Roland-Jones strikes to sink Surrey

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Toby Roland-Jones

Seamer Toby Roland-Jones claimed 4-38 as Middlesex cruised to a comprehensive innings victory over Surrey at Lord's

Toby Roland-Jones took an impressive 4-38 as Middlesex completed a thumping innings-and-42-run victory over London rivals Surrey at Lord’s to stretch their lead at the top of the LV= County Championship Division Two.

Middlesex captain Neil Dexter completed a memorable game, both for himself and his team, by using his own medium-pacers to provide excellent support for his frontline bowlers.

Dexter, who hit 145 on day one, finished with 3-46 and took the prized wicket of Steven Davies, who led the Surrey resistance with a superb 94. 

Seamer Roland-Jones wrapped up victory just before tea on day three when he removed Yasir Arafat and last man Jade Dernbach with successive balls. 

Surrey began day three on 34 for two, after Steven Finn’s double-strike on the second evening, and it was Roland-Jones who pegged them back to 73 for four after Davies and Gary Wilson had initially made good progress with a third-wicket stand of 72.

Opener Wilson edged a cut to wicketkeeper John Simpson, and then Hamilton-Brown nicked a loose stroke against Roland-Jones and was caught behind.

Tom Maynard, who scored an unbeaten 98 in Surrey’s first innings, was out just before lunch for 11, caught at one of the two short extra-covers that Dexter had cleverly positioned.

Corey Collymore trapped Gareth Batty lbw for 17 after playing across the line and Chris Jordan spoilt some stout resistance in his innings of 22 by swishing at Dexter and giving Simpson his third catch of the innings. 

Dexter then went around the wicket to end Davies’ classy 176-ball innings, the left-hander inside-edging onto his own stumps.

The England wicketkeeper had just hit Dexter for four and, in the previous over, swung Ollie Rayner’s off-spin over the Grand Stand boundary for six, but his demise spelled the end for Surrey. 

Arafat was taken at third slip by Dawid Malan, and Dernbach then skied a swipe at Roland-Jones’ next ball and was caught by Scott Newman, back-pedalling from gully.

It was Middlesex’s second successive innings victory against Surrey at Lord’s, where Surrey have not won since 1997, and after wins against both Essex and Derbyshire they are emerging as early favourites for promotion to Division One.

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