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Kent bat again with lead of 263

KENT continued to dominate their top versus bottom championship clash in sunny Canterbury after dismissing struggling Northamptonshire for 151 on day two.

Responding to Kent’s 414 for eight declared, Northamptonshire struggled in the face of a controlled bowling performance by Kent’s young and injury-hit attack to concede a first innings lead of 263.

With Matt Dennington (broken hand) and Alex Loudon (stomach bug) unable to bowl, Kent elected against enforcing the follow-on and went out to bat again.

Kent had skittled out the visitors inside 45 overs with Amjad Khan leading the rout with four for 47.

After starting with a brace of maidens, Khan plucked out Jim Cook's off stump to make them six for one after six overs.

Simon Cusden then knocked back Tim Roberts’ off stump with one that nipped back down the Nackington Road slope to squeeze through the gate.

Tom Huggins had scored just one when he sliced a drive to substitute fielder Joe Denly at point to make it 27 for three.

Usman Afzaal should have gone for nine when he offered a chance to Denly at point off the bowling of Cusden, but this time the fielder downed a dipping chance.

Matthew Walker then got in on the act, trapping David Sales leg before for three with a shooting off-cutter then, with the last ball before lunch, Khan dipped one into Gerard Brophy (10) to leave the visitors five down by the interval.

After the break Khan beat Graeme Swann (16) for pace, bowled Afzaal (34) with a leg-cutter then Joseph got one to lift on Johann Louw that brushed the gloves and flew to David Fulton at slip.

Cusden then returned to bowl Ben Phillips via an under edge as the former Kent batsman attempted a back-foot defensive and Min Patel finished it by having Steffan Jones caught at deep cover by Denly.

Earlier, Kent’s captain Fulton ended the home innings on 414 for eight.

The walking wounded hosts had Niall O'Brien and Dennington unfit to bat after both retired hurt at the end of day one.

Dennington will miss the remainder of the season after fracturing his right hand in fending off a lifter from Louw.

Kent's South African-born paceman may yet have to have a steel plate fitted in his hand after a complete fracture of the bone.

O'Brien meanwhile was detained in Kent and Canterbury Hospital overnight after another Louw lifter squeezed through the grille and peak of his helmet to hit him above the right eye.

The Irish wicketkeeper has a suspected broken nose and had seven stitches inserted into the gash and was kept under observation overnight for fear of concussion.

In his absence young Kent League wicketkeeper Richard Piesley took over as reserve wicketkeeper.

The 17-year-old from Sittingbourne is a member of the Kent Academy and the England Under-17 Development programme and plays his club cricket for Gore Court.

Joe Denly was also called in as 12th man for Dennington, but both substitutes will be unable to bat.

Kent's first innings lasted just 15 balls into day two when Louw accounted for Rob Joseph at second slip to finish the innings after 106.5 overs. Louw ended with excellent figures of four for 92.

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