LV=CC: Somerset v Kent match preview

Sunday 18th July 2010

Somerset v Kent
LV=County Championship Division One
20 July – 23 July 2010. 11am start

With their t20 aspirations coming to an end for 2010, Kent enter a crucial stage of the season as they look to maintain their place in division one of the LV= County Championship, starting on Tuesday with a game against Somerset at Taunton.

Kent currently sit a place off the bottom of the table, with one win from their opening nine matches. Somerset, on the other hand, are well placed in fourth position, after sealing three wins from their opening eight games. Both sides are desperate for the points so the clash promises to be an intriguing one.

The visitors will again be without captain Rob Key so batsman Martin van Jaarsveld (pictured)will continue to take the reins as his side look to improve on their last outing; a disappointing showing at Hampshire. Kent had first use of the Rose Bowl surface but, despite half centuries from Joe Denly and Sam Northeast, no-one went on to make a telling contribution as they were bundled out for 251.

In reply the home side made hay. Former Kent-man Michael Carberry struck 158 and added 254 for the fourth wicket with South African Neil McKenzie (113) as Hampshire romped to 553-7 declared. Kent fared even worse in their second innings as van Jaarsveld“s unbeaten 82 was all in vain as they fell to an innings and 111 run defeat after being bowled out for just 191.

Somerset“s last participation in this competition came back in early June when they brushed aside Warwickshire by 181 runs at Edgbaston. Marcus Trescothick“s side batted first and posted a modest 268, largely thanks to fifties from the captain himself and James Hildreth. Soon enough though the total seemed a decent one as Murali Kartik“s 5-30 ripped through the Bears card to skittle them for 140. Somerset extended the lead in their second innings, despite crumbling to 183 all-out, with another former Kent player making runs, this time Ben Phillips with 55. Set 311 to win, Warwickshire never came close, Kartik added to his first innings haul with six more wickets as the home side were sent packing for 130 to hand Somerset a comprehensive win.

After winning their final three t20 games, spirits will be high in the Kent camp and despite Key missing out with a broken finger, Darren Stevens, James Tredwell and Amjad Khan all return to the squad as the St Lawrence outfit go in search of a vital victory. Team director Paul Farbrace will select from the following 12 players.

Kent: van Jaarsveld (C), Denly, Northeast, Jones (W), Blake, Stevens, Tredwell, Coles, Bandara, Cook, Khan, Shaw