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County cricket talking points: Surrey and Essex see out the season in style

Essex won the title without losing a game last season. This week they ensured Surrey did not emulate their achievement

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog

With the last ball of the last day of the last match still standing in 2018, the County Champions could win, tie or lose to their predecessors – and they say this form of the game is outdated? Spoilsport, Ryan ten Doeschate, scored the runs that won a remarkable match, runs that denied Surrey an unbeaten season and a fairytale victory. Bowled out in a blaze of end of term carelessness for 67 in the first dig, Surrey went in to bat for a second time trailing by 410 runs. 143 overs later, Essex were chasing an awkward 132 for a win that had looked nailed on for two days. But you don’t win 10 out of 13 matches without spirit as well as skill, and it took a captain’s knock for Ten Doeschate to deny Surrey, who would not be bowed without a struggle to the bitter end. Great match, great season, great competition.

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