North Midd skipper Nicoll is plotting a title push in 2018 after completing cup double
PUBLISHED: 15:00 11 September 2017
North Middlesex captain Tom Nicoll has already set his sights on the league title in 2018, after lifting the Middlesex Cup at the weekend.
The Premier Division club beat Harrow St Mary in a rain-affected final at Richmond to complete a knockout double following their T20 success in late July.
And Nicoll admitted it was a great way to end the campaign, saying: “It was a cracking win and there were some good celebrations.
“It’s been a really successful season, winning the Middlesex Cup and T20 and finishing third in the league.
“The target next year is to win the league. That’s what is missing for us.”
North Midd were put into bat after Nicoll lost the toss, but Joe Cracknell (20) and Luke Hollman made a solid enough start.
Hollman fell five runs short of a half-century, though, and saw his side collapse from 102-2 to 131-7, Evan Flowers departed for 27.
“It was a bit of a green pitch, but I would have batted,” said Nicoll. “Luke showed his talent against some tricky bowling, it was seaming around.
“It looked like we were struggling to get to 150, but Alex Hill and Will Nicoll batted beautifully and effectively won us the game.”
The eight-wicket pair put on 64, before Hill fell for 32, and Nicoll was unbeaten on 36 as North Midd closed on 208-8.
Joel Hughes then produced an impressive opening spell with the ball to reduce Harrow St Mary to 19-3 inside six overs, with Ethan Bamber having success at the other end with the total on 33.
Harrow’s fifth-wicket pair put on 36, as the weather took a turn for the worst and looked like frustrating North Midd.
Nicoll added: “Joel bowled like a dream to get their top order but the clouds were looming from about the 13th over.
“We put the spinners on and were rattling through the overs but raindrops started falling in the 19th over and Evan Flowers took a catch at point, when we almost hoping he would drop it!
“The next batsman took his time but the umpires carried on through some relatively heavy rain so we could get 20 overs and we were well ahead on the Duckworth Lewis.”
Harrow St Mary had reached 73-5 when rain stopped play after the first ball of the 21st over, with North Midd adjudged to be 42 runs ahead.