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Biography
Timothy James Murtagh
  • Born 2 August 1981 Lambeth London
  • Educated John Fisher School, Purley; St Mary's University, Twickenham
  • Occupation Professional Cricketer
  • Debut 23 June 2012 v Australia at Stormont
  • Cap Number 682
  • Style Left-hand batsman; right arm fast medium
  • Teams British Universities England U19 Stanmore, Reigate Priory, Surrey, Middlesex

Tim Murtagh, one of the leading opening bowlers in the County Championship, swings the ball disconcertingly at a fast medium pace. Deservedly profiled by the magazine All Out Cricket (AOC) in 2014 as one of the five "Titans of County Cricket", a quintet which also featured Ed Joyce, he has taken - at the time of writing - 548 wickets in first class cricket at 27.09 with 468 of those having fallen to him since his move to Middlesex in 2007 which he celebrated by sharing the county's Player of the Year award with overseas star Murali Kartik and, according to Wisden showing that "his worth was incalculable."

Many have questioned why his consistency, which has regularly taken him past the 50 wicket mark in every subsequent season bar 2010, did not gain him international recognition for the land of his birth rather than causing him to seek it for the land of his ancestors. He told AOC that he had no feelings of bitterness about his non-selection for England and agreed that it might have been because of his lack of genuine pace. Be that as it may, Middlesex as their Director of Cricket Angus Fraser, who knows more than most about pace bowling, freely admits, are more than glad to have him, as they have shown by the award of a benefit for the coming (2015) season. Tim's batting, which once caused him to be thought of as an all rounder is less highly rated now but he has 10 first class 50s to his credit, having twice reached his top score of 74, both for Surrey, one against Middlesex.

Cricket runs strongly in the Murtagh family, Tim's brother Chris, an elegant upper order right hander, made a handful of appearances for Surrey, reaching three figures once, before playing with success for Shropshire, a beautifully struck half century against Staffordshire in 2011, entrancing this writer on a balmy spring day at Oswestry. The brothers played for John Fisher School in Purley but rugby was certainly the main game there, Tim captaining the 2nd XV.

Their uncle Dublin born Andy, a middle order batsman, played for Hampshire and Eastern Province before teaching for 20 years at Malvern College where he ran the cricket. In retirement he has written biographies of George Chesterton, Tom Graveney and - shortly to be published - Barry Richards.

Tim was a member of the England U19 side in the 1999-2000 World Cup in Sri Lanka. The side's overall performance was disappointing, failing to qualify for the knock out stages but with figures of 4-32 against the Americas and, perhaps more importantly 4-26 against West Indies, Tim was certainly one of the successes in a side which also included Mark Wallace, now captain of Glamorgan, Ian Bell, Michael Carberry and Ricky Ponting's favourite cricketer Gary Pratt. All of them, including Tim. were part of the U19 side which played three Tests against Sri Lanka the following summer, England won the first by an innings but he tourists were victorious in the other two . Tim was again one of the successes taking 16 wickets at 16.31 including 4-29 in the First Test at Trent Bridge.

Between 2000 and 2003 he made several appearances for the British Universities, showing to very good effect against the Pakistanis in 2001. The tourists had little difficulty in winning by an innings bowling their hosts out for 74 and 155, Tim making an undefeated 22 in the second innings despite the hostility of Wasim Akram and Younis Ahmed. Pakistan totalled 316 between these meagre efforts with Tim the only bowler to trouble them. Dismissing Saeed Anwar, Inzaman-ul- Haq and Mohammed Younis (then known as Younis Yohanna) he returned the excellent figures of 22.5-3-86-6.

He made his debut for Surrey in 2001, during a successful season with the Second XI, and remained with the county until 2006. He tended to be seen as more of a limited overs bowler, and achieved his career best (to date January 2015) figures in both List A and T 20 during this period. In a List A game with Derbyshire at Derby he took 4-14 as the hosts were dismissed for 88 while against Middlesex, in front of a packed house for a Lord's T20, he took 6-24 from his 4 overs, the 4th best UK. figures in this form of cricket. His wickets included the key one of Owais Shah, very much on song, as Middlesex chased a Surrey score of 200, but lost by 23 runs.

In 2007, however he joined Middlesex and at once became an essential member of the side. He has said that it was the move as much as anything else that transformed his effectiveness. He has taken ten wickets in a match on four occasions. His best bowling figures of 7-82 came in a drawn match with Derbyshire at Derby in 2009, while his season's best return came in 2011 when he took 85 wickets at 20.87, the latter achievement again bringing him a shared Player of the Year award, this time with the prolific Australian opening bat Chris Rogers. Both had played key roles in gaining Middlesex a return to First Division cricket.

A conversation with his friend Ed Joyce persuaded Tim to qualify for Ireland. Coach Phil Simmons, though explaining that he would not necessarily be an automatic selection was only too glad to have him, with Trent Johnston on the verge of retirement and Boyd Rankin's call up for England becoming a distinct possibility. Tim has, as this is being written, played 30 matches for Ireland and taken 29 wickets, in all matches, at 28.48. His best bowling figures of 4-24 were achieved against the UAE in the 2013 T20 World Cup Qualifier Semi Final. Ireland had managed only 147 from their allocated overs but Max Sorensen chopped down the early batting in the UAE reply, Tim then, in the words of Ian Callender "claimed four of the last five to complete another highly impressive Irish performance."

However an equally impressive performance had come a few months previously in the ODI against England on that gloriously sunny September day at Malahide. Following a fine hundred from William Porterfield, England had needed 270 to win but were rocked back by a fine opening spell from Tim who took 3-33 from his 10 overs, his haul a notable one consisting of all rounder Luke Wright, James Taylor, a diminutive but excellent bat and Zimbabwean Yorkshireman Gary Ballance. Unfortunately Tim could not bowl all day as his Middlesex colleague Eoin Morgan and Essex man Ravi Bopara starred in an ODI 5th wicket record. Ireland had reason to feel disappointed but no blame could be laid at Tim's door.

Tim was left out of Ireland's squad of what became the "tour from hell" at the end of 2014, both his country and his county being keen for him to rest after an arduous season in which he had done much to ensure that Middlesex remained in the top flight of the Championship. However he was in the party for the Triangular series with Scotland and Afghanistan and was thus also in the World Cup side. Unfortunately before the first competition got underway he suffered a broken bone in his foot and his participation in the Cup must be in some doubt. It is very much to be hoped that such fears will prove groundless.

Edward Liddle, January 2015

Photographs
International Matches
View Match Ireland v Australia - no result (ODI, Stormont, 23 June 2012)
View Match Ireland beat Afganistan by 59 runs ((WCLC) World Cup Qualifier, Clontarf, 5 July 2012)
View Match Ireland lost to Bangladesh by 2 wickets (T20 International, Stormont, 21 July 2012)
View Match Ireland beat Sri Lanka by 7 wickets (Twenty20 Friendly, Colombo, 10 September 2012)
View Match UAE drew with Ireland (Intercontinental Cup, Sharjah, 12 March 2013)
View Match UAE lost to Ireland by 6 wickets (T20, Sharjah, 21 March 2013)
View Match Ireland tied with Pakistan (ODI, Clontarf, 23 May 2013)
View Match Ireland lost to Pakistan by 2 wickets (ODI, Clontarf, 26 May 2013)
View Match Netherlands lost to Ireland by 88 runs ((WCLC) World Cup Qualifier, Amsterdam, 7 July 2013)
View Match Netherlands tied with Ireland (WCLC) (World Cup Qualifier, Amsterdam, 9 July 2013)
View Match Ireland lost to England by 6 wickets (ODI, Malahide, 3 September 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Scotland by 1 wicket ((WCLC) World Cup Qualifier, Stormont, 6 September 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Netherlands by 6 wickets (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 12 November 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Namibia by 31 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 15 November 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Canada by 2 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 16 November 2013)
View Match UAE lost to Ireland by 5 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 17 November 2013)
View Match Ireland beat USA by 75 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 20 November 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Uganda by 48 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 22 November 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Hong Kong by 85 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 24 November 2013)
View Match UAE lost to Ireland by 62 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 29 November 2013)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 68 runs (T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi, 30 November 2013)
View Match Guyana beat Ireland by 114 runs (1 Day, Port of Spain, Trinidad, 31 January 2014)
View Match jamaica beat Ireland by 6 wickets (1 Day, Port of Spain, Trinidad, 3 February 2014)
View Match West Indies lost to Ireland by 6 wickets (T20 International, Kingston, Jamaica, 19 February 2014)
View Match West Indies beat Ireland by 11 runs (T20 International, Kingston, Jamaica, 21 February 2014)
View Match West Indies beat Ireland by 4 wickets (ODI, Kingston, Jamaica, 23 February 2014)
View Match Ireland beat Nepal by 5 wickets (T20 International, Fatullah, Bangladesh, 12 March 2014)
View Match Ireland beat UAE by 21 runs (Twenty20 World Cup, Sylhet, Bangladesh, 19 March 2014)
View Match Ireland lost to Netherlands by 6 wickets (Twenty20 World Cup, Sylhet, Bangladesh, 21 March 2014)
View Match Ireland lost to Sri Lanka by 79 runs (ODI, Clontarf, 6 May 2014)
View Match Ireland beat UAE by an innings and 26 runs (Intercontinental Cup, Malahide, 2-5 June 2015)
View Match Ireland lost to Australia by 23 runs (DLS) (ODI, Stormont, Belfast, 27 August 2015)
View Match Zimbabwe beat Ireland by 2 wickets (ODI, Harare, 9 October 2015)
View Match Zimbabwe beat Ireland by 5 wickets (ODI, Harare, 11 October 2015)
View Match Zimbabwe lost to Ireland by 2 wickets (ODI, Harare, 13 October 2015)
View Match Namibia lost to Ireland by 107 runs (Intercontinental Cup, Windhoek, 24-27 October 2015)
View Match Ireland beat Papua New Guinea by 145 runs (Intercontinental Cup, Townsville, 31 January 2016)
View Match Papua New Guinea lost to Ireland by 7 runs (T20 International, Townsville, 7 February 2016)
View Match Papua New Guinea beat Ireland by 11 runs (T20 International, Townsville, 9 February 2016)
View Match UAE lost to Ireland by 34 runs (T20 International, Abu Dhabi, 14 February 2016)
View Match UAE beat Ireland by 5 runs (T20 International, Abu Dhabi, 16 February 2016)
View Match Zimbabwe beat Ireland by 6 wickets (T20 International, Dharamsala, 5 March 2016)
View Match Oman beat Ireland by 2 wickets (T20 World Cup, Dharamsala, 9 March 2016)
View Match Bangladesh v Ireland - no result (T20 World Cup, Dharamsala, 11 March 2016)
View Match Netherlands beat Ireland by 12 runs (T20 World Cup, Dharamsala, 13 March 2016)
View Match Sri Lanka beat Ireland by 76 runs (ODI, Malahide, 16 June 2016)
View Match Sri Lanka beat Ireland by 136 runs (ODI, Malahide, 18 June 2016)
View Match Ireland lost to Afghanistan by 39 runs (ODI, Stormont, 12 July 2016)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 6 wickets (ODI, Stormont, 14 July 2016)
View Match Ireland lost to Afghanistan by 79 runs (ODI, Stormont, 17 July 2016)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 12 runs (ODI, Stormont, 19 July 2016)
View Match Ireland lost to Pakistan by 255 runs (ODI, Malahide, 18 August 2016)
View Match Ireland beat Hong Kong by 70 runs (Intercontinental Cup, Stormont, 30 August 2016)
View Match South Africa beat Ireland by 206 runs (ODI, Benoni, 25 September 2016)
View Match Australia beat Ireland by 9 wickets (ODI, Benoni, 27 September 2016)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 30 runs (ODI, Noida, 15 March 2017)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 34 runs (ODI, Noida, 17 March 2017)
View Match Afghanistan lost to Ireland by 6 wickets (ODI, Noida, 19 March 2017)
View Match Afghanistan lost to Ireland by 3 wickets (ODI, Noida, 22 March 2017)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 7 wickets (ODI, Noida, 24 March 2017)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by an innings and 172 runs (Intercontinental Cup, Noida, 28-30 March 2017)
View Match England beat Ireland by 7 wickets (ODI, Bristol, 5 May 2017)
View Match England beat Ireland by 85 runs (ODI, Lord's, 7 May 2017)
View Match Ireland v Bangladesh - no result (ODI, Malahide, 12 May 2017)
View Match Ireland lost to New Zealand by 51 runs (ODI, Malahide, 14 May 2017)
View Match Ireland lost to Bangladesh by 8 wickets (ODI, Malahide, 19 May 2017)
View Match Ireland drew with Netherlands (Intercontinental Cup, Malahide, 15-18 August 2017)
View Match Ireland beat Scotland by 203 runs (Intercontinental Cup, Dubai, 29 November 2017)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 138 runs (ODI, Sharjah, 5 December 2017)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 51 runs (ODI, Sharjah, 7 December 2017)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 5 wickets (ODI, Sharjah, 10 December 2017)
View Match Ireland beat Netherlands by 93 runs (List A, Harare, 4 March 2018)
View Match Ireland beat Papua New Guinea by 4 wickets (World Cup Qualifier, Harare, 6 March 2018)
View Match West Indies beat Ireland by 52 runs (World Cup Qualifier, Harare, 10 March 2018)
View Match Ireland beat UAE by 226 runs (World Cup Qualifier, Harare, 12 March)
View Match Zimbabwe beat Ireland by 107 runs (World Cup Qualifier, Harare, 16 March 2018)
View Match Ireland beat Scotland by 25 runs (World Cup Qualifier, Harare, 18 March 2018)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 5 wickets (World Cup Qualifier, Harare, 23 March 2018)
View Match Ireland lost to Pakistan by 5 wickets (Test Match, Malahide, 11-15 May 2018)
View Match Ireland lost to Afghanistan by 29 runs (ODI, Stormont, 27 August 2018)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 3 wickets (ODI, Stormont, 29 August 2018)
View Match Ireland lost to Afghanistan by 8 wickets (ODI, Stormont, 31 August 2018)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 5 wickets (ODI, Dehradun, India, 28 February 2019)
View Match Afghanistan v Ireland - no result (ODI, Dehradun, India, 2 March 2019)
View Match Afghanistan lost to Ireland by 4 wickets (ODI, Dehradun, India, 5 March 2019)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 109 runs (ODI, Dehradun, India, 8 March 2019)
View Match Afghanistan lost to Ireland by 5 wickets (ODI, Dehradun, India, 10 March 2019)
View Match Afghanistan beat Ireland by 7 wickets (Test Match, Dehradun, India, 15-18 March 2019)
View Match Ireland lost to England by 4 wickets (ODI, Malahide, 3 May 2019)
View Match Ireland lost to West Indies by 196 runs (ODI, Clontarf, 5 May 2019)
View Match Ireland lost to West Indies by 5 wickets (ODI, Malahide, 11 May 2019)
View Match Ireland beat Afghanistan by 72 runs (ODI, Stormont, 19 May 2019)
View Match Ireland lost to Afghanistan by 126 runs (ODI, Stormont, 21 May 2019)
Articles
Dial M for Murtagh
That letter could prove priceless to Irish cricket if the man who received it, Tim Murtagh, joins the team in its quest for the Twenty20 World Cup.
Murtagh confirms Irish passport arrival
The last obstacle to Middlesex star Tim Murtagh playing for Ireland was removed this week, the Irish Daily Star can reveal.
Murtagh relishing Irish challenge
Tim Murtagh has moved from the Lambeth Walk to joining the quick sprint of Ireland's cricketers in pursuit of international glory.
Murtagh reverses T20 retirement decision
Tim Murtagh is set to give Ireland another early Christmas present by making himself available for the World T20 in March after reversing his decision to retire from the shortest form of the international game.
Murtagh signs new deal at Middlesex
Tim Murtagh, has reached agreement with the club on a two-year extension to his contract, which will see him remain at Lord's until at least the end of the 2018 season.
Milestone for Murtagh
Tim Murtagh passed the milestone of 700 first-class wickets during Middlesex's County Championship clash with Northants.
Murtagh and Delany take top prizes
Tim Murtagh and Laura Delany have been awarded the International Men’s and Women’s Player of the Year, respectively, at the 7th Annual Cricket Ireland Awards.