Harmi­son: Mo­men­tum can push us over line

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Sport - By Alex Hoad

Bullish Ben Harmi­son says Kent are on the thresh­old of glory – it’s just up to the con­fi­dent play­ers to take the fi­nal steps in a po­ten­tially historic month for the club.

The 28-year-old has been in good form dur­ing Kent’s fine run of form, with just one de­feat in the last 12 matches in all com­pe­ti­tions, and has im­pressed with the bat and ball, hav­ing talked up his bowl­ing am­bi­tions since his ar­rival from Durham nearly three years ago.

Harmi­son re­vealed: “It’s been bril­liant. We’ve got that win­ning men­tal­ity at the minute where we seem to find ways of win­ning, even when the chips are down. That’s what hap­pens when you win a few games, some­thing clicks for you and you get over the line.”

Harmi­son said back-to-back LV= County Cham­pi­onship Divi­sion 2 wins in June and July ‘def­i­nitely’ sparked the mo­men­tum which has taken Kent top of the Royal Lon­don One-Day Cup group and within 23 points of the pro­mo­tion places in four-day cricket, with two games in hand.

He said: “We were talk­ing about that win­ning habit, get­ting on a roll so when you’re half-way through a game and it’s 50-50 we’ve got that con­fi­dence now to grab the game by the scruff of the neck, get the runs we need or bowl tight with the ball and get over the line.

“It’s all down to con­fi­dence, in each other, in the team, and individually. “Every­one’s look­ing at the ta­bles, they know where we are. We have games in hand (in the Cham­pi­onship) and hope­fully one more win in the Royal Lon­don will give us a home quar­ter-fi­nal which is what we want. “We’ll take it game by game, but with this form and

th is con­fi­dence you’ve got to cash in, be­cause you know how quick it comes and can go.”

He added: “We have got to keep push­ing each other be­cause this squad can go as far as it wants, with the tal­ent level we’ve got.

“We know we have five games left, we have points and hope­fully pro­mo­tion to play for, we can’t wait to get stuck into the Hamp­shire game on Fri­day.

“The last cou­ple of months we’ve been beat­ing Divi­sion 1 teams, Sur­rey, Som­er­set – hard teams to beat. Other teams could be look­ing at us think­ing ‘we don’t want to play Kent.’

“Long may it con­tinue. Septem­ber could be an ex­cit­ing month for Kent, there is a lot to look for­ward to. Hope­fully we can keep per­form­ing, keep the run go­ing and hope­fully go­ing into the last month of the sea­son we’ll be go­ing for pro­mo­tion and a Lord’s fi­nal, so it’s all to play for.”

Harmi­son did not bowl a sin­gle over of lim­ited overs cricket in 2013, tak­ing 1-161 in 37 overs of Cham­pi­onship bowl­ing, how­ever he has taken a wicket ev­ery one of the five times he has been thrown the ball in lim­ited-overs cricket in the past six weeks.

He said: “It’s been nice. The last cou­ple of years I’ve not bowled that much, I’ve been try­ing to get my body back to where it was fit­ness-wise.

“I’ve been bowl­ing more and more, I said since I’ve signed I’d push my way in as a bowler and hope­fully a few wick­ets back it up in the lim­ited chance I have had.

“I’ve been turn­ing up to games not re­ally know­ing what my role will be, but I’m happy to do any­thing re­ally, I feel like I’m at the top of my game at the minute, con­tribut­ing with bat and ball.

“I’m feel­ing as good as I ever have, even bet­ter than when I was tak­ing wick­ets at Durham – touch wood I can take it on next year with the club and play a big­ger role as an all-rounder.”

He added: “It’s def­i­nitely as much fun as I’ve had at Kent. It helps when you’re win­ning. The last two months we’ve been win­ning and peo­ple are buzzing, lots of peo­ple are step­ping up to the plate this year, the chang­ing room has a good mix of youth and ex­pe­ri­ence.”

‘Hope­fully we’ll be go­ing for pro­mo­tion

and a Lord’s fi­nal, so it’s all to play for’

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