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Kent squad to face Leicestershire in Specsavers County Championship

Friday 22nd April 2016

Men’s First Team

Kent have named a 15-man squad to travel to Leicestershire for the Specsavers County Championship match at the Fischer County Ground.

After four days without play at Worcester, Kent hope to play their first competitive cricket on Sunday (11am start).

All eyes will again be on Sam Northeast who will have the option to bowl first without the traditional coin toss and the Kent skipper welcomes the move.

The 26-year-old right-hander said: "As I see it, these changes are a big step in the right direction. Last July I made my feelings known about the poor standard of pitches being prepared for our games on the road in Division Two.

"You don’t mind the odd sporting pitch here and there, but it was starting to become a general theme, a trend. So I’m glad something has been done by the ECB to help redress the balance.

"Dispensing with the toss ought to lead to fairer pitches which will help batsmen in general and spin bowlers across the country to get involved in four-day cricket again."

There are three new faces from the squad that travelled to Worcester: Adam Ball, David Griffiths and Imran Qayyum are added to the squad after impressive performances for the second XI this week.

Wicketkeeper Adam Rouse is in line for his Championship debut for Kent and Sam Northeast has six seamers and two specialist spinners to choose from.

Leicestershire won their opening fixture against Glamorgan by ten wickets this week at Cardiff.

For the hosts, Ned Eckersley is out with a broken finger and ex-Essex batsman Mark Pettini is included in the 13-man squad despite a back injury. Entry to day one of this match is free of charge.

Kent squad: 17 Sam Northeast (c), 23 Daniel Bell-Drummond, 58 Sean Dickson, 6 Joe Denly, 3 Darren Stevens, 10 Alex Blake, 24 Adam Ball, 12 Adam Rouse (wk), 25 Calum Haggett, 26 Matt Coles, 8 Mitchell Claydon, 33 Adam Riley, 11 Imran Qayyum, 18 David Griffiths, 27 Hugh Bernard.

Leicestershire squad: 55 Mark Cosgrove (c), 2 Paul Horton, 81 Niall O’Brien (wk), 8 Angus Robson, 17 Neil Dexter, 6 Mark Pettini, 14 Aadil Ali, 22 Jigar Naik, 35 Wayne White, 44 Ben Raine, 27 Clint McKay, 32 Zak Chappell, 4 Charlie Shreck.

LEICESTERSHIRE v KENT STATS

o Kent are unbeaten in 12 matches versus Leicestershire (W5 D7).

o Leicestershire (W2, D3) have only lost once in their last six matches; having managed only one win in 43 games immediately before this run (D16, L26).

o Kent have not tasted defeat in their last six visits to Leicestershire (W3 D3).

o Matt Coles (Kent) recorded his best ever match figures when these sides last met (10/98, July 2015); he’s taken 14 more wickets against Leicestershire than any other opponent in first-class cricket (45).

o Clint McKay took innings figures of 6/73 in Leicestershire’s most recent game (Glamorgan); he’s only ever managed better twice before in first-class cricket, with one of these performances coming against Kent in 2015 (6/54).