Middlesex make ground on leaders Yorks
MIDDLESEX skipper James Franklin declined to get carried away after his side gained eight points on leaders Yorkshire, who are 30 ahead with a game in hand.
The Lord’s side consolidated second place in the County Championship when they secured victory over Durham by 71 runs.
James Harris finished the second innings with five for 71, his third five-wicket haul of the season, which included nine for 34 in the home win against Durham.
Neil Dexter was the star with the bat as he scored 112 in the second innings to go with his first innings half century to leave Middlesex as Yorkshire’s nearest contenders.
“We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves,” Franklin said. “But there are still a lot of points to play for and if can keep chipping away we might be able to put a bit of pressure on them.
“This was a very satisfying win. Scott Borthwick batted beautifully and they would have fancied themselves with five wickets left and 115 needed, but we stuck at it and we knew if we could get one wicket more would follow.
“James Harris is a perfectionist and he will not be satisfied, but he’s a wicket-taker and I can’t remember a spell this season when he hasn’t taken one.”
Dexter’s ton was timely as his contract expires at the end of this season and he had been out of the team due to a lack of form.
He added: “I’ve been out of the team for a while and it was good to take my chance and contribute. Sometimes you can over complicate things as a batsman so I tried not to think about it too much.
“I tried to be a bit more positive and move my feet a bit better. You had to get forward on that pitch, but it comes off quite slowly when it’s back of a length.”