against the Southern Vipers. Her progress, along with that of several others leaves us all looking forward to 2024.

Middlesex Boys Pathway

The boys pathway was heavily affected by the weather in 2023. We run six sides between U11’s and U18’s and our U14’s, U16’s and U18’s play in the ECB National Competition. The U14’s finished 3rd in their group and the U18’s were inconsistent.

The U16’s triumphed, winning the ECB National Championship, which was a top effort.

The star batter was James Isbell, who scored over 1,250 runs in 2023. James passed 50 on 10 occasions during the season and on six occasions posted scores of 100+. He also struck a half century in our 2nd XI.

In the U18’s Seb Morgan scored an unbeaten 200 and Aaryan Sarwant 188*. Seb’s performances have gained him winter selection for England Young Lions.

With the ball Samarjeet Singh and Nilesh Bhandari were the top wicket-takers in their respective competitions, taking 26 and 24 wickets. Yet, the most remarkable figures of the season came from Aydin Sheikh who took 6-6 in five overs.

The performances of several players earned them recognition. Jack Nelson represented London and East at the ECB U15 Bunbury Festival.

Ben Salter, Rhys Lewis and Aaryan Sawant were all part of the Super 4’s U18 week.

Rhys Lewis played for England Young Lions invitational XI against Ireland and Australia U19s.

Nilesh Bhandari, Sebastian Morgan, Jack Nelson and James Isbell were all invited to be part of the U16 best vs best ECB weekend.

Middlesex Senior Women

The senior Middlesex women’s campaign was severely hampered by rain. Even so we got through the T20 Group Stages without too many scares – winning four games, including doing the double over Surrey – to make it to T20 Finals day! In the semi-final we beat Oxfordshire, in a rain affected game, on DLS, to face Kent in the Final. Unfortunately rain returned to wash out the final, which means we have had to share the T20 regional Trophy with Kent. Saskia Horley finished the T20 season scoring 112 runs without being out – well played.

In the 50 over London Championship, the story of the season was slightly different! Hampered by availability issues Middlesex lost 3 of their 50 over games with one being abandoned. The senior squad also played in the Sunrisers T20 festival at Felstead in August. We took a predominately young and inexperiencedteam to the festival and they performed admirably.

The women’s Player of the Year was Issy Routledge. Issy is an

impressive all-rounder who led by example. She is a genuinely caring person and someone who encourages her team-mates in every situation, even when the going gets tough, and there were a few tough moments this season! She is an impressive leader on and off the pitch, and her performances as captain, opening batter and bowler are testament to the hard work she has put in over the last two winters and seasons she’s been with Middlesex.

Middlesex Girls Pathway

The County Age Group Girls programme played 76 games of cricket in 2023 – with squads in age range from Under 11 to Under 18s. In total we won 38 lost 29 of these matches, with 2 no results. This was a fantastic return for all the players, coaches and managers.

The stats show we won more games than we lost but that’s really not what our programme is about. We want girls who play for Middlesex to develop a lifelong passion for the game and attachment to our club. We strive to give girls an opportunity to play the game rather than take the field and make up the numbers. The coaches and managers are very proud of what the players achieved. There were some incredible performances from our young players - far too many to mention.

In a first for the girls programme, we had an overseas tour to Jersey! Although there was a slight age mismatch in what was essentially our U16s playing Jersey Women. the players were outstanding ambassadors for our programme and the county.

There are plans for us to travel further afield.

The player of the year was Dia Nair, who averaged 52.43 in all cricket and took a number of useful wickets with the ball.

On behalf of the club we would like to thank all the coaches and managers who give so much to the girls and women’s game. Putting on this volume of games and getting players to places doesn’t happen on a whim and their endeavours should not go unnoticed.

Middlesex Disability Squads.

2023 was a landmark year for the Middlesex disability squads. The 1st XI were given the opportunity to play at The Oval and The Ageas bowl, and were scheduled toplay at Hove before the weather intervened. The 1st XI finished the season in 2nd place in their competition, which was a sound effort all round.

The 2nd xi got off to a bad start losing the opening2 games but bounced back and finished the season in 3rd place which, considering there were 7 new players in the squad, was a great achievement.

The Super 9s squad had a great start to their season, winning their first 3 games and topping the table, but a combination of bad weather, and a conceded game, left them without any match play for nearly 8 weeks. The lack of cricket affected their form and they lost the last two fixtures to finish in 3rd place, missing out on the regional final by 10 points .

This seasons Disability Premier League had representation from 16 Middlesex men’s players and 5 players in the Womens Disability Premier League, which is more than any other county in both men’s and women’s competitions.

Internationally Middlesex provided 7 players in the England deaf squad, 5 in the Learning Disability squad and 2 in the Physical Disability squad.

The disability player of the Year was Nasser Butt.