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Van Jaarsveld’s ton in a losing cause

Friday 15th May 2009

Kent v Somerset, Friends Provident Trophy Group B, Canterbury.
By Mark Pennell
KENT“S hopes of qualifying for this year“s knock out stages of the Friends Provident Trophy now hang in the balance following their 45-run defeat to Group B winners Somerset in Canterbury on Saturday.
Having suffered their third qualifying defeat in this their final home game, Spitfires will now need to win in Scotland on Monday and then again at Edgbaston next Wednesday if they are to certainly make the quarter-final draw for 2009.
Despite a stunning, one-day career-best innings of 131 not out from 125 balls by vice-captain Martin van Jaarsveld, Kent were always behind the asking rate having lost wickets at regular intervals throughout the opening 40 overs in their pursuit of Somerset“s excellent 296 all out.
Former Kent all-rounder Peter Trego started the rot by tempting Joe Denly (0) to drive to mid-off in only the second over then fellow opener Rob Key ran himself out when risking a single to another former St Lawrence favourite, Ben Phillips who was positioned at mid-off.
Justin Kemp chipped away for 25 before heaving across the line to be bowled by Trego, Geraint Jones chipped a low, full-toss to mid-on then later James Tredwell missed a cross batted slog to give Trego figures of 4-56.
In between times, Kent continued to haemorrhage wickets as Wayne Parnell missed an attempted slog against Max Waller to be bowled and Azhar Mahmood obligingly picked out Marcus Trescothick at cow corner to go for a disappointing 15.
Amidst the mayhem van Jaarsveld kept his cool, cantering to his sixth one-day ton for Kent from 103 balls and with 10 fours, it was his second hundred against Somerset and his first time past 37 in the Trophy this season.
He kept losing partners however as Simon Cook (8), James Tredwell (3) and Rob Ferley (7) all perished in the dying overs as unbeaten Somerset clinched their fifth win in six matches.
Though Somerset lost six wickets for 20 runs inside five overs toward the end of their innings, the serious damage had already been done by their determined and consistent top five.
Marcus Trescothick (56), Craig Kieswetter (25), Justin Langer (77) and Zander de Bruyn (72) all chipped in with steady, responsible innings as only Simon Cook, with 3-29, posed many early headaches in his unchanged, 10-over stint as Kent“s first change.
Parnell came back to inspire the collapse and finish with 3-43, but in truth Somerset already had enough runs on the board to defend and deservedly went on to secure a victory that sealed their place as group winners.