Match Preview: Kent v Glamorgan LV= CC, 12 – 15 June

Tuesday 11th June 2013

Men’s First Team

Match Preview: Kent v Glamorgan LV= CC, 12 – 15 June

Kent v Glamorgan

LV= CC Division Two

12 June – 15 June 2013, 11am start

The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence, Canterbury

Kent, in search of their first LV= County Championship win of the season, welcome Glamorgan to the Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence this week for a game they must win to kick-start their four-day campaign.

The season so far:

Kent moved off the bottom of division two last week after taking seven points from Hampshire in a much improved display at the Ageas Bowl. The county have now taken 47 points from seven outings, losing two and drawing five.

The draw against Hampshire was a great advert for championship cricket with stand-in captain Geraint Jones taking the plaudits for an aggressive declaration. In perfect batting conditions, the home side amassed 455 despite off-spinner Adam Riley, deputising for skipper James Tredwell, returning career-best figures of 7-150. Kent responded well with Sam Northeast (59) and Rob Key (47) putting on 106 for the opening wicket, but quick breakthroughs helped Hampshire reduce the visitors to 156-5 on the third morning. Kent, however, rallied through Ben Harmison, who posted his second successive half-century, and Darren Stevens who was typically belligerent – striking nine fours and a six in a 65-ball 60. The duo fell after putting on 102 for the sixth wicket and Jones declared soon after, on 321-7, after agreeing a final day run-chase with his Hampshire counterpart, Jimmy Adams.

Some declaration bowling from Key and Northeast allowed the hosts to race to 207 for three, off 35 overs, setting Kent a victory target of 342. The chase started in terrible fashion as former loanee David Balcombe returned to haunt Kent – reducing the Club to 41 for four. The visitors again rallied, and again it was Stevens who was the main perpetrator. In partnership with Daniel Bell-Drummond, the right-hander forced a stunning counter-attack – smashing 96 off 105-balls – before gloving Sean Ervine behind just before tea. Bell-Drummond (66) played his part in the 144-run stand, albeit in a more sedate fashion, but when he fell to spinner Danny Briggs Kent’s victory hopes were effectively over. It was left to Calum Haggett and Riley to stoically bat out 21 overs as Kent finished on 296-8, earning a very honourable draw.

Glamorgan are one place and five points ahead of the Invicta County, having taken 52 points from six games. Their solitary win came against Worcestershire back in April, when the Welshmen comprehensively took glory by ten wickets.

Last time out Mark Wallace’s side had to settle for a high-scoring draw, against Gloucestershire at Bristol. The visitors batted first and posted 448 – thanks to centuries from Murray Goodwin and Jim Allenby. The pair put on 185 for the fifth wicket to put the Welsh county on top. Gloucestershire responded with their own duo of centurions, captain Michael Klinger and former skipper Alex Gidman, and despite the heroics of Australian quick Michael Hogan (7-92), the visitors surrendered a thirty run lead. With rain and on a flat pitch, there was never really a chance of either side pushing for a win and a draw was called when Glamorgan reached 176 for two in their second innings. Opener Will Bragg made a patient, unbeaten 71 to help avoid any panic.

Previous meetings:

The two sides last met at Canterbury, in four-day cricket, last July when a flat wicket ensured a draw was always going to be the likely outcome. Brendan Nash (114) and Stevens (123) put on 204 for the fifth wicket on day one as Kent powered to 456. Wallace led for his side in Glamorgan’s response, striking a century of his own, as Kent were unable to force the follow-on despite four wickets for Stevens. The final day saw Kent’s batsmen effectively have a net session and Key took full advantage, scoring an unbeaten ton out of 168 for two, before the captain’s shook hands on a stalemate.

In the same fixture back in 2011, history was made when Canterbury hosted the first-ever floodlit four-day game. Glamorgan made the most of the pink-ball cricket, securing an eight-wicket success.

Click here for toread a detailed Kent v Glamorgan at Canterbury match history

Click here for details of previous fixtures between the two counties at Canterbury – including colour photos

Players to watch:

After claiming career-best figures against Hampshire, off-spinner Adam Riley has already proved to be a more than adequate replacement for captain James Tredwell. With the skipper on international duty with England, Riley has the chance to stake a first-team claim and his confidence will be high after his seven-wicket return on the south coast.

Glamorgan signed seamer Michael Hogan at the beginning of the season on a three-year deal and the Western Australian certainly hasn’t disappointed. The 32 year-old has already claimed 34 first-class wickets this season at an average of just 17. He is the spearhead of a youthful Glamorgan attack.

Pre-match chat

Kent all-rounder Darren Stevens has recently returned to form with the bat and the right-hander is looking forward to playing against a talented Glamorgan side: “They're doing okay and they've made some wise signings. Murray Goodwin is a good acquisition and Jimmy Allenby is scoring heavy runs. Michael Hogan from Australia is a good bowler and he got seven wickets recently so he will pose us problems. They've also got some good youngsters coming through so, all in all, they are a very good side.”

Team news to follow shortly