Preview: Essex face Surrey in top-of-table County Championship clash

Essex's Jamie Porter has been in fine form. Picture: PA SPORT

Essex's Jamie Porter has been in fine form. Picture: PA SPORT - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Essex look to continue their fine form when they entertain Surrey in a top-of-the-table County Championship clash at The Cloudfm County Ground tomorrow (11am).

The home side sit proudly at the top of the league following their comprehensive thrashing of Hampshire inside three days and that success meant they are the only side in the division to have won two matches in the competition so far, in addition to already reaching the semi-finals of the Royal London One Day Cup.

Their advantage over Surrey is a slender one, just a single point, and the Brown Caps are sure to prove daunting opponents.

Essex head coach Chris Silverwood said: “Coming off the back of a good win against Hampshire and a successful one-day campaign, we go into the match full of confidence which is really nice and the lads are really up for the Surrey game.

“We are still very aware that there is a lot of work in front of us and, coming up against a side that are second in the division, means that this is a big game for us. But it’s one that we are really looking forward to.”

He added: “They’ve done really well and it’s great to see us top of the league and in the semi-final of the 50-over competition but we’ve achieved that by playing some really good cricket.

“The two wins in the Championship have both come inside three days and there were some more stand-out performances in the last match when we beat Hampshire.

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“Obviously the way that Alastair Cook and Tom Westley batted showed how valuable runs were on that wicket and that illustrates how well they played.

“And I thought that Jamie Porter bowled exceptionally well from a seaming point of view and was ably backed up by the rest of the guys.

“Surrey are obviously a good side but to be honest every match in the First Division brings challenges, we’ve already come up against some tough sides but the great thing is that we are learning on our feet so far and we are also learning through winning.

“Hopefully that will continue but there is a lot of cricket in front of us, it’s still early days. We have to keep doing the basics right, stick to our game plans and keep doing the good things really well.”

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