LV=CC: Kent v Warwickshire match preview

Sunday 2nd May 2010

Kent v Warwickshire
LV=County Championship Division One
4 May – 7 May 2010
St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury

Kent will look to claim their first success of the season when they welcome Warwickshire to the St Lawrence Ground for an LV=County Championship Division One clash.

Both sides have had a mixed start to the season with Rob Key’s men recording just two draws, from their opening three championship games, while the Bears only success came against Hampshire last week. The star of the show for Warwickshire, in the eight-wicket win, was young England prodigy Chris Woakes. He cracked an unbeaten 136 batting at number nine in their first innings and recorded match figures of six for 135.

The last time the two sides met in the longer form of the game was back in the summer of 2007 where rain meant honours remained even despite Kent dominating their home match. Batting first a trio of centuries from Martin van Jaarsveld (pictured), Geraint Jones and Yasir Arafat saw them rack up 550 for nine before Ryan McLaren’s 5-24 meant Warwickshire were bundled out for just 107. After enforcing the follow on Kent endeavoured to bowl the Bears out again but they were thwarted by the rain as Warwickshire battled to 268-7 before the game was declared a draw. McLaren added to his first innings haul with three more wickets while James Tredwell picked up 3-64. Darren Maddy stood firm for the visitors with an unbeaten 148.

In the return fixture, at Edgbaston, Kent were again on top before their chances of a win were ruined by the elements yet again. McLaren once again starred, his 4-42 helped his side skittle out Warwickshire for 213. In reply Key’s 153 and 85 from van Jaarsveld saw Kent up to 400-4 declared, but unfortunately the rains meant Kent were unable to push home their advantage as a draw was called.

South African fast bowler Makhaya Ntini will make his home debut for Kent while Azhar Mahmood returns to the squad after being rested for the Lancashire match last week. Matt Coles is also included in the 12 and will hope to keep his place after impressing with the bat at Old Trafford last week. Robbie Joseph is still continuing his comeback from a shoulder operation while James Tredwell is in the West Indies with the England T20 squad.

Kent (from): Key, Denly, Jones, van Jaarsveld, Northeast, Stevens, Hockley, Azhar Mahmood, Cook, Khan, Ntini, Coles