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Home Kent Sport Article
Adam Riley claimed a career-best 4-22 as Kent Spitfires beat Gloucestershire by 21 runs to make it two wins from two in NatWest T20 Blast South Group at the Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence on Friday night.
Kent are the only unbeaten side in the country after following up their swashbuckling win at Somerset last Friday with a grittier victory against Gloucestershire.
While last week's win saw batting fireworks, this week's performance was more fireblanket as the home bowling attack produced stingy spells on a sticky wicket to prevent the visitors ever coming close in a modest chase.
Kent again opened with Daniel Bell-Drummond and Rob Key, and though the skipper did launch a big six and rattle two fours, he offered a couple of half-chances before being caught in the deep by Benny Howell for 24 from 21 balls.
Bell-Drummond (11) didn't linger and despite three fine boundaries, number three Sam Northeast went for a rapid 17 to leave the hosts on 61-3.
Sam Billings was caught and bowled by Howell for a duck and despite a trademark six, Darren Stevens (21) was bowled by the spinner who finished with a career-best 3-21.
74-5 from 11.3 overs left the crowd decidedly flat, but Alex Blake continued his rich vein of form, rattling five fours and a six in his 30-ball innings, which produced his best T20 score of 41.
He put on 38 in six overs with Adam Ball and 24 more in 14 balls alongside Mitch Claydon (5 not out) before being stumped off the final delivery to leave Kent 136/7.
The reply began in stifling fashion as Doug Bollinger, Claydon and David Griffiths limited the visitors to 19 runs from the first five overs.
The opening wicket went to Claydon as Sam Billings took a tidy catch off Chris Dent for six and the stingy attack continued with Ball and Stevens weighing in with tidy overs.
Adam Riley struck with just his second ball, trapping Michael Klinger LBW for 25 as he attempted a reverse sweep and bowled Alex Gidman (17) with the first ball of his second over to make it 64-3.
Riley’s third came when Ian Cockbain (3) hoisted one to Northeast and all of a sudden it was 76-4 with 38 balls remaining.
Stevens avenged his dismissal by bowling Howell for a golden duck and dangerman Hamish Marshall followed moments later, bowled by Riley, to finished with 4-22.
The score was 82-6 with 28 balls to go and Kent turned the screw, Bollinger tempted Cameron Herring (4) into a skier to Key and Griffiths bowled James Fuller for nine.
With 27 needed off the final over, Kent were in cruise control, though there was time for Graeme McCarter to hole-out to Stevens off Bollinger, who finished with a fine 2-15 from his four overs.
The Spitfires have a six-day break before they travel to Hampshire for their third group game on Thursday,
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