Match Report: Essex Eagles v Middlesex


Essex Eagles v Middlesex

Vitality Blast
The Cloudfm County Ground


Team News:

Essex Eagles: Tom Westley, Adam Wheater (wk), Dan Lawrence, Michael Pepper, Jimmy Neesham, Josh Rymell, Paul Walter, Simon Harmer (c), Aron Nijjar, Shane Snater, Sam Cook.

Middlesex: Sam Robson, Joe Cracknell, Daryl Mitchell, Max Holden, John Simpson (wk), Luke Hollman, Blake Cullen, Nathan Sowter, Tom Helm, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Steven Finn (c).

Match Details:

Umpires: Graham Lloyd & Ian Gould
Toss: Middlesex, who elected to bat
Result: Middlesex won by 9 runs

Match Highlights:

Match Reaction: Aron Nijjar

Match Report:

The Eagles Vitality Blast campaign came to a disappointing conclusion when they lost by 9 runs to Middlesex at The Cloudfm County Ground.

Faced with a total of 169-5, they stuttered to 160-9 and were left reflecting on their eighth defeat in the competition.

Having won the toss, the visitors lost Max Holden, who had made an unbeaten century in the corresponding fixture last year, for a duck to the last ball of the opening over, sent down by Sam Cook.

However, it was Aron Nijjar who once again underlined his value as a left-arm spinner. His 4 overs cost just 20 runs during which he claimed the wicket of top-scorer Sam Robson.

The opener struck 2 sixes and half-a-dozen fours while scoring 60 from 44 deliveries, he finally perished when he holed out to Jimmy Neesham at deep long-on.

Daryl Mitchell scored 44 which included 1 six among his 4 boundaries, whilst Joe Cracknell and John Simpson offered 24 each to provide the main contributions in support of Robson.

The second-wicket stand between Tom Westley (37) and Dan Lawrence (29) was broken immediately after the pair had completed a 50 partnership in 5.1 overs, before Michael Pepper teamed up with Westley to add 25 in 3.1 overs.

That partnership came to a close when Westley was bowled by Luke Hollman with the total on 93 in the 11th over and the innings subsided. The fourth wicket went down 2 runs later with the demise of Pepper before Jimmy Neesham and Josh Rymell raised hopes with a stand of 37 in 4.5 overs.

The one encouraging spot from the Eagles perspective was that of debutant Rymell, who struck 4 boundaries while making 21 from 17 balls.

But when he was dismissed, towards the end of the 17th over, the Eagles collapsed.

Neesham picked out deep mid-wicket having scored 20 and was quickly followed by 3 more wickets in 7 balls as the Eagles succumbed tamely.

Their hopes of lifting a trophy this season now rests with the Royal London One-day Cup. They start their campaign with a visit to Hampshire on Thursday before entertaining Middlesex at The Cloudfm County Ground once again next Sunday.