Worcestershire v Kent: Daryl Mitchell & Joe Clarke hit tons as Pears make 401 to win

Former Worcestershire captain Daryl Mitchell is now Division Two's top run scorer this season, having hit four centuries in his tally of 731 in seven matches at an average of 60.92
Former Worcestershire captain Daryl Mitchell is now Division Two's top run scorer this season, having hit four centuries in his tally of 731 in seven matches at an average of 60.92
Specsavers County Championship Division Two, New Road (day four):
Kent 260 & 474: Denly 227, Rouse 68; Leach 4-79
Worcestershire 336: Clarke 142 & 401-6: Mitchell 142, Clarke 110*, Yasir 5-132
Worcestershire (22 pts) beat Kent (5 pts) by four wickets
Scorecard

Joe Clarke hit his second century of the match and Daryl Mitchell also made a hundred as Worcestershire pulled off the third biggest run chase in their history to beat Kent at New Road.

Mitchell made 142, his fourth century in five Championship matches, while Clarke was unbeaten on 110 as the hosts reached 401-6 to win by four wickets.

Kent spinner Yasir Shah (5-132) caused a wobble with four quick wickets.

But Ross Whiteley (29) plundered vital late runs to see his side home.

England's Moeen Ali had earlier also been in belligerent mood, making a rapid 63 off 55 balls, hitting a six and eight fours, to help the home side win with 20 overs in hand, having begun the day day on 16-0.

Worcestershire's fifth win of the season, after two straight Championship defeats and Saturday's One-Day Cup semi-final exit, lifted them above Kent up to second in the Division Two table, 26 points behind leaders Notts, but with a game in hand.

Kent, who have also played a game less, are nine points further back going into next week's inaugural round of day-night games, when they go to Trent Bridge to play Notts and Worcestershire meet Durham at Chester-le-Street.

Worcestershire's biggest successful run chases

449-9 (Rhodes 92*, Curtis 85, Solanki 71): Beat Somerset by one wicket, Bath, 22 June 1996.

404-8 (Clarke 125, Mitchell 103): Beat Northants by two wickets, New Road, 26 August 2016.

Kent's players celebrate the dismissal of Ben Cox, the third of Yasir Shah's five wickets
Kent's players celebrate the dismissal of Ben Cox, the third of Yasir Shah's five wickets

Worcestershire director of cricket Steve Rhodes told BBC Hereford & Worcester:

"That chase by us was very special, the start we got, the impetus from Moeen Ali and then what was probably the match-winning stand between Daryl Mitchell and Joe Clarke.

"But we should pay tribute to Joe Denly as well. It was a fantastic knock. He was very difficult to bowl at, he was very solid.

"We needed two guys to get centuries and we got that. Joe has been short of runs this season. It has hurt him and he showed his sheer determination. To get two hundreds in a game is a wonderful effort.

Kent head coach Matt Walker told BBC Radio Kent:

"There was not a huge amount between the sides over the four days. We fought our way back into the game really well on the third day and put ourselves into a really good position. But we just didn't get it right.

"We didn't bowl well enough unfortunately. The wicket got a lot better and we didn't have the penetration to put enough pressure on them, especially early on to create chances.

"Mitchell and Clarke played extremely well. You think 400 to get on the last day is a pretty strong position to be in but, hats off to them."

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