Willis previews Somerset Sabres FPT tie

Thursday 14th May 2009

THEKent Spitfires will look to move a step closer to qualification for the knockout stages of the Friends Provident Trophy with victory over Somerset Sabres tomorrow. The Spitfires go into the fixture at Canterbury three points behind the Sabres with three matches left to play in the group.

Kent’s Professional Cricket Manager, Simon Willis (pictured), thinks five winswill be enough to earn a place in the last eight and victory against Somersetcould really open up the group as he explains: ’Somerset are going really well. Theyhave playedsome good cricketin this competition and will see themselves as favourites to win the group. Hopefully wecan use our home advantage and win because it’s an important game for both sides.’

The weather could prove a major factor with showers expected although Willis is clearly hoping that the elements don’t decide the outcome:’I think both sides will want to get out there and play as much cricket as possible. We are at home and there is a noticeable freshness about the boys after a few days off. Everyone is buzzing and they cannot wait to get out there in front of what should be a good Canterbury crowd.’

South African Wayne Parnell has made a big impact since joining on a short-term deal and he could earn an extended stay at St Lawrence. The 19-year-old playsthe final game of hisinitial deal against Warwickshire at Edgbaston on Wednesday, but his time with Kent might not be coming to an end as Willis explains: ’Wayne has performed well for us with bat and ball. He is a quality cricketer and has a bright future in the game. There is a chance he may come back after Twenty20 but there are still plenty ofthings to consider.’

The Kent Spitfireshave named their 12 for the game: Rob Key (C), Joe Denly, Martin van Jaarsveld, Geraint Jones (W), Justin Kemp, James Tredwell, Azhar Mahmood,Wayne Parnell, Rob Ferley, Simon Cook, Rob Joseph and James Hockley.

Gates open at 08.45am with thegame underway at 10.45am.

Tickets are still available. You can book yours in advance by calling 01227 456886 or online at www.kentccc.com.Alternatively, you canjust turn up on the day.

Picture courtesy of Terry Mahoney