Curran brothers punish Middlesex as Surrey kick off Blast campaign with victory
Middlesex vs Surrey
Vitality Blast South Group Thursday 25th May 2023
Peter Moore at Lords
Surrey 199 for 6 Middlesex 126
Surrey won by 73 runs
Surrey opened up their Vitality Blast campaign with a crushing 73 run victory in the London derby against Middlesex at Lords.
The Curran brothers put on a stand of 118 in 11 overs to take the game away from the hosts after Will Jacks had earlier made a quickfire 43. Jacks also starred with the ball picking up 3-17 as Middlesex were bowled out for 126.
On a glorious late May evening, with both sides opening up their campaign in the competition, Surrey won the toss and elected to bat.
The visitor’s opened up with Will jacks and Sunil Narine. The pair put on 40 inside five overs, when young 19-year-old slow left armer Nathan Fernandes- making his first team debut for the county- had Narine(10) caught at cover in just his second delivery.
Jacks(43) was scoring the lion’s share of the runs before he fell in the deep to a superb diving catch low down by Tom Helm off Martin Andersson’s third ball.
Tom Curran joined his brother Sam in the middle with the pair starting to accelerate the run rate, with Tom taking five boundaries in a row of Ryan Higgins.
Youngster Fernandes who had bowled only two overs for just nine runs from the nursery end was introduced back into the attack from the pavilion end and immediately was hit for 18 runs including two sixes and a boundary off the blade of Sam’s bat.
The pair put on a century partnership off just 56 balls with the Middlesex attack wilting, not helped by bowling six wides and four no balls.
The eldest of the Curran brothers Tom, brought up his 50 off 31 balls with the partnership stretching to 118 in the 19th over when Tom Curran(50) was caught and bowled by Higgins for a half century off 33 balls including eight fours.
Brother Sam feel caught in the deep after hitting 68 off 47 balls including two six’s and seven fours in an entertaining knock from the 24-year-old back from an unproductive stint in the IPL for Punjab Kings.
Despite Middlesex and Helm picking up three wickets in the final over, Surrey finished on 199 for 6 in their allocated twenty overs.
In pursuit of 200 for victory, disaster struck for Middlesex as early as the third ball of their reply when Stephen Eskinazi(1) was run out attempting to take a sharp single.
The home side needed to rebuild after the early set back, but in the fourth over Joe Cracknell(12) perished in the deep to leave Middlesex 27 for 2.
It was down to Pieter Malan and Max Holden to rescue Middlesex. The pair had taken the score to 61 before Malan(30) holed out to deep square cover.
Higgins went for a run a ball seven before perishing in the deep of Jacks who then bowled Luke Hollman around his legs for a duck two balls later.
Wickets continued to fall quickly with Holden’s fine knock off 43 ended by Sunil Narine after a wild swish off the West Indian.
Narine then removed Andersson(4) before Jacks returned to bowl Fernandes(2) as Surrey can within touching distance of a comfortable victory.
It wasn’t long before Surrey were celebrating their opening win in the competition with John Simpson falling for 15 and Blake Cullen(4) inside three deliveries off Gus Atkinson who finished with figures of 3 for 20 alongside Jack’s fine haul of 3 for 17, with the hosts dismissed for 126 to give Surrey victory by 73 runs.