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Kent Spitfires beat Somerset to stay top of NatWest T20 Blast South Group

Daniel Bell-Drummond hit a T20 best of 83 not out
Daniel Bell-Drummond hit a T20 best of 83 not out

Young opener Daniel Bell-Drummond scored a T20 best 77 as Kent Spitfires won a fourth consecutive game in the NatWest T20 Blast South Group with a 22-run win against Somerset at the Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence, on Friday night.

Bell-Drummond hit one six and nine fours in his 51-ball innings on the way to beating the 61 he scored against Essex at the same venue last month.

Kent remain top after the 173-6 they posted proved too much for second-bottom Somerset to chase down, finishing 151-9.

All four of Somerset's victories this year have come from batting second and they started well enough before Johann Myburgh was bowled off his pads by Mitch Claydon (1-25) with the score on 20 in the third over.

The visitors lost their second wicket when spinner James Tredwell (1-15) had Jim Allenby caught by Matt Coles at long-on for 15 with Somerset 48-2.

Two runs later, Somerset lost another wicket after James Hildredth was stumped down the leg-side by Sam Billings off Darren Stevens (2-30) for a duck.

The same combination combined to get rid of Peter Trego four balls later thanks to a smart catch by the wicket-keeper with the score on 57.

Somerset suffered another huge setback just seven runs later when Tom Cooper (4) was run out at the non-strikers end after the ball touched bowler Fabian Cowdrey's finger following a drive by New Zealand international Luke Ronchi (12).

Cowdrey (2-15) then bowled Tim Groenewald for two to leave Somerset 72-6 before it became 89-7 when Ronchi was caught by Coles off Cowdrey.

Jamie Overton went down swinging, making 31 off 19 balls before Callum Haggett (2-12) had him caught in the deep by Coles.

Max Waller (6) became Haggett's second victim to leave Somerset 113-9 before some lusty hitting from Abdur Rehman, who made 30 off 13 balls, provided some late fireworks.

Earlier, Kent posted 173-6 after being sent in and it was openers Joe Denly and Bell-Drummond who laid the foundations with a 112-run partnership.

Denly was the first to 50 off 36 balls before he was finally caught at long-on by Jamie Overton off Allenby for 61 off 47 balls.

He hit six fours and two towering sixes.

Alex Blake came and went for a two-ball duck after being bowled by Overton just four runs after Denly departed.

A stunning one handed catch from Trego at short third man off Alfonso Thomas sent captain Sam Northeast on his way for seven with the score on 145.

Billings and Bell-Drummond took the score to 166 ahead of the final over after Billings had smashed Overton for three fours in the 19th.

Thomas ended the partnership by bowling Bell-Drummond with first ball of the over and two balls later Kent lost another wicket when Coles skied Thomas to Waller at long-off.

Cowdrey was the last wicket to fall, run out for one off the final ball.

Kent now head to Cheltenham to play Gloucestershire in the competition on Sunday .

Kent: Daniel Bell-Drummond, Joe Denly, Sam Northeast, Fabian Cowdrey, Darren Stevens, Alex Blake, Matt Coles, Sam Billings, James Tredwell, Mitch Claydon, Callum Haggett.

Somerset: Jim Allenby, Johann Myburgh, Peter Trego, James Hildreth, Tom Cooper, Luke Ronchi, Tim Groenewald, Abdur Rehman, Max Waller, Alfonso Thomas, Jamie Overton.

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