Reigning English title winners Middlesex instigated a bowling fightback on day two of the Champion County clash in Abu Dhabi, although the MCC still hold the balance of power.
Seam duo Harry Podmore and James Harris shared five wickets to stoke the Middlesex revival and reduce the MCC to 145-7 at the close. Despite their batting woes, the MCC still lead by 298 runs.
Resuming their first innings on 9-1, England Lions batsman Dawid Malan was the only Middlesex player to notch a half-century, although wicketkeeper John Simpson struck 49, as they were dismissed for 179. Such was Middlesex’s underwhelming showing at the crease that only four of their batsmen – Malan, Simpson, Nick Gubbins and Tom Helm – reached double figures.
Somerset new-ball duo Lewis Gregory and Craig Overton starred for the MCC, taking a combined nine scalps. Gregory snared a five-for, while spinner Jack Leach ensured all 10 Middlesex wickets were secured by Somerset players.
Middlesex, however, roared into life and appeared determined to work their way back into the contest as they reduced the MCC to 76-5 and then 100-6 as wickets continued to tumble. Yorkshire opener Adam Lyth top scored with 42, while Gregory and Overton combined with effect once more by partaking in a 40-run partnership before the former was bowled by Helm before stumps.