Middlesex get back to winning ways in RLC. 26th April 2019


                          Surrey   240        Middlesex   277

                            Middlesex won by 37 runs

                      Royal London One-Day Cup

                            Thursday 25th April 2019

                          Peter Moore at the Kia Oval

Middlesex made it three wins out of four in the Royal London One-Day Cup with a 37-run victory over Surrey at the Kia Oval.

A half-century on debut from Ross Taylor along with a crucial ninth wicket stand off 66 between Toby Roland-Jones and Nathan Sowter helped the visitors to 277. Despite 71 from Ben Foakes, Surrey fell short of their target thanks to some inspired bowling from Sowter and Tom Helm, with four wickets apiece.

With early morning rain around, there was a delayed start by ten minutes as the visitors won the toss and elected to bat.

Morne Morkel picked up the wickets of both openers with Paul Stirling(16) caught in the deep and Dawid Malan(19) bowled around his legs to leave Middlesex 55-2 in the ninth over.

Gareth Batty was introduced into the attack in the 12th over and with his fifth delivery stooped low to take a fine return catch to remove John Simpson(19). Steve Eskinazi(1) lasted just two balls before he steered the ball into the hands of first slip as the visitors struggled on 70-4.

Overseas signing Ross Taylor and Nick Gubbins pulled Middlesex around with a crucial partnership of 79 before Plunkett returned to bowl Gubbins(33) through the gate.

Experienced campaigner Batty returned to bowl George Scott(18) and the big wicket of Ross Taylor. The 35-year-old New Zealander’s valiant innings of 64 was ended by Batty when he attempted to cut a delivery but got a thin edge into the gloves of Ben Foakes. Three deliveries later the 41-year-old off spinner struck again when he trapped Tom Helm without scoring to finish with figures of 4-29.

The Middlesex tail offered some stubborn resistance with Nathan Sowter and Toby Roland-Jones adding 56 for the ninth wicket before Will Jacks had Sowter(31) lbw, but with some lusty blows from Steve Finn(13*) and late fireworks from Roland-Jones(45*) saw Middlesex post 277-9 in their allocated 50 overs.

Chasing 278 for victory, Surrey lost Mark Stoneman(7) in the second over to Tom Helm and Will Jacks(16) caught behind off Roland-Jones to leave the hosts 23-2 in the fourth over. South African Dean Elger flew into the country yesterday and his first task was to dig Surrey out of trouble. He had made 43 before falling to Sowter. Burns(49) went shortly afterwards to the off spin of Stirling as Middlesex hit back to reduce Surrey to 147-4 with almost twenty overs remaining. Sowter then yorked Jamie Smith(1) before Surrey debutant Jordan Clarke(1) was caught behind off Helm to leave the hosts 178-6 in the 37th over. It looked likely that if Surrey were to win, a lot would be on the shoulders of Ben Foakes, who bought up his third consecutive half century in this season’s competition. Leg spinner Sowter bowled Plunkett(12), with Surrey still 63 away from their target. With a tight finish in prospect Helm returned from the pavilion end to remove Conor McKerr(10) and the key wicket of Foakes(71) in the space of five deliveries to set up a Middlesex win, which duly happened when Sowter claimed the final wicket when Batty(2) holed out in the deep to give Middlesex victory by 37 runs with Sowter finishing with 4-37 and Helm 4-40.





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