One-Day Cup: Eskinazi & Gubbins set up Middlesex win over Gloucestershire
|Royal London One-Day Cup, Lord's|
|Gloucestershire 283-7 (50 overs): Bracey 83, Howell 55 ; Murtagh 2-40, Roland-Jones 2-59|
|Middlesex 287-4 (42.2 overs): Eskinazi 107, Gubbins 98; Worrall 2-30|
|Middlesex (2 pts) won by six wickets|
Stevie Eskinazi scored an unbeaten 107 to help Middlesex beat Gloucestershire by six wickets in the One-Day Cup.
His fifth-wicket county record unbroken stand of 184 with Nick Gubbins (98 not out) took them beyond their opponents' 283-7 with 48 balls to spare at Lord's.
That looked unlikely when two wickets from Daniel Worrall helped reduce Middlesex to 36-3 in the eighth over.
But England one-day captain Eoin Morgan responded with a quickfire 38 before Eskinazi and Gubbins took charge.
In only his ninth List A game, it was Eskinazi's first hundred, dwarfing his previous best of 49. For Gubbins it is now back-to-back half-centuries having scored 56 in his side's opening victory over Essex.
Gloucestershire could not follow up their emphatic win over Surrey to start this season's competition with two wins in a row but had looked in a strong position to do so just after the halfway point of this match.
James Bracey (83) and Benny Howell (55) shared a stand of 111 for the fourth wicket to help set a difficult-looking target for the home side.
Gloucestershire's bowlers made early inroads to all of a sudden make that 284 appear daunting. But no-one told Eskinazi or Gubbins, who built on Morgan's cameo to ultimately secure a comfortable win with more than seven overs to spare.
Middlesex's Stevie Eskinazi:
"We knew it was a good wicket from the way James Bracey played for them and we did really well to restrict them at the back end.
"Conditions were still in the batsmen's favour with the way the ball races away here at Lord's and we knew if we built a partnership, we would have a chance if we took it deep enough and, when Gubbo came in, he was straight into his work.
"The century was really pleasing. With the conditions the way they were, when you are in and seeing it well, with that short boundary, it was nice to be able to knock a few around. It was a situation I've not been in, in List A cricket, so it was nice to get the knock in the bag."
Gloucestershire's Chris Dent:
"It was one that got away. With the bat we were short. None of us who got in went on and got the hundred that would have taken us past 300.
"It was a good wicket out there and we were short. But the fact that we got four early wickets sort of brought us into the game.
"If we'd got another couple anywhere in that middle period, we might have really been in it. Unfortunately, we couldn't build any pressure and on a decent wicket with good players at the crease they ticked it away."