Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Young stars shine in the 20:20 glow

A quick scan down the team sheets for the Middlesex v Lancashire 20:20 quarter final today and you would expect the Lightening to power their way to victory. With Stuart Law, Lou Vincent, Andrew Flintoff, Glenn Chappell, Sajid Mahmood and Dominick Cork it’s an impressive line-up. The Middlesex side in comparison looks a bit short on star quality and household names. At 21-4 it looked like Middlesex were in for an early exit with their top order gone. Step to the wicket 20 year old Dawid Malan and 21 year old Eoin Morgan. Morgan played very nicely hitting 33 from 31 balls. Dawid Malan played a superb innings; he made 103 from 54 balls with six 6s. He played correct cricket shots; his driving through the covers was very impressive and his lofted shots were more about controlled power than slogging. It was a fantastic knock and a great showcase for his talent. The 20:20 game seems to be finding relative unknowns and pushing them to the forefront.

Lancashire also made a bad start losing the first three wickets for 14. Stuart Law looked strangely out of form, odd given his century week ago. Another young Middlesex player, 19 year old Stephen Finn, bowled impressively. At 6’7” and with brisk pace he looks a real talent. Andrew Flintoff made 53 but Lancashire was 12 short at the end. The future looks rosy for Middlesex, both in this competition and for the future.

All eyes were, of course, on Andrew Flintoff. He bowled quickly and looked very fit. He ended with bowling figures of 4-0-17-3 including bowling overs 17 and 20. -- impressive. He started his innings looking tentative in the face of some good bowling. He weathered it and made 53 from 41 balls with three sixes. It was good to see Freddie back and in form. Just about right for his second Test return...

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