Kent promotion hopes alive

Stevens dominates as Foxes collapse

Last updated: 31st August 2012  

Brendan Nash

Brendan Nash: reached 108 by the close on day one

 Waterlogged cricket generic - Grace Road - 18/7/12

Grace Road: rain prevented any play on day two

 Matthew Boyce - Leicestershire 2009

Matt Boyce: unbeaten on 78 on day three at Grace Road

Darren Stevens Kent

Darren Stevens: Ripped apart Lecestershire's middle order

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Darren Stevens took five wickets for 35 runs against his former club as Kent kept their promotion hopes alive with a resounding 147-run victory over Leicestershire.

Kent set Leicestershire a target of 283 in 68 overs, but 36-year-old Stevens sent the Foxes tumbling to defeat in a devastating 14-over spell.

There was a bizarre start to the day with the Leicestershire batsmen, Matt Boyce and Josh Cobb, facing just one ball before skipper Matthew Hoggard declared still 179 runs behind.

It was clear an agreement had been reached on a runs chase, and Kent responded by closing their second innings at 103 for two off 22 overs - setting Leicestershire a target of 283 in 68 overs.

The hosts could not have made a worse start in pursuit when Davies had Michael Thornely caught behind in the third over and Shreck removed Will Jones in similar fashion in the next, leaving the hosts at 7-2.

Ned Eckersley was next to go with the total 17 before Stevens wreaked havoc on the middle order. Davies removed top scorer with 33 Jigar Naik and Shrek wrapped things up, having Alex Wyatt caught at short leg to leave Leicestershire were all out for 135 in 49.5 overs.

Day three

Kent's promotion bid is almost over after their bowlers failed to make inroads into stubborn Leicestershire at Grace Road.

The visitors, in fourth, need victory to keep their fading hopes of returning to Division One alive, and they declared in the morning of the third day on 350-8, having added a brisk 28 and ensured four batting points were in the bank.

They needed to skittle the Foxes out and force the follow on, but the hosts were having none of it, reaching 170-3 by stumps.

Kent had a terrific start too with Charlie Shreck removing Michael Thornely (0) and Ned Eckersley (8) as Leicestershire slipped to 14-2.

Thornely edged behind and Eckersley was superbly caught at slip by Darren Stevens.

But Stevens saw both Matt Boyce and opener Will Jones (48) dropped off his bowling and the third wicket pair cashed in to post a partnership of 93.

Jones nicked a good delivery from Matt Coles but Boyce (78no) and Josh Cobb (31no) played fluently until stumps, the Foxes only 30 short of avoiding the follow-on.

Day Two

The second day between Leicestershire and Kent at Grace Road was abandoned without a ball being bowled.

Heavy rain that began in the early part of the morning continued well into the afternoon and, with puddles on the outfield, umpires Michael Gough and George Sharp called the game off for the day soon after lunch.

Kent, who had reached 322-6 on the first day with Brendan Nash 108 not out, will be hoping for better weather for the rest of the match.

They still have a chance to gain promotion, but need a win against Leicestershire to close the gap on the top two, Derbyshire and Hampshire.

Day One

A century from Brendan Nash helped Kent into a strong position at the end of the opening day of their Division Two clash with Leicestershire.

West Indies all-rounder Nash reached 108 by the close as the visitors recovered from 188-5 to 322-6 at stumps at Grace Road.

The opening day proved to be one of three big momentum changes with Kent starting strongly as Sam Northeast and Rob Key added 110 for the first wicket.

Northeast eventually fell for 52 to Alex Wyatt, but it was left-armer Rob Taylor who was the main fly in the ointment for Kent as he grabbed a career-best 4-77 to slow them in the afternoon.

Taylor trapped Key leg before for 68 and also accounted for Alex Blake and Mike Powell, and when Wyatt dismissed Darren Stevens for 18 they were in a deal of trouble.

But Nash and Geraint Jones embarked on a century stand that seemed likely to continue into Wednesday, only for Jones (52) to fall to Taylor off the last ball of the day.

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