Thursday, 4th August 2005

Middlesex in command against Warwickshire at Lord's


Vs: Warwickshire

Match: TOM1

Venue: Lord's

Day 2

Middlesex ended the second day in a commanding position against Warwickshire at Lordís, leading by 206 runs with nine second innings wickets in hand.

Resuming their first innings on 62-4, Warwickshire were soon in further trouble when Stuart Clark had Loudon caught at second slip by Ben Hutton for 27, and the same bowler dismissed Frost, caught behind also for 27. This reduced the visitors to 85-6 with Stuart Clark having taken 5-38.

The veteran Dougie Brown found good support from Parker to see Warwickshire to lunch without further loss at 163-6 after 60 overs.

Chris Peploe, having bowled 13 overs for only 18 runs, switched to the nursery end after lunch, but it was Melvyn Betts who provided the breakthrough, when in his first over at the pavilion end, had Parker well caught at the wicket by Ben Scott for 41.

The follow-on having been avoided, Brown reached a well deserved half century before Chris Peploe had Carter caught at mid on for four. Ntini scored 12 off 22 balls before he was caught in the deep at the second attempt by Stuart Clark off the bowling of Peploe to reduce Warwickshire to 219-9.

Pretorius joined Brown at the wicket and these two added 52 runs for the last wicket before Brown holed out to long on eight runs short of his hundred. This gave Middlesex a first innings lead of 51 runs. Stuart Clark finished with 5-61 off 24 overs, Melvyn Betts 2-77 off 27 overs and Chris Peploe 2-54 off 23 overs.

Ed Smith, opening the innings with Ben Hutton, avoided a pair and reached 21 off 27 balls before he edged Ntini to second slip. Hutton, having earlier pulled Ntini for a six over mid-wicket was joined by Owais Shah.

It was good to see skipper Ben Hutton continuing his return to form, reaching his fifty off 70 balls (1 six & 5 fours). With Shah batting impressively to reach his half-century, also off 70 balls (and also with 1 six & 5 fours) they took Middlesex to 155-1 at the close of play after 40 overs. Ben Hutton was 78 not out and Owais Shah 51 not out.

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