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Kent Cricket all-rounder Darren Stevens says there is still time for them to get involved on the LV= County Championship Division 2 promotion race

By Alex Hoad
Kent Cricket's Darren Stevens Picture: Barry Goodwin
Kent Cricket's Darren Stevens Picture: Barry Goodwin

Darren Stevens says Kent can get themselves into the LV= County Championship, Division 2 promotion hunt on the back of their 10-wicket win over Derbyshire.

Stevens claimed six second-innings wickets and nine in the match as Kent cruised to a 10-wicket demolition of Derbyshire at Canterbury on Tuesday night, which took Kent fifth 45 points adrift of the second promotion place with seven games still to play.

With their next four-day game at rock-bottom Leicester on July 7, Stevens said hopes were high of winning back-to-back games for the first time this season.

He said: “This was definitely a must-win game. We were both down the bottom end of the table and to get off, you’ve got to beat these.

“Getting 20-odd points here pushes us mid-table. We’ve got to keep winning, though. We’ve got to win five or six more games to compete with (top-two) Worcester and Hampshire.”

The 38-year-old all-rounder’s quest for only a second career 10-wicket match haul was thwarted by spinner Adam Riley, whose stock continued to grow with another seven-wicket match performance which has increased calls for him to be drafted into the England Test set-up.

Stevens admitted he was ‘spewing’ after missing the chance of just his second 10-wicket match in a First Class career spanning 17 years and more than 200 games.

He said: “I’ve had a couple of nine-fers but only one 10 – against Surrey in 2011.
“Rob Key asked me if I wanted a go when they were eight down (on the second day). I was due to be on the over after Riles got the ninth wicket and I said ‘I’ll save myself for the second innings.’“In hindsight ,I should have had a go at getting the last wicket.”

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