Some spectacular and destructive batting from Alex Blake and Jordan Cox propelled Kent’s Second XI into the final of the Second XI Trophy after they demolished Yorkshire at Scarborough with a stunning six wicket victory in their semi-final.
Blake thrashed the Yorkshire bowling attack for 139 runs off just 83 deliveries, with 12 fours and eight sixes. Cox fell just three runs short of what would have been a fully deserved century, out for 97, which included thirteen fours and one six, in his innings, as Kent chased down a 295 run victory target in only 42.1 overs, finishing on 298 for 4.
The pair put together a scintillating match winning third wicket stand of 217 in 26.1 overs.
Kent will now play Durham in the Final of the competition at The County Ground, Beckenham on Thursday, June 27 with Friday as the reserve day in the event of the weather intervening.
Durham beat Somerset in their semi-final encounter by three wickets.
After winning the toss, Kent decided to field and Yorkshire were bowled out in 49.3 overs for 294 with William Fraine hitting 121 for the home side, which included fifteen fours and two sixes. Will McVicar took 3 for 62 for Kent, Jared Lysaught 2 for 49 and Marcus O’Riordan 2 for 57.
After Kent lost two wickets for 62 runs, the brutal batting onslaught saw Blake race to his century off 67 deliveries with ten boundaries and five sixes. He was finally out near the end of Kent’s innings with six further runs needed for victory.
Cox batted with aggression reaching his half century off 60 balls before losing his wicket just short of his ton.
Kent Second XI Coach, Min Patel, praised his side for their efforts in what he described as a fantastic performance:
“Yorkshire’s score was a challenging one and probably just short of par on what was a very good wicket”, he said “We were able to take wickets at vital moments in the match. It was certainly not an easy run chase but Alex and Jordan batted superbly and made it look simple. Blakey was at his brilliant best as a white ball cricketer and hit sixes to all areas of the ground and Jordan played a superb back up role.
“Durham are a very strong side with some experienced players but we will be looking to put in another match winning performance.”
The Second XI start a three day championship match against Somerset at Taunton Vale on Monday, but the two T20 games, against the same opposition, scheduled for Thursday have been cancelled and will be re-arranged for a later date.
Whilst the Second XI squad were travelling to Scarborough for the Yorkshire match, a young Seconds side made up of Academy students and trialists, took on an experienced Hampshire team at Folkestone Cricket Club, in two T20 games, with Darren Stevens, captaining the Kent side as the only senior player.
Although they lost both matches, the young Kent team gave a good account of themselves in the circumstances.
In the first game, Kent lost by 20 runs, Hampshire scoring 190 for 4 from their 20 overs, Hugh Scott taking 2 for 19. Kent replied with 150 for 5, Ben Compton scoring 47 and Sam Smith 56.
In the second encounter, Kent made 101 for 8 and Hampshire replied with 105 for 6 to win by four wickets, Ari Karveles taking 4 for 34.