Nottinghamshire embark on the second half of their LV= county championship season with a home fixture against Middlesex, beginning on Saturday 14th June.
Notts have picked up two wins, fallen to two losses and completed four draws during their initial eight championship matches and currently lie in fourth spot, on 96 points. This week’s visitors are one place and eight points better off on 104 points, 9 behind the current leaders, Somerset.
You Need To Know
The hours of play on the first day of the match (Saturday 14th June), are from Midday until 7pm, due to Nottinghamshire’s T20 commitments the previous evening.
Lunch will therefore be from 2pm until 2.40 and the remaining sessions will follow the normal pattern.
Subsequent days will revert to the usual 11am start time.
Head To Head
The two county sides have met on 110 previous occasions in Nottinghamshire, with all but three of them taking place at Trent Bridge.
Middlesex were the victors by 61 runs at Elm Avenue, Newark in 1970, Notts won by 192 runs, the following year, at Worksop, a ground which had staged a draw in 1963.
Perhaps unusually, the away team have had the better of things over the years, with Middlesex boasting a 34-24 winning advantage, with the other 52 matches ending in draws.
Nottinghamshire’s relatively poor record is undoubtedly due to them going without a single victory between 1934 and 1955.
In fact, since that 1934 success, Notts have only beaten Middlesex at home on eight occasions.
The most recent of those was in 2006 when Charlie Shreck produced his career-best figures of 8-31 as Middlesex were bowled out for just 49 in their second innings, to lose by an innings and 33 runs.
Overall, home and away, there have been 223 scheduled matches. Middlesex lead the head-to-head by 77 wins to 55, with 89 matches drawn. In both 1979 and 1987 the matches at Lord’s were abandoned without a ball being bowled.
Middlesex have held the upper hand in recent times – and in pretty emphatic fashion as well.
The last time they met was earlier this season, at Lord’s. Notts made 326, with Steven Finn taking 5-91, despite half-centuries for James Taylor, Riki Wessels and Steven Mullaney.
163 from Sam Robson and an unbeaten 108 from John Simpson gave the home side an advantage of 113 on first innings.
Tim Murtagh (5-61) and Finn again (4-82) helped bowl Notts out for 224 and Robson and Chris Rogers knocked off the 112 needed to complete a 10-wicket win.
That margin of victory emulated Middlesex’s success at Trent Bridge last April.
Toby Roland-Jones took 6-63 in the first innings of the match and Simpson was again in the runs, making 97 not out but it was the second innings spell of 5-27 by Neil Dexter that was the significant factor in Nottinghamshire’s demise. 110 were required in the final innings of the match and half centuries from Rogers and Robson completed the rout.
Two Nottinghamshire players turned in sensational performances in the 2002 win over Middlesex at Trent Bridge. Kevin Pietersen scored 254 not out, the highest innings of his career to date. Australian leg-spinner Stuart MacGill then claimed 14 wickets (6-54 and 8-111).
Apart from Pietersen’s knock, four other Nottinghamshire batsmen have registered double-hundreds against Middlesex in Nottingham, Arthur Shrewsbury (267 in 1887), Charlie Harris (234 in 1933), Joe Hardstaff jnr (243 in 1937) and Derek Randall, who followed his first innings score of 209 in 1979 with an innings of 146, the only instance of a Notts batsman scoring centuries in both innings against the London side.
The most recent Nottinghamshire debutant in the home series of matches was 16-year old Bilal Shafayat, who made 72 and 24 in 2001. Just six days away from his 17th birthday Bilal seemed on course for a debut century until trapped lbw by former England spinner Phil Tufnell.
Nottinghamshire’s highest-ever individual score came against Middlesex, when Walter Keeton made an undefeated 312 in 1939, in a match played at The Oval (Lord’s was being used for the annual Eton v Harrow fixture, which was given priority).
Played For Them Both
A significant number of players have represented both counties over the years, amongst them, Mike Harris, Bob White, Harry Latchman, Lance Klusener, David Alleyne, Dirk Nannes, Scott Newman and Stephen Fleming, who scored 151 for Middlesex in the 2001 draw at Trent Bridge, before moving north to skipper Notts to the title in 2005.
Adam Voges, who has been associated with Notts in recent years, spent some time with Middlesex last summer, playing in four county championship and 10 T20 matches for them.
Did You Know?
The 1927 fixture at Lord’s between Middlesex and Notts was the first ever championship match to have ball-by-ball commentary. Listeners heard Pelham Warner’s description of an opening day that saw Notts make 381, before the home side closed on 44-0. The remaining two days weren’t covered but ended with a ten-wicket success for Nottinghamshire.
Notts v Middlesex
Highest Team Total
Notts 642-9 dec (2006) Lord’s
Middlesex 621-9 dec (1931) Trent Bridge
Lowest Team Total
Notts 40 (1895) Lord’s
Middlesex 32 (1882) Lord’s
Highest Individual Score
Notts 312* WW Keeton (1939) The Oval
Middlesex 245 WJ Edrich (1938) Lord’s
Best Bowling in Innings
Notts 8-31 CH Shreck (2006) Trent Bridge
Middlesex 9-32 JT Hearne (1891) Trent Bridge
Best Bowling in Match
Notts 14-165 SCG MacGill (2002) Trent Bridge
Middlesex 15-154 JT Hearne (1893) Trent Bridge
This match will be Chris Read’s 300th in first class cricket. James Taylor needs 9 runs to reach 7,500.
Peter Siddle has taken 345 first class wickets, Samit Patel has taken 198 and Ajmal Shahzad has taken 193.
Tickets may be purchased from the gate at a cost of £14 for Adults, £10 for Senior Citizens and Under 21s and £7 for Juniors.
Dave Bracegirdle will provide ball-by-ball commentary from all of Nottinghamshire's matches this season on behalf of BBC Radio Nottingham. Follow him on twitter @bracecricket