INTERVIEW: Modest Malan hits ton as Middlesex aim for upper hand against London rivals Surrey
PUBLISHED: 23:32 20 May 2017 | UPDATED: 23:36 20 May 2017
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Middlesex's Dawid Malan hit his first ton of the summer as his side performed well on the second day of their county championship match against Surrey at Lords.
Malan, 29, formed a good partnership with Seaxes’ sixth-wicket partner and captain James Franklin with the pair contributing 92 to leave the home side on 296-5 – only 17 runs behind their south London rivals.
With only three overs before stumps Malan reached his century – which came off 169 balls which included 15 fours - while Franklin hit his unbeaten 63 from only 67 deliveries.
Speaking afterwards a modest Malan said: “It was nice [to reach 100].
“It’s been the story of the season. I’ve hit the ball well, I just haven’t been able to get a score until now.
“It’s nice to turn the 20s and the 30s into something bigger and contribute to the team in a game that we need to win.
“Their attack tested us a lot until Frankie [James Franklin] came in and played beautifully to get the momentum back to us.
“It’s always nice to play against Surrey – you play against these guys and with these guys for the Lions and so on – so we all know each other pretty well and it was quite a good battle out there today.”
Team man Malan also had time to praise his side’s bowlers who took the visitors final five wickets for only 48 runs, with the South Londoners starting the second day on 265/5 with the legendary Kumar Sangakkara well placed on 113 not out.
However, Franklin snaffled the Sri Lankan master with the help of an Olly Rayner catch after he only had time to add a single run to his score – with the Middlesex captain eventually taking 4-40.
The haul pushed the Wellington-born 36-year-old Kiwi to 472 First Class wickets, only 28 short of a landmark 500.
Malan was full of praise for the bowling exploits of his batting partner. He said: “I thought our bowlers stuck to their guns this morning especially after yesterday when we strayed away from our plans a little bit but they were right on it today.
“It just proves that if our bowlers stick to their plans here at Lords they can always get results – so all credit needs to go to them for restricting them to 313 by talking 48-5 this morning.
“The pitch has got a little bit more in it, it’s getting slower and slower as it’s going on and sort of dying a little bit – but there is still a little bit if you bowl the right number of balls in the right areas.”
With Middlesex only 17 behind with five wickets remaining Malan is looking to score as many runs in tomorrow’s crucial first session on day three. He added: “The plan of attack on the third day is to get another 120 and stick to our plans and bowl as well as we can.
“There’s no reason why we can’t put them under a lot of pressure and hopefully give us something to chase on the last day.”