Middlesex see long run end at Lancashire
PUBLISHED: 16:19 12 June 2017 | UPDATED: 16:19 12 June 2017
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Defending champions suffer first loss since September 2015
Defending county champions Middlesex saw their 21-match unbeaten run brought to an end by Lancashire, going down by eight wickets in the north west.
A first Championship five-wicket haul for Stephen Parry and a timely knock from England opener Haseeb Hameed ensured there were no major scares for the hosts as they wrapped up victory at Southport.
It capped a fine performance from Lancashire who shrugged off their recent drubbing by Yorkshire to inflict a first Championship defeat on the visitors since September 2015 in what was effectively a three-day affair after Saturday’s total washout.
Hameed, who has been in awful form for his county this season, scored a characteristically patient unbeaten 38 from 81 balls as Lancashire passed their target of 108 with a flourish thanks to straight six from skipper Steven Croft who finished 34 not out.
Faced with the modest total, Lancashire lost their first wicket in the final over before the lunch interval when wicket keeper Alex Davies edged Toby Roland-Jones to his fellow glove man John Simpson for 13.
Following the interval Liam Livingstone joined Hameed at the crease with the 23-year-old celebrating his call-up to England’s squad for the three-match NatWest T20 series against South Africa with a characteristically energetic 22 before a three-ball sequence saw him dropped at second slip by James Franklin and hit on the gloves by Roland-Jones before edging one behind.
The day had started with Middlesex holding a slender 27-run lead with four wickets in hand, but that became three after half an hour’s play when James Harris edged a steepling delivery from Ryan McLaren to Davies for 19.
Just 15 minutes later and Davies had another victim when Dawid Malan’s resistance ended following a battling 52 as he got another good one from McLaren.
That left Middlesex on 180-8 and staring down the barrel, but Tim Murtagh and Roland-Jones had other ideas as they biffed and bludgeoned their way to a 49-run partnership before Murtagh was stumped off the bowling of Parry for 27.
A lead of 100 gave Middlesex a whiff of a chance if they could add another 30-40 runs, but it wasn’t to be as Parry picked up his fifth wicket with Roland-Jones trapped lbw for 31 off 32 balls.
Middlesex return to Lord’s to host Yorkshire in their next match on Monday, June 19.