Q&A - Ed Smith And Dawid Malan
ED SMITH - Middlesex CCC, squad number 2
Q.) Having played a key role in captaining the side in the early stages of the Twenty20 campaign, you must have been extremely disappointed yourself to have not been able to lead the side out on finals day at the Rosebowl?
A.) Obviously, it was very disappointing I couldn't play on Finals Day. It's the kind of big day we all love playing in. But it was a great day for the team and the club. Everyone can feel proud of their efforts in the Twenty20 competition this season.
Q.) As non playing captain at finals day, you must have been going through a wide range of emotions, knowing that there was little you could do to influence the outcome of the day? Explain how it felt watching from the dug out?
A.) Pretty tense! But it all felt worth it when we won. It's very hard work captaining or coaching a county team - it's a 12 month job in which you are always trying to make the squad stronger. It's fantastic that Middlesex has won a major trophy after a 15 year wait.
Q.) You must be extremely proud of your team and of all your support staff. What do you feel has been the key to this year's T20 success for Middlesex?
A.) Key players knew their roles and performed when it mattered. The spin duo of Kartik and Udal were brilliant throughout. Tyron Henderson and Dirk Nannes - who were recruited partly with the Twenty20 in mind - won big games for us. Owais Shah played a great knock in the final, and of course Dawid Malan played a truly brilliant knock at the Oval. Eoin Morgan is a special talent, we've seen that all summer. Ben Scott is the best keeper I've ever seen and can win a game with two moments of magic. Ed Joyce showed a cool head and Tim Murtagh has been our leading all-round performer this season. Everyone else chipped in too. Basically that's a lot of good performers!
Q.) What will be your lasting memory from the finals day?
A.) That last ball! We were all just jumping around on the balcony.
Q.) In a year of such highs and outstanding performances, it's difficult to pick out any one individual for praise, however what key moments from the Twenty20 campaign do you look back on as club captain and see as pivotal to the success this year's run?
A.) Obviously, we were really struggling at 20-5 at the Oval. Eoin and then Dawid turned it all around for us. But the game at Uxbridge against Kent was also a top win against a very strong side.
Q.) Are you hoping to be fit and ready for a return in time for the forthcoming trips overseas, where you'll be representing England as 2008 Twenty20 club champions?
A.) I'm doing everything I can to fit as soon as possible. I'd love to get back for the winter stuff, but also if at all possible to help give us a boost in the the remaining Championship and Pro40 games. I am absolutely determined that we get back into Division 1 as soon as possible. I think we have all the elements to become a very good 4-day team as well as an incredibly strong white ball side.
DAWID MALAN - Middlesex CCC, squad number 29
Q.) Would you rate your knock in the quarter final at the Oval as your best and most important ever innings?
A.) I wouldn't rate it as my best, but definitely the most important innings of my career in the context of the game and what it meant for the club.
Q.) Explain how you felt when you saw what direction 'that throw' was heading off to in the last over of the final?
A.) Blind panic really - I tried to hide it, but inside it was just a feeling of dread and panic and a horrible thought that I had just thrown the game.
Q.) Given the amount of swing the throw generated, have you been giving the seamers some hints and tips on swing bowling since the final?
A.) Ha ha! No I haven't, but I did ask them why they weren't managing to swing it, as that ball moved a long way through the air!
Q.) What will be your lasting memory from finals day?
A.) The throw definitely will be worst memory, but the last three balls that Tyron bowled will be my lasting memory, as he won the game for us with those balls.
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