Skip to main content

FP t20: Kent Spitfires v Sussex Sharks match preview

Friday 25th June 2010

Sussex Sharks v Kent Spitfires
Friends Provident t20 – South Division
Sunday, 27 June 2010. 6pm start
Hove, East Sussex

As the Friends Provident t20 competition continues, points are more precious than ever for the Kent Spitfires as they travel to Hove to take on table-topping Sussex Sharks on Sunday evening.

Having lost their previous four games, Rob Key’s men have slipped down the South Division but the tight nature of the group means that two points against the Sharks could launch a Spitfires assault on a top four position in the second half of the group stages.

Kent came close to victory against the Middlesex Panthers at Lord’s on Thursday night. The tight encounter at headquarters saw the home side bat first and thanks to good bowling performances from Malinga Bandara (2-23) and Simon Cook (2-26) the Panthers were restricted to 154-6; Dawid Malan’s 25-ball 41 top-scored for the batting side. The Spitfires run-chase started well as Martin van Jaarsveld (25) and Key (42) put on 54 within the first seven overs, but their middle-order succumbed to the spin of Tom Smith. He returned figures of 5-24 as Kent reached 141-7, just 13 runs short of the needed victory target.

Sussex, on the other-hand, are comfortably topping the group having won eight of their first ten games, however in their last outing they fell to a dangerous Somerset Sabres side. The Sharks batted first but three wickets apiece for West Indian Kieron Pollard and South African Alfonso Thomas saw them reach a solid yet unspectacular 159. A brisk 44 from Chris Nash boosted the total. Somerset were always in control of the run-chase as Marcus Trescothick (50) and 41 from former Kent-man Peter Trego saw them home by seven wickets to condemn the Sharks to just their second defeat of the group stages.

The Spitfires and the Sharks have already battled it out in this season’s competition as Michael Yardy’s men came out on top in a close clash at Tunbridge Wells. Darren Stevens made a 30-ball 52 to help Kent up to 163-5, a total that was competitive albeit maybe slightly under-par. Matt Prior got the Sharks run-chase off to brisk start striking 47, but two wickets each for spin-twins James Tredwell and Bandara (pictured)looked to have put Kent in control until Yardy remained composed, making an unbeaten 36 to lead his side to a last over, four wicket victory.

Kent will again be without the injured duo of Joe Denly and Amjad Khan but will hopefully welcome spinner Tredwell back into the side. Youngster Ashley Shaw, who made his Kent debut against Middlesex Panthers, is included in the 13-man squad along with all-rounder James Goodman.

Kent: Key (c), van Jaarsveld, Jones (w), Blake, Stevens, Mahmood, Northeast, Coles, Shaw, Bandara, Cook, Tredwell, Goodman

Picture:Getty Images