Ford previews Championship trip to Derbyshire

Monday 31st August 2009

KENT“S Director of Cricket Graham Ford (pictured) has played down any promotion talk and urged his players to take it game by game as they look to achieve an instant return to Division One in the LV County Championship. Kent take on Derbyshire tomorrow, at Derby. Their latest victory over Surrey leaves them 28 points clear of nearest rivals Essex with a game in hand but Ford isn“t looking too far ahead: “It“s very important that we stay on top of our game and just take it one game at a time. We mustn“t get too far ahead of ourselves as there is still plenty of cricket to be played. I am proud of how well the boys have played but it“s important that we keep performing well.”

So what has pleased Ford most about the form in the Championship this season? “We have been fortunate enough to see many positives. We have played some impressive cricket and are well placed in both the Championship and the Pro40. The fantastic thing about this group is that they are all proud of their own personal performances and work hard for the team. Things are going well for us.”

Kent have achieved a number of last day wins this season, in the Championship, and Ford says the experience of his players has helped achieve success: “We have lots of experience within our team. We have some very wise cricketers, guys who are well aware of what can be achieved. We know that we need to keep fighting during every single session and not take our foot off the gas. Some of our opposition has tended to take their foot off the gas a little bit and it has helped us. We go into the final day with no specific strategy but we have managed to turn some draws into wins with some fighting cricket.”

Kent“s latest opponents, Derbyshire, have performed well this season and Ford is full of praise for their next opposition: “They“ve got a very good outfit this year and pushed us all the way in the reverse Championship fixture and in the Pro40 too. They have a number of experienced campaigners in their ranks and are going well. We will have to play very well to get a positive result.”

Kent have named a 13 man squad for the trip to Derbyshire. The same 11 that beat Surrey plus Matt Coles and Rob Ferley. Ford says they will assess the wicket before deciding on their chosen team: “We will have to consider all the options and pick the team once we have looked at the wicket. We have tried to cover all the options with the 13 we have selected but we have several players out injured so the squad pretty much picks itself. The boys all played very well against Surrey. I was very impressed with all of them so it may well be the same team. We will decide in the morning.”

Kent (from): Key (C), Northeast, Jones (W), van Jaarsveld, Stevens, Kemp, Blake, Tredwell, Cook, Khan, Edwards, Ferley, Coles