Timothy James Murtagh
August 02, 1981, Lambeth, London
Left hand bat
Right arm fast medium
John Fisher, Purley
Tim Murtagh is a bustling swing bowler with a marching run-up who late in a career that has stretched deep into his thirties has enjoyed the chance to play international cricket with Ireland. His pace is lively without being express but he has become a valued member of Middlesex's attack - and one of the most reliable new-ball bowlers on the county circuit. He can also be a destructive lower order hitter.
Though now a stalwart at Lord's, he actually came through Surrey's age-group sides and was a member of the England Under-19 squad during the 1999 World Cup, subsequently touring Sri Lanka with a British Universities side in 2002. He battled his way into the Surrey side, and in 2005 took a competition-best 6 for 24 in a Twenty20 tie against Middlesex at Lord's. Nevertheless, he moved north of the river to Lord's in 2007 where he felt his opportunities would be greater. And they were. Consistent in all forms of cricket, and with a liking for the big occasion, he took 104 wickets in all three formats in 2008 and began to establish himself as a county stalwart. Surprisingly, he was overlooked for the England development squad, but had his chance to shine in Middlesex's trip to Antigua for the Stanford 20/20 for 20. Together with Steven Finn he led Middlesex's attack in 2011, taking 80 wickets at 20.98 as the county gained promotion from Division Two.
In early 2012 Murtagh qualified for Ireland based on his grandparents. He had to wait a few months to become a regular, but, after the retirement of Trent Johnston and Boyd Rankin's defection to England, soon became the leader of Ireland's attack, and took 3 for 33 against England in front of 10,000 spectators at Malahide in September 2013. His withdrawal from the 2015 World Cup because of a foot injury suffered in a training session in Dubai denied him the opportunity he had cherished and he also missed out on a potential appearance in World Twenty20 in India in 2016, this time of his own volition, when he retired from T20 internationals early in the 2015 season.
While his appearances for Ireland were primarily in limited-overs cricket, Middlesex increasingly regarded saving him for first-class cricket as the best use of him. He was yet again Middlesex's leading Championship wicket-take in 2014, with 58 wickets, including ten wickets in the match against Durham. He passed 500 first-class wickets in his benefit year in 2015 and his part in their Championship triumph in 2016 helped win him a contract until the end of 2018.
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