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Kent to play Champions Trophy holders Pakistan as part of their 2018 campaign

By Mark Stokes

Kent will host a tour match against Pakistan at Canterbury next season.

The game against the 2017 Champions Trophy winners will take place from April 28-31 and could see the return of the world's leading legspinner Yasir Shah who played three championship games on loan with the Kent this summer.

It will be the 11th time Kent have faced Pakistan in a first-class fixture at Canterbury with the tourists triumphant in three of their previous visits.

Yasir Shah could be heading back to Canterbury with Pakistan Picture Ady Kerry

Yasir Shah could be heading back to Canterbury with Pakistan Picture: Ady Kerry

Head coach Matt Walker said: “We’re delighted to welcome international opposition to Kent again next season. It will be a good experience for our players to face some top-level cricketers and provide an entertaining match for our supporters.

“With the Women’s ODI (between England and South Africa) at The Spitfire Ground later in the year, there’s a packed summer of cricket and we can’t wait.”

Kent will also host a four-day match between India A and West Indies A at The County Ground, Beckenham, starting on Wednesday July 4.

Kent’s Specsavers County Championship Division 2 campaign will begin against Gloucestershire at The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence on Friday, April 13.

They follow that up with a trip to Durham (April 20) and face games against Glamorgan (Cardiff) and Sussex (Canterbury) before the Royal London One-Day Cup series gets underway in mid-May.

The first RLODC home match is against Glamorgan at Canterbury on Friday, May 25. The Spitfires will also host Somerset (Canterbury, May 29), Surrey (Beckenham, June 1) and Gloucestershire (Beckenham, June 3).

Pink-ball cricket returns in 2018 with a championship match against Middlesex at Canterbury on 25-28 June while Canterbury Cricket Week takes place from July 20-27 with the visit of Leicestershire to The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence either side of T20 matches against Surrey and Sussex.

Kent have yet to confirm whether there will be a championship game at Tunbridge Wells in 2018 Picture Andy Jones

Kent have yet to confirm whether there will be a championship game at Tunbridge Wells in 2018 Picture: Andy Jones

Tunbridge Wells Cricket Festival is yet to be confirmed due to concerns over maintenance of the Nevill Ground as work continues to improve facilities.

The Championship fixture against Warwickshire, scheduled for June 20-23, will only go ahead if the club and ECB officials are satisfied with the condition of the playing area during pre-season inspections.

Kent Cricket CEO Jamie Clifford said: “We are working with Tunbridge Wells Borough Council and Tunbridge Wells Cricket Club to ensure facilities are appropriate for first class cricket.

“Our groundstaff worked tirelessly in 2017 to ensure the fixture could continue the tradition of the Festival.

“We will monitor improvements at the ground with a view to returning in June.”

For a  full rundown of Kent's 2018 fixtures see this week's Kentish Gazette

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