Middlesex’s win over Kent will stand after ‘silly Sunday’

Middlesex have been told they will keep the 19 points they earned by beating Kent at Lord’s, despite an astonishing first day of the County Championship Division Two match when 23 wickets fell.

Having been asked to bat by Middlesex skipper Neil Dexter, Kent were skittled for just 87 on Sunday, batting for only 31.4 overs as Tim Murtagh recorded figures of 5-27 to rip through the visitors’ batting.

Middlesex fared little better despite being 76-1 at one stage as Azhar Mahmood’s 6-36 helped dismiss them for 153, a lead of just 66.

By the end of an incredible first day, however, Kent were on 43-3 and although they recovered to post 232 all out on Monday, Middlesex were left with a victory target of just 167 which they eventually reached early on Tuesday morning to win by nine wickets.

The England and Wales Cricket Board’s pitch panel, convened by pitch liaison officer Tony Pigott after the dramatic opening day, ruled that the surface did not warrant a points penalty, although the panel did mark the well-grassed pitch ‘below average’ for producing excessive seam movement.

Middlesex’s fortunes have not been so favourable in the Friends Life t20 South Group, having lost out to Kent on Saturday night at Canterbury, a sixth defeat in seven matches so far.

The hosts were 21-6 but struggled to 115 all out, and the Panthers failed to chase it down as they limped to 106 all out to lose by nine runs.