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Kent head coach Matt Walker wants 'significant' first innings score against Sussex

By Josh Fordham

Matt Walker wants his batters to post a substantial first innings score against Sussex in their next Specsavers County Championship match.

Kent have won back-to-back away matches in the competition, largely due to bowling both Durham and Glamorgan out for under 100 in their first innings.

Walker’s side have failed to get more than 200 runs in any innings of their first three championship matches of the season.

Matt Walker. Picture: Andy Jones.
Matt Walker. Picture: Andy Jones.

He said: “We haven’t scored a batting point yet, which is frustrating and we want to start posting some really significant first innings scores.

“We need to keep working hard on our first innings score and get ourselves in strong positions and close games out.

“There are glimpses from the second innings against Glamorgan when the sun came out and it was good conditions to bat in and they are starting to find some form.

“We’ve won two on the road and that’s great but we also want to make sure we start to become successful at home.”

Sussex will pose a tough test for Kent and are coached by Jason Gillespie, who was at the club last season as assistant coach.

Star Indian overseas bowler, Ishant Sharma, is a doubt after picking up a shoulder injury two weeks ago.

Jason Gillespie. Picture: Chris Davey
Jason Gillespie. Picture: Chris Davey

Walker said: “Jason, at the helm, knows how to get the best out of teams. He’s a very experienced coach with a lot of success behind him and they are a dangerous side.

“If we can come out of this part of the season with three wins then that would be fantastic. “We want to get off to a good start in the County Championship if you have any aspirations to challenge at the end of the season.

“It would give us the confidence going into the 50-over competition but we will have to see what happens and will have to hopefully produce what we have this week.”

Last week, Kent also announced the signing of Carlos Brathwaite for the opening four matches of the T20 competition.

Listen to the latest episode of our Kent Cricket Podcast below:

Walker was looking forward to welcoming the West Indies all-rounder to the county for matches at Surrey, Somerset and Gloucestershire before a home match at Beckenham against Hampshire.

Walker added: “It’s a really great signing and it will excite everybody. We had a bit of a gap with Marcus Stoinis coming in a bit later so we wanted someone for that start to give us a boost.

“We wanted an overseas who would be a like for like who can bowl, bat and field and Carlos is that cricketer.

“He can certainly hit the ball a long way and it’s an exciting one for the crowd and for us.”

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