Kent fall short de­spite Coles’ ton

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Kent Cricket -

A sen­sa­tional hun­dred by Matt Coles al­most se­cured Kent a re­mark­able win in their Royal Lon­don One-Day Cup quar­ter-fi­nal against Sur­rey.

The all-rounder, bat­ting at No.9, smashed nine sixes in his stun­ning 73-ball knock, tak­ing Kent to the brink of vic­tory be­fore go­ing down by 17 runs on the Duck­worth-Lewis method at the Kia Oval on Thurs­day.

Sur­rey were all out for 273, which in­cluded 112 from opener Jason Roy, be­fore Kent – chas­ing a re­vised tar­get of 251 off 40 overs af­ter a rain de­lay – looked down and out at 101-7.

But Coles and Dar­ren Stevens had other ideas, shar­ing an eighth-wicket stand of 39 be­fore Stevens de­parted for 37.

Mitch Clay­don added 29 with Coles but was bowled for four be­fore last-man Matt Hunn, who fin­ished un­beaten on one, helped add 64 .

Coles was fi­nally out for 100 af­ter top edg­ing Tom Cur­ran and was caught by wick­et­keeper Ben Foakes.

A dis­ap­pointed Coles said: “It would have been eas­ier to take had we lost by 50 or 60 runs rather than such a small mar­gin.

“Of course you look back and won­der what might have been had I taken a sin­gle here or there when I could have done – it’s a fine line when you get as close as we did.

“Say­ing that, I am not go­ing to dwell on it. If you do, it starts to eat away at you and that’s no good.” Kent’s run chase had started dis­as­trously be­fore the rain ar­rived, los­ing Daniel Bell-Drum­mond for one af­ter be­ing caught by Ku­mar San­gakkara off Sam Cur­ran (2-34). Joe Denly (13) was next to fall to Cur­ran, caught at mid-wicket by Rory Burns be­fore the rain ar­rived. When play re­sumed af­ter a break of more than an hour, Fabian Cow­drey (7) was bowled by Tom Cur­ran (3-22).

He re­peated the act soon af­ter, re-ar­rang­ing Sam North­east’s stumps when the cap­tain had made 23.

Sam Billings came and went for three af­ter be­ing stumped by Foakes off the sec­ond ball from spin­ner Za­far An­sari (2-39). Billings’ dis­missal left Kent 49-5.

Alex Blake (17), who has been Kent’s bat­ting saviour in plenty of lim­ited overs games this sea­son, was next to go. Blake hit An­sari for six be­fore the slow left-armer got his re­venge the next ball to leave Kent 79-6.

Stevens and James Tred­well then added 28 to­gether be­fore Gareth Batty (1-61) had Tred­well caught be­hind for three.

Stevens con­tin­ued to take the fight to Sur­rey, reach­ing 37 off 35 balls be­fore James Burke (1-23) had him caught by Foakes with the score on 140.

Ear­lier, opener Roy’s 112 dom­i­nated Sur­rey’s in­nings. The Eng­land lim­ited overs rep­re­sen­ta­tive hit 13 fours and one six in his 116-ball stay be­fore Tred­well (3-47) had him caught in the deep by Blake.

Roy’s de­par­ture sig­nalled a start of a stun­ning fight­back by the Kent bowlers as Sur­rey col­lapsed from 192-3 to 273 all out.

Burns (42) and An­sari (35) were the only bats­men to of­fer any re­sis­tance as Clay­don (3-62) and Coles (3-47) com­bined to wrap up the in­nings.

Stevens (1-32) had ear­lier got rid of opener Steven Davies, caught be­hind by Billings, af­ter he had hit four bound­aries in his 17.

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