Published: 10th July, 2019
Kent beat Surrey by five wickets at the Kia Oval and claim their third win of the season in the Specsavers County Championship.
Chasing 121 to win, Kent lost Zac Crawley and Joe Denly in the first over of their chase to Morne Morkel. When Sean Dickson and Daniel Bell-Drummond fell either side of lunch they still needed 71 to win but Ollie Robinson settled any nerves with an unbeaten 51 off just 44 balls including four boundaries and a six over long on off Dean Elgar to win the match.
Victory keeps Kent fifth in the first division table, 43 points ahead of bottom of the table Nottinghamshire. Surrey are sixth, three points below them. Both have played nine games.
Surrey had sensed an unlikely victory when Morkel produced a superb first over.
Crawley, half-forward, was caught behind off the second ball and Denly was nearly dismissed off the fourth when the South African nipped one back sharply and it only just missed the stumps. But Denly’s reprieve was short-lived. He was turned around by the next delivery and lost his off stump.
It left Kent 0 for 2 but Dickson and Bell-Drummond negotiated the rest of Morkel’s four-over new ball spell and had taken the score to 40 when Dickson unwisely played across the line to the last delivery before lunch to fall leg-before to Rikki Clarke for 18.
After lunch, Foakes took a superb one-handed catch diving to his left when Bell-Drummond (26) got an inside edge to Sam Curran which left Kent 50 for 4. Morkel came back into the attack in the 22nd over, by which time Robinson and Heino Kuhn had added 37 runs for the fifth wicket to tilt the balance Kent’s way.
Gareth Batty had Kuhn caught at slip for 22, but Kent’s target was just 24 runs by then and Robinson led them home with some confident stroke-play.
Earlier, Surrey lost their last four wickets in the first hour as their second innings ended on 218.
Darren Stevens completed the 22nd five-for of his career when Clarke was caught behind for 31 to become the 43-year-old’s 486th first-class victim.
Matt Milnes had made the first breakthrough when Curran (29) pushed at an excellent delivery that straightened on him and was caught behind by Robinson.
Milnes also had Batty (2) lbw before Harry Podmore wrapped up the innings when Jordan Clark (15) was bowled playing a defensive shot.
Surrey now travel to Nottinghamshire for their next County Championship fixture, starting on Saturday 13th July.