Mid­dle­sex make ground on lead­ers Yorks

Harefield Gazette - - SPORT -

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.”

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