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Kent v Warwickshire: day two report

Matthew Walker scored 57 in almost three hours
Matthew Walker scored 57 in almost three hours

Kent: 178 for six – trail by 59 runs

KENT’S batsmen found a slow and low Nevill Ground pitch hard going as they limped nearer to Warwickshire’s total of 237 on a stop-start second two of their Festival Week championship fixture at The Nevill.

Grey skies, four afternoon interruptions coupled with a turgid pitch, which was re-laid just five years ago and is being used for county cricket for the first time, made it almost impossible to play a fluent innings despite the fact Warwickshire fielded a hugely weakened attack.

With no Heath Streak to take the new ball or Daniel Vettori to spin it – both withdrew with back injuries – the Warwickshire attack looked there for the taking, but this pitch and the conditions ensured the opposite was true.

Indeed, the demise of Kent’s captain Rob Key set the benchmark for the day. Pushing half forward to a full-length ball from Durham University student Lee Daggett, Key rightly appeared horrified when the ball stopped on the surface of the pitch, took a thick inside edge and went through to uproot leg stump.

In the next over and having witnessed the dismissal, David Fulton pushed forward apprehensively to Dougie Brown and, when attempting to withdraw the bat, steered a catch to slip to make it 22 for two.

With both openers gone and the ball still only 13 overs old, Kent needed to bat out time and see off the seam, but Martin van Jaarsveld was guilty of giving away his wicket when he sliced an expansive drive to cover point.

Daggett, who played a couple of matches for Kent 2nd last summer before suffering a back injury, was again the successful bowler.

That bought together Darren Stevens and Matthew Walker for a decent stand of 59 in 17 overs in which both dared to play a few drives despite the risk of the ball stopping on the surface.

Just as it looked they would take Kent into the ascendancy Stevens, having hit four fours in his 54-ball innings of 24, fell into Alex Loudon’s trap by picking out the short extra-cover fielder specifically placed for an ill-judged drive that gave Daggett a third wicket.

Walker (57) and Justin Kemp (17) survived the coming and goings of the final two sessions and the loss of 47 overs to bad light and drizzle in adding 54 in 18 overs.

Walker reached 50 from 125 balls and with six fours but, after batting for almost three hours, he chased a wide leg-side ball from the tiring Daggett to gift a catch to keeper Tony Frost and give Daggett debut figures of four for 72 from 21 overs.

Eight overs later Kemp, having patiently worked his way to 28, followed a Dougie Brown leg-cutter and edged to second slip to further take the gloss of Kent’s battling afternoon.

Andrew Hall and Niall O’Brien survived the remaining three overs through to the close but Kent will still need to work hard to move level with the visitors come day three.


Warwickshire first innings

N V Knight c Hall b Khan 0
M A Waugh b Tredwell 48
I R Bell b Hall 20
I J Trott b Hall 0
A G R Loudon c van Jaarsveld b Khan 11
J O Troughton lbw b Patel 29
D R Brown b Kemp 10
T Frost not out 66
N M Carter c Key b Patel 27
J E Anyon c Walker b Patel 2
L Daggett b Hall 7
Extras 17

Total 237 all out after 100.2 overs

Fall of wicket: 1-4, 2-40, 3-40, 4-72, 5-84, 6-109, 7-151, 8-181, 9-185.

Bowling: Khan 20-5-43-2, Hall 18.2-7-43-2, Stevens 4-0-17-0, Patel 20-6-48-3, Kemp 9-1-25-1, Tredwell 29-8-51-1.

Kent first innings

R W T Key b Daggett 12
D P Fulton c Trott b Brown 10
M van Jaarsveld c Troughton b Daggett 9
M J Walker c Frost b Daggett 57
D I Stevens c Knight b Daggett 24
J M Kemp c Knight b Brown 28
A J Hall not out 11
N J O’Brien not out 3
Extras 24

Total 178 for six after 65 overs

Fall of wicket: 1-22, 2-22, 3-42, 4-101, 5-155, 6-171,

Bowling: Brown 24-10-40-2, Daggett 21-5-72-4, Loudon 4-1-8-0, Anyon 11-3-26-0, Carter 5-0-21-0.

Bonus points: Kent 3pts Warwickshire 3pts.

* Mark Pennell's day three report will appear here at the close of play this evening.

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