LV=CC: Yorkshire v Kent day two match report

Monday 13th September 2010

Yorkshire v Kent
LV = County Championship Division One
Monday, 13 September – Thursday, 16 September 2010
Headingley, Leeds

Day two match report

Yorkshire first innings: 261 all out, 76.3 overs
Bairstow 64, Patterson 39*, Gale 39
Nel 6-62, Coles 2-68, Tredwell 1-0

Kent first innings: 216 for six, 57 overs
van Jaarsveld 89, Blake 40*, Denly 26
Ashraf 3-16, Hannon-Dalby 1-36, Shahzad 1-64

An innings of 89 from Martin van Jaarsveld (pictured) kept Kent in touch on day two of this must win LV=County Championship division one clash, as the visitors finished on 216 for six at stumps – just 45 runs behind Yorkshire’s first innings effort at Headingley.

With a win imperative, as Kent attempt to stave off relegation in the final round of championship fixtures, Rob Key’s men battled hard to stay in contention against the title challenging Tykes. After dismissing the home side for 261, thanks to six wickets from Dewald Nel, the St Lawrence outfit stumbled to 142 for five, before van Jaarsveld and Alex Blake (40 not out) put on 68 to put Kent back into the game. The late departure of van Jaarsveld would have boosted Andrew Gale’s troops but the game currently stands on a knife edge going into day three.

After the morning session was washed out through rain, play finally got underway at 12.40pm and it didn“t take Nel long to complete his five-wicket haul. Jonathan Bairstow only managed to add two to his overnight score before he edged the South African born quick to van Jaarsveld at second slip to depart for 64. Then, in his very next over, Nel took his tally to six when he trapped Oliver Hannon-Dalby in front for one to send the home side tumbling to 209 for nine.

On so many occasions this season Kent have struggled to mop up the tail, and infuriatingly for them, today was no different as their knack of allowing teams off the hook reared its ugly head again. The last wicket pairing of Steven Patterson and Moin Ashraf frustrated the visitors, adding 52 vital runs for the final wicket. Patterson (39*) was allowed to farm the strike as he scored the majority of the runs before the introduction of spin did for Ashraf as he nicked James Tredwell“s third ball to Geraint Jones behind the stumps on ten. The home side had battled up to a respectable – considering the sporty nature of the wicket – 261 all-out, as the last wicket pairing saw the Tykes through to an extra batting bonus point.

Nel was the outstanding bowler for Kent returning fine figures of six for 62 and he was ably assisted by Matt Coles (2-68). It was now time for Kent“s batsmen to stand up and be counted in the best batting conditions of the game so far.

Sam Northeast and Joe Denly got the reply off to a solid start, putting on 44 for the first wicket, before both fell in quick succession. Denly was the first to depart for 26; caught at slip by Adil Rashid off the bowling of Hannon-Dalby, and then, in the next over, Ajmal Shahzad accounted for Northeast (20), as the youngster was caught at the wicket by Gerard Brophy. Suddenly, a solid start had turned into 46 for two as Kent faced a mountain to climb. Skipper Key was joined in the middle by vice captain van Jaarsveld and the pair grinded out the final few overs before tea as the visitors went into the interval on 50 for two with the match perfectly poised.

With 42 overs due to be bowled in the evening session, both sides knew a strong spell would see them take control of the game. Van Jaarsveld resumed positively, hitting Shahzad for two fours in an over while Key continued to battle on and their fifty partnership came up in the 25th over when van Jaarsveld hit the same bowler for six. The visitors were making decent progress at 113 for two; moving along at over four runs per over.

Then, just after van Jaarsveld had moved serenely to his half-century off 55 balls, Kent were dealt a double blow. Firstly Key fell leg before to Rashid for 25, and six balls later Darren Stevens was given out LBW to Ashraf for no score – despite the club’s player-of-the-season seemingly indicating there was some bat involved. At 132 for four the visitors were still 129 runs behind the Tykes, with both sides still not willing to give an inch. Unfortunately, when Jones was bowled by Ashraf for six to make it 142 for five, it looked as though the title challengers were taking control – until van Jaarsveld found an ally in the form of 21 year-old Blake.

The pair batted with purpose to close down on Yorkshire’s total, Blake played his shots and South African van Jaarsveld cruised along with a strike-rate of over 70. They posted their fifty stand together before taking the visitors past the two-hundred mark to claim their first batting bonus point. Then, just as it looked as though the duo might see out the day and leave Kent in a strong position, Ashraf bagged his third victim in the penultimate over of the day, and it was the prize wicket of van Jaarsveld. Eleven short of a deserved ton, the right-hander edged behind to Brophy as the sixth wicket stand of 68 came to an end. Blake saw out the final over of the day to remain unbeaten on 40, and will return on Wednesday with Tredwell for company as Kent resume on 216 for six, with honours very much even.

Kent : Northeast, Denly, van Jaarsveld, Key (C), Jones (W), Stevens, Blake, Tredwell, Coles, Nel, Cook

Yorkshire: Lyth, Rudolph, McGrath, Gale (C), Bairstow, Brophy (W), Rashid, Shahzad, Patterson, Hannon-Dalby, Ashraf

Picture: Sarah Ansell