Udal steps down as Middlesex captain

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The Independent Online

Shaun Udal has stood down as Middlesex captain, with Australian Adam Gilchrist taking over for a six-match stint before passing the reins to Neil Dexter.

Udal, who was coaxed out of retirement by the county before taking over the captaincy in September 2008, succeeded in stabilising the side following a difficult period under predecessor Ed Smith but has been disappointed by their modest performances this summer.

Gilchrist, signed as a Twenty20 specialist, will oversee the transition to Dexter during his short-term stay. Angus Fraser, Middlesex's managing director of cricket, said: "Shaun took over the captaincy at an extremely difficult time and has led the side with energy and pride. During the two years he has been in charge he has helped create a united team and positive environment. He now has a key role to play in assisting his successor, Neil Dexter.

"Shaun cares passionately about how Middlesex CCC performs and has worked extremely hard to turn the team into a winning outfit but the indifferent cricket we continue to play has worn him down."

Udal, 41, will continue to be available for Middlesex.