Crawley mak­ing the most of op­por­tu­ni­ties

Cricket

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Sport Starts Here - By Josh Ford­ham

Kent Cricket’s open­ing bats­man Zak Crawley is hop­ing to stake a claim for a place in the side when the sea­son starts in April.

Crawley, who turned 20 last week, hit is maiden List A half-cen­tury in Kent’s open­ing match of the Su­per50 se­ries tour­na­ment in An­tigua.

He scored 60 off 73 balls as they were beaten by 35 runs by Guyana and then was left stranded on 99 not out in the county’s nine-wicket win against Lee­ward Is­lands Hur­ri­canes on Tues­day.

The Hur­ri­canes were bowled out for 183 thanks to three wickets each for Will Gid­man and Ivan Thomas.

Crawley and Dick­son (44 not out) put on an un­beaten 106 run part­ner­ship to see Kent home with nine wickets to spare.

Speak­ing af­ter the Guyana match, Crawley said: “It’s great prepa­ra­tion for the sea­son and if I can man­age to get a few scores, then hope­fully I can get a bit of con­fi­dence into the early sea­son. It’s im­por­tant for me to get my head down on this trip and make a claim to play in the sum­mer.”

Kent had re­stricted Guyana to 233 thanks to a ca­reer best 5-31 from Mitch Clay­don. They then suf­fered a mid­dle-order col­lapse af­ter Crawley had scored 60 as they lost by 35 runs.

Al­lan Don­ald has started his role as as­sis­tant coach of the club and is lead­ing the tour with 2nd XI coach Min Pa­tel.

Head coach Matt Walker is in Aus­tralia as part of the Eng­land T20 coach­ing set-up.

For­mer South African in­ter­na­tional Don­ald was full of praise for Kent’s bowl­ing at­tack as they bowled out Ja­maica for 156 in their se­cond Su­per50 match on Sun­day.

Thomas and Joe Denly both took ca­reer bests – of 4-30 and 4-35 re­spec­tively – in Kent’s four-wicket win. Alex Blake hit 74 not out in the suc­cess­ful run chase.

Don­ald said: “Ivan Thomas was fan­tas­tic and Mitch Clay­don was just very sim­ple and bowled a good spell in the first five overs for not much dam­age.”

The South African added: “Cap­tain Joe Denly was fan­tas­tic and I look for­ward to work­ing with him and he will be a great as­set in four-day cricket for us as well. He’s got great con­trol and com­po­sure and there’s no doubt in Cham­pi­onship cricket he will be an as­set”

Crawley is en­joy­ing work­ing with Don­ald and be­lieves he has al­ready had a pos­i­tive im­pact with the squad.

He said: “He has brought an in­ten­sity to the squad and de­mands a lot from us in the field. You can feel there is a dif­fer­ent buzz around our field­ing.”

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