Middlesex bid for win over Kent held up by Lord's rain

LV County Championship Division Two, Lord's
Close, day two: Kent 87 & 232, Middlesex 153 & 120-1
Kent 3pts, Middx 3pts
Match scorecard
Live commentary
LV County Championship

Middlesex moved to within sight of victory over Kent at Lord's, despite rain preventing them completing the win inside two days.

After 23 wickets fell on day one, Kent resumed on 46-3 and saw Tim Murtagh (4-83) reduce them to 107-8, then 140-9.

They recovered to 232 all out thanks to a last wicket stand of 92 between Azhar Mahmood (50no) and Simon Cook (51).

But Middlesex were 47 short of victory on 120-1 when rain forced an early close, with Sam Robson 59 not out.

Fellow opener Scott Newman was caught behind by Geraint Jones off Joe Denly for 45 just before the close to end a decisive opening stand with Robson.

Nevertheless, Middlesex will be concerned they could yet be docked points after pitch liaison officer Tony Pigott convened an England and Wales Cricket Board pitch panel in the wake of the opening day's mayhem.

The panel, including fellow pitch officer Jack Birkenshaw and the ECB's pitch consultant Chris Wood, must decide if the well-grassed surface was not up to standard when the game began.

CLOSE OF PLAY SUMMARY

BBC London's Kevin Hand:

"A much better day for the batsmen as application was shown at last, but Kent left it too late in their innings to post Middlesex a particularly challenging total.

"Nonetheless, the opening stand between Sam Robson and Scott Newman was an outstanding display of batting in a match that has otherwise seen wickets fall too easily.

"The fact that only three wickets fell between lunch and the close should be evidence enough that this is not a poor pitch and points should not be docked."

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