Middlesex coach Richard Scott has refused to rule out a County Championship title challenge as his side look to bounce back from their T20 exit.
Their elimination from the 20-over competition was confirmed on Friday, in spite of a thrilling last-wicket win over Surrey at The Oval.
The focus now switches to the second half of the County Championship campaign, with unbeaten Division One front-runners Nottinghamshire visiting Uxbridge.
Fourth-placed Middlesex have themselves lost only one four-dayer and could go above Notts with victory – a result which would announce their arrival as potential title challengers.
Scott told West London Sport: “We’d be silly to go shouting it from the rooftops that we are going to win the title.
“But now that we’ve forced ourselves into a good position, we’re certainly looking more up than down.
“We recognise there’s a lot of work to be done between now and the end of the year. We’ve got to play Warwickshire twice and Nottinghamshire once more.
“We just need to return to what stood us in good stead before the break.”
Having won the Division Two title last year, Scott said he had been expecting a season of consolidation – but admitted expectations may be a little higher given their fine start.
He said: “If anyone had asked me what a successful season would’ve constituted, I think I would have said that fourth or fifth would be pretty good going.
“A lot of our players haven’t played Division One cricket before, so that would’ve represented progress.
“We’ve really enjoyed Division One cricket and the challenge of it, but we’ve never been overawed by it.”