Close, Day 1: Notts: 345/7

FULL SCORECARD

Alex Hales scored a responsible, near three-hour 73 at Lord’s today in an innings that has increased his chances of retaining his place in England’s team for the first Test of their early-summer series against Sri Lanka, which starts on May 19.

Hales, who was Alastair Cook’s opening partner in the winter Test series in South Africa, struck a six and ten fours to help Nottinghamshire reach 345 for 7 after seeing Steven Mullaney fall in the first over of their Specsavers County Championship Division One match.
 
Michael Lumb hit an excellent 78 and added 107 for Notts’ third wicket with Hales, but fast bowler Toby Roland-Jones took two wickets in his tenth over to bring Middlesex back into the game after Steven Finn had endured a torrid time by conceding 61 runs from his first ten overs.
 
Roland-Jones finished with 3 for 57 but Finn’s figures at the end of a frustrating day were 2 for 89 from 22 overs and Middlesex only had themselves to blame for dropping both Samit Patel, on 11, and Chris Read, on six.
 
Patel, who reached stumps on a fine 86 not out, from 131 balls and with two sixes and nine fours, added a useful unbroken 54 with Brett Hutton, who is unbeaten on 23, and escaped when he edged off spinner Ollie Rayner and John Simpson, the wicketkeeper, could not hold on. Read collected four runs when he nicked Roland-Jones and saw the ball fly away between Simpson and first slip James Franklin.
 
At least Finn struck with his second delivery with the second new ball, having Read caught in the gully for 38, while Nick Compton took an even better catch at third slip in Finn’s next over to remove Stuart Broad for 7.
 
Of concern to England’s selectors, however, will be Finn’s first 16 overs costing 77 runs and the fact he could not initially provide the necessary support for Roland-Jones, who had 3 for 22 when he sent back Hales and Riki Wessels in the same over, and Murtagh, who allowed just two scoring strokes in his first seven overs.
 
Choosing to bat in warm sunshine, Notts saw Mullaney depart lbw to the fifth ball of the match, with Murtagh nipping one back up the Lord’s slope after being hit through the covers for four from his previous ball.
 
Greg Smith, with 29, added 57 with Hales for the second wicket, against some testing new ball bowling from Murtagh, before edging Roland-Jones to second slip where Rayner took an excellent low catch.
 
Lumb swung off spinner Rayner for six over the short Tavern boundary, and also included nine fours in his 124-ball innings, while Franklin’s four overs of left-arm seam immediately before lunch were taken for 25 runs.
 
Hales, shortly before lunch, hit Rayner back over his head for four before creaming Franklin to the extra cover ropes during the same final over of the session in which Lumb also plundered two legside fours from the last two balls.
 
Rayner, whose first seven overs had cost only 17 runs, was then hit for two fours and a six by Hales in an expensive eighth over but, driving over his 124th ball, the Notts opener fell to a full-length ball from Roland-Jones, who five balls later slanted one down the slope to have Wessels lbw for a duck.
 
And Rayner, in his first match of the campaign, stayed calm under pressure and deserved his success when a quicker ball trapped Lumb lbw after a 40-run stand with Patel. At 209 for 5 it looked as if it was going to Middlesex’s day but Patel’s early let-off, and the chance offered by Read that went begging, tipped the balance of the game towards Nottinghamshire.

 

Tea, Day 1: Notts: 209/5

FULL SCORECARD

Alex Hales scored a near three-hour 73 at Lord’s today in an innings that has increased his chances of retaining his place in England’s team for the first Test of their early-summer series against Sri Lanka, which starts on May 19. 

Hales, who was Alastair Cook’s opening partner in the winter Test series in South Africa, struck a six and ten fours to help Nottinghamshire reach 209 for 5 by tea after seeing Steven Mullaney fall in the first over of their Specsavers County Championship Division One match.
 
Michael Lumb hit an excellent 78 and added 107 for Notts’ third wicket with Hales, but fast bowler Toby Roland-Jones took two wickets in his tenth over to bring Middlesex back into the game after Steven Finn had endured a torrid time by conceding 61 runs from his first ten overs.
 
Choosing to bat in warm sunshine, Notts saw Mullaney depart lbw to the fifth ball of the match, with Tim Murtagh nipping one back up the Lord’s slope after being hit through the covers for four from his previous ball.
 
Greg Smith, with 29, added 57 with Hales for the second wicket, against some testing new ball bowling from Murtagh, before edging Roland-Jones to second slip where Ollie Rayner took an excellent low catch.
 
Lumb swung off spinner Rayner for six over the short Tavern boundary, and also included nine fours in his 124-ball innings, while James Franklin’s four overs of left-arm seam immediately before lunch were taken for 25 runs.
 
Hales, shortly before lunch, hit Rayner back over his head for four before creaming Franklin to the extra cover ropes during the session’s final over in which Lumb also plundered two legside fours from the last two balls.
 
Rayner, whose first seven overs had cost only 17 runs, was then hit for two fours and a six by Hales in an expensive eighth over but, driving over his 124th ball, the Notts opener fell to a full-length ball from Roland-Jones, who five balls later slanted one down the slope to have Riki Wessels lbw for a duck.
 
And Rayner, who saw Samit Patel, 20 not out at tea, survive a caught-behind chance when on 11, fully deserved his success when a quicker ball trapped Lumb lbw after a 40-run stand with Patel.

 

Lunch, Day 1: Notts: 115/2

FULL SCORECARD

Alex Hales scored 46 not out at Lord’s this morning in an innings likely to have an impact on whether he is selected by England for the first Test of their early-summer series against Sri Lanka, which starts on May 19.

Hales, bidding to keep his England Test place after opening with Alastair Cook in South Africa during the winter, helped Nottinghamshire to recover to 115 for 2 by lunch after losing his fellow opener Steven Mullaney in the opening over of their Specsavers County Championship Division One match against Middlesex. 

Choosing to bat in warm sunshine, Notts saw Mullaney depart lbw to the fifth ball of the match, with Tim Murtagh nipping one back up the Lord’s slope after being hit through the covers for four from his previous ball. 

Greg Smith, with 29, added 57 with Hales for the second wicket before edging Toby Roland-Jones to second slip where Ollie Rayner took an excellent low catch.

Michael Lumb then hit an unbeaten 31 from just 28 balls  to keep Hales company until the interval, with the Notts top-order batsmen – bar Mullaney – tucking into some friendly offerings from an out-of-sorts Steven Finn, whose eight overs in the session cost 46 runs, and then James Franklin, whose four overs were taken for 25 runs.

Hales, shortly before lunch, hit Rayner back over his head for four before creaming Franklin’s left arm seam to the extra cover boundary during the session’s final over in which Lumb also plundered two legside fours from the last two balls.