Surrey stormed to a 30 run win against Middlesex to win their first T20 match at Lords since 2014. The South Londoners moved top of the group after smashing a devastating 218 runs, thanks to a superb 67 from Hashim Amla.
The Three Feathers got off to the perfect start, after being put into bat with Amla, and Will Jacks struck a hundred run opening partnership inside ten overs.
Jacks struck five sixes, including two into the building site beneath the JP Morgan Media Centre, on his way to a 28 ball fifty.
Having only lost two wickets, 15 overs in Surrey let loose. A 21 run over from Martin Anderssson moved the visitors through the gears. A quickfire 25 from 10 balls from England test opener Rory Burns pushed Surrey past 150, before Jamie Overton exploded.
The Surrey bowler made his case as a counter attacking all rounder by striking back to back sixes off Steven Finn. First the ball landed in the building site at long on, then the ball was deposited into the top tier of the grand stand.
In response, Middlesex looked to attack immediately. Several huge strikes from Stephen Eskinazi provided a glimmer of hope, but the early loss of Max Holden made life difficult for the hosts.
Blast debutant Joe Cracknell left his mark at Lord’s by denting the scorer’s box with an enormous six. However, when he was bowled for 28 at the halfway stage Middlesex were down and out.
Back to back sixes in the 12th over by John Simpson against Gareth Batty ignited Middlesex, and the Middlesex keeper and Eskinazi then began hitting boundaries for fun.
Eskinazi looked particularly dangerous. He brought up his 50 off 28 before taking Overton for 16 in an over. The pair brought up the 50 partnership in 27 balls, and the Middlesex run rate creeped above ten briefly in the fifteenth over.
Middlesex brought up the 150 in the first ball of the sixteenth over, reaching the landmark on the same number of balls as Surrey did although they were unable to accelerate in the same way the visitors did.
Simpson fell for 31 (18 balls) before Overton produced a spectacular run out to get rid of Eskinazi for 77, ending Middlesex’s chances of a spectacular run chase.
Eskinazi said: “It’s very difficult when you play a belter of an over and the run rate still goes up.
“I think a Middlesex side of the past could have petered out there for 130-140, so a lot of positives going forward into next year.
“We have shown real glimpses of some of the stuff we know we have in our dressing room, but struggling to get over the line consistently.
“It’s an interesting season, but we have a massive amount to play for these last few games. Three good performances and we can go into the break with some real positives.”
Surrey opener Jacks said: “We are really happy, we knew a win today would take us top.
“It was a really important game with a couple of teams on our tail. We’ve been gradually improving and today was a really good performance.
“I’ve been up and down in the T20 format over the years, I feel like I’m starting to get a rhythm to be more consistent.
“The top five all got over 25, which you don’t see often in T20.
“We are definitely not done yet, with some tough games coming up. We weren’t good enough in the four day format, so to make the quarter finals – or finals day – would be great.”