County Championship: Matt Coles takes career-best in Kent win

Matt Coles
Matt Coles returned to Kent this summer after two seasons with Hampshire
LV= County Championship Division Two, Grace Road
Leicestershire 159 & 123: Raine 41no; Coles 4-43, Stevens 3-27, Haggett 3-35
Kent 210 & 74-2: Denly 37no, Northeast 28no
Kent beat Leicestershire by eight wickets
Leicestershire 3 pts, Kent 20 pts
Match scorecard

Fast bowler Matt Coles completed career-best match figures of 10-98 as Kent polished off Leicestershire on the third day at Grace Road.

The home side added only 13 to their overnight 110-9 before Coles bowled Charlie Shreck to finish with 4-43.

Needing to score just 73 to win, Kent soon lost Daniel Bell-Drummond, who edged Ben Raine to slip.

Rob Key followed, but Joe Denly (37) and Sam Northeast (28) saw the visitors to 74-2 and an eight-wicket victory.

A rain hold-up prevented Kent finishing the match before lunch, but the end came soon after the resumption as Denly hit Raine (2-34) for his fifth boundary.

It was only their second win of the summer and lifted them two places to seventh in the Division Two table, with Leicestershire replacing them at the bottom.

Leicestershire head coach Andrew McDonald told BBC Radio Leicester:

"We got the game back to probably level-pegging, with a 50-run deficit and they had to bat last; you'd say (it was) even at the half-way point, with the first innings out of the way.

"It's disappointing we weren't able to conjure up a total that we were able to defend.

"Some of the decision-making wasn't quite right, and the challenge for the group is to get better for longer.

"If you make poor decisions as a batting unit, or bowling unit, or in the field, you're probably going to leave the game open and Kent were good enough to take the initiative."

Kent captain Sam Northeast:

"Matt Coles, Calum Haggett and Darren Stevens really stuck to their task well after we lost Ivan Thomas to a side strain almost at the start of the game, and to bowl Leicestershire out twice and set up the game in the way we did was pleasing.

"We have to take it as it comes, but we seem to be going from place to place and playing on this type of 'result wicket' and I don't think it's great for cricket in general, and producing England players and good cricket.

"We've taken away the points, so people will probably say 'just be happy', but I think someone higher up than myself probably needs to look at what is happening at the moment with Division Two wickets."

Top Stories