Middlesex bowler wants more games at Radlett

Olly Rayner, pictured earlier this year at Radlett with Middlesex 2s, wants to play more one-day gam

Olly Rayner, pictured earlier this year at Radlett with Middlesex 2s, wants to play more one-day games at Radlett. Picture: Danny Loo - Credit: Archant

Middlesex match-winner Olly Rayner is hopeful the county will play more games at Radlett after Friday’s 87 run win over Kent Spitfires in the Royal London One Day Cup.

Rayner took fours wickets as Middlesex bowled out Kent for 173 to successfully defend their first innings 260-9.

It was the first time Middlesex had played at Radlett since the wicket was re-laid last year and they quickly made it home, picking up their first win in this year’s competition.

Middlesex play their home games at Lord’s, which is owned by the Marylebone Cricket Club, but have out-grounds at Uxbridge, Richmond, Old Merchant Taylor’s and Radlett.

“It’s great that Middlesex can play in Hertfordshire, it was very enjoyable to come to Radlett, and we’d like to come back again soon to play more [List A] cricket,” said Rayner.

“It’s a good club, and the people here have made us feel at home. Don’t get me wrong, I love playing at Lords, and it is a superb venue, but it’s nice to play somewhere like Radlett and immediately feel at home.”

He added: “We’ll probably play a few more games here and it’ll be more like a home ground. At Lord’s we don’t get same pitch every week – it’s what they prepare for us. We wanted more grass [against Kent] and that’s what we’ve got. Lord’s is a home ground but this is our ground.”

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Middlesex’s last game at Radlett was in 2013 when they beat Yorkshire by six wickets. Since then, significant investment has upgraded Cobden Hill, and while bringing county championship or T20 Blast games to Radlett is currently out of the question, Rayner wants to see more one-dayers there.

“For four day cricket, the pitch has got a little bit longer to go,” he said. “But it can hold up for a day. We’ve had two one-dayers here and we’ve won both, as opposed to Uxbridge where we haven’t won in years.

“I’d rather try and get this up and running for our own good because it suits us better than our other out grounds.”

Batsman Sam Robson was also impressed.

“It was great to play at Radlett. It’s a great-set up here, and everyone has made us feel welcome. It would be good to come back and play more cricket here,” he said.