Middlesex chase down 406 – Joyce makes 1000

As if today’s news couldn’t get any better, Middlesex have chased down an amazing 406 to beat Glamorgan – absolutely brilliant, albeit whilst batting on a road. The best news of all, though, is Ed Joyce has made it to 1000 runs for the season – as I hoped he would – and I’m over the moon. His innings today of 70 came from just 61 balls, on top of his first-innings 155 – 225 runs in the match, without being dismissed. Phenomenal.

I’m not really a stats-man, but here are some for those that are. He’s made 1002 runs (1000 runs in a season is the benchmark for batsmen in England – in case some weren’t aware) @ 91 per innings. Curiously, 4 of the top 6 run scorers this season are English – which hasn’t always been the case, and is especially encouraging given the number of overseas players there are this season (and indeed Aussies). They are (Englishman highlighted in Bold):

Name                Mat    I  NO  Runs   HS     Ave     SR 100 50   Ct St Team

EC Joyce              7   13   2  1002  192   91.09  67.06   2  8    5  - MIDDX
AN Cook               9   16   0   901  195   56.31  54.70   3  3    5  - MCC/ESSEX
M van Jaarsveld       8   14   1   858  262*  66.00  56.18   4  2   12  - KENT
SA Newman             8   13   0   842  219   64.76  69.24   4  -    6  - SURREY
A Flower              9   14   4   823  188   82.30  49.69   3  3    5  - MCC/ESSEX
IR Bell               9   14   3   823  231   74.81  58.57   2  4    4  - WARWICKS/ENG

At this stage in the season, to see an Englishman (ok – an Irishman, but he qualifies in about 2 weeks time) be first to 1000 runs (I think he gets an award for this, too – anyone know?) is really encouraging news, as is the number of young batsmen in the top 20. We’re generally accustomed to seeing the Old Stagers, like Ramprakash and Hick, in the top 5 – but they’re languishing miles behind having made 622 and 620 runs respectively. English Cricket is certainly becoming stronger and stronger with every season, and players – like Joyce, Shah, Key, Bell, Newman – are thriving.

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