Thursday, 1st June 2006

Middlesex and Essex draw

FIXTURE

Vs: Essex

Match: SEC

Venue: Park Road, Uxbridge

Days 1-3

Middlesex and Essex drew their three-day Second XI Championship match at Park Road, Uxbridge on Tuesday May 30th 2006. The match was dominated by a number of injuries to both sides.

Essex won the toss and batted, and by lunch had reached 118-3. The afternoon session was dominated by Graham Napier 83 and Chris Peploe with 4-51, with some poor running from Essex as there were three run outs. Essex were 242 all out at tea. The session was marred though by a serious injury to Kabir Toor who suffered a broken cheekbone, while fielding at silly point, off a ball hit by Graham Napier off the bowling of Chris Peploe, which got under the grill of his helmet. Soon after this incident David Nash suffered a dislocated finger and Eoin Morgan had to take over behind the stumps. By the close, in the 39 overs remaining, Middlesex had reached 102-1.

On the second morning Mohammed Ali and Chris Peploe were required for the squad for the Middlesex first XI at Horsham. Shaun Levy replaced Chris Peploe, Mohammed Ali however was not replaced. 99 from Shaun Levy off 73 balls dominated this session, after Billy Godleman had gone for 50 (110-2) and Eoin Morgan for 76 (167-3), as Middlesex reached 275-5 at lunch.

This session was again hit by injuries as Jahid Ahmed pulled up with a thigh problem, Tim Yallop pulled a hamstring and Eoin Morgan broke a toe when he was lbw to Will Jefferson, who was also suffering from shin splints.

Middlesex were all out at tea on 420-9, as Kabir Toor was unable to bat, with a lead of 178 thanks to 107 from Paul Weekes and 33 from Chris Wright. Graham Napier with 3-58 did the damage for Essex.

At the close Essex had turned the deficit to a lead of 45, at 223 for 0 wicket from 44 overs with Grant Flower on 105 and Will Jefferson on 101. Joel Pope kept wicket for Middlesex and Jason Pooley fielded for Kabir Toor.

On the final morning Jefferson and Flower took their partnership to 291 when Flower went for 118, the highest for Essex’s 1st wicket in the Championship against Middlesex. From 350-4, when Will Jefferson went for 182 just after lunch, Essex collapsed to 442-9 at tea, which was all out as Tim Yallop was unable to bat, this due to 4-64 from Chris Wright and despite 71 not out from Merv Westfield.

This set Middlesex an unlikely target of 265 from 39 overs, despite 3-25 from Graham Napier which reduced them to 93-4, the match finished as draw at 5.40pm with Middlesex on 110-4, with 42 from Shaun Levy off 45 balls.

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