LV=CC: Kent’s match with Essex finishes in a draw at Chelmsford

Wednesday 12th May 2010

Kent“s cricketers are still searching for their first win of the new LV= County Championship season after their game against Essex finished in a draw at Chelmsford.

Rob Key’s side resumed on 150 for five, on the final day – a lead of 283, and, in search of quick runs, it didn’t take Essex too long to finish off the innings.

Firstly Matt Coles was dismissed by former Kent seamer David Masters for six and James Hockley followed soon after – bowled for three by the same man. Danish Kaneria then got in on the act, having his fellow countryman Azhar Mahmood caught behind, to leave Kent stuttering at 171-8.

However Sam Northeast (pictured)was still there, and alongside a few lusty blows from number ten Simon Cook, the duo took the score to over 200, before Kaneria picked up Northeast for a well constructed 71 and Makhaya Ntini leg before the very next ball as Kent were all out for 204 – leaving Essex with a 338 victory target.

The home side started the challenging chase well as openers Billy Godleman and Alastair Cook put on 52 for the first wicket before the unlikely source of James Hockley pounced to dismiss Godleman for 31, caught by Martin van Jaarsveld.

The wicket didn’t seem to harm Essex though as Cook, in tandem with the talented Jaik Mickleburgh, took the score past 100 before another part-time spinner struck as Joe Denly trapped Mickleburgh in front to leave the home side on 116-2.

Denly didn’t have to wait long for his second scalp as he picked up the prized wicket of Cook; the England opener bowled for 72. The successive wickets took the wind out of the run chase and once Azhar Mahmood returned to remove the dangerous Ryan ten Doeschate for 13, the score was 169 for four with a draw looking the most likely result.

Essex avoided any further alarms and after 81.4 overs of their second innings were bowled the two captain’s shook hands on a draw with the home side on 254 for four – first innings centurion Tom Westley was left unbeaten on 58 with captain Mark Pettini 40 not out at the other end.

Picture:Getty Images