Nottinghamshire v Kent: Steven Mullaney hits career-best as hosts remain on top

Steven Mullaney
Steven Mullaney was at the crease for over six hours and faced 276 balls in making a career-best 168
Specsavers County Championship Division Two, Trent Bridge (day two):
Kent 180 & 105-4: Billings 39*; Gurney 2-28
Nottinghamshire 371: Mullaney 168, Hales 85; Coles 3-99
Nottinghamshire 7 pts, Kent 3 pts
Kent trail Notts by 86 runs

A career-best 168 from opener Steven Mullaney helped Nottinghamshire remain in control over Kent at Trent Bridge.

Mullaney hit two sixes and 23 fours as he put on 222 for the fourth wicket in 47.5 overs with Alex Hales (85).

But the innings fell away, Matt Coles taking 3-99 and Will Gidman 2-48 as the hosts fell from 326-4 to 371 all out.

Kent closed 86 runs behind on 105-4 in their second innings but, worryingly for Notts and England, fast bowler Jake Ball limped off the field.

The 26-year-old, who has made three Test appearances for England and is in contention for next week's first Test against South Africa at Lord's, had taken the wicket of Daniel Bell-Drummond for six, but went off after the first ball of his third over.

Sam Billings ended the day unbeaten on 39 but he will now leave to play for England Lions in their game against South Africa, which gets under way at Worcester on Thursday - and will be replaced in the Kent line-up by 20-year-old Joe Weatherley.

Nottinghamshire's Steven Mullaney told BBC Radio Nottingham:

"It was nice to get a career best. But it means it's another round I have to buy the lads at the end of the season, so that's disappointing.

"We had spoken about creating opportunities in this game and we earned the right to get through the tricky period last night and cash in this morning.

"Batting with Alex Hales makes it easier for me to bat around him but it was a great partnership. It's the second time we've put 200 on, so we go all right together."

Kent's Matt Coles told BBC Radio Kent:

"Mullaney batted very well. He showed us how to bat really. You need to bat time and build a big score.

"I'm not too keen on the pink ball, to be honest. Personally, you can see a bit of a tail or something to it.

"You can't really pick it up in the field in certain positions to certain shots. I found it to be pretty tough, to be honest."

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