Man of the Match: Tom Banton
Somerset beat Kent earlier this season comfortably by 47 runs.
Back Kent to win this clash.
The Kent Spitfires have established themselves as one of the top sides this season. They are at the 2nd spot in the points table with 6 wins and 2 losses in 8 matches. However, their next challenge is against Somerset who have already beaten them once in the season and quite convincingly. And even though Somerset are at 5th place in the table right now, they have won 2 matches in a row and are looking in good form. We should hence a cracking game on the cards.
Kent Spitfires have had a good run this season so far. They are sitting pretty at the 2nd place right now and will be looking to seal a top place. They are coming off a 28-run victory against Essex in their last match.
One of the main reasons for Kent’s good show this summer has been their strong batting performances. Captain and opener Daniel Bell-Drummond has led from the front with 258 runs at a strike rate of 166.4. Even in the last match against Essex, he was the top scorer with a fantastic 50 off 29 balls. Jack Leaning (232 runs at 149.6), Jordan Cox (223 runs at 123.8) and Zak Crawley (218 runs at 163.9) have been the other consistent scorers. These 4 give Kent a solid batting unit.
On the bowling front, fast bowler Matt Milnes, who delivered a match-winning spell of 2-15 in the last match, has been Kent’s highest wicket-taker with 13 wickets at an economy of 8.49. Fred Klaassen (11 wickets at 8.20) and Darren Stevens (7 wickets at 8.71) have done a good supporting job too.
Zak Crawley, Daniel Bell-Drummond (c), Joe Denly, Jack Leaning, Jordan Cox (wk), Alex Blake, Darren Stevens, Grant Stewart, Qais Ahmad, Matt Milnes, Fred Klaassen
Zak Crawley, Darren Stevens, Adam Milne, Matt Milnes, Joe Denly, Alex Blake, Daniel Bell-Drummond, Jordan Cox, Fred Klaassen, Jack Leaning, Qais Ahmad
Somerset has had some bad luck this season. Two of their matches were abandoned due to rain which ruined their chances of climbing up the ladder after they had beaten Kent early in the season by 47 runs. However, Somerset has continued playing good cricket and have won both of their last two matches against Surrey and Hampshire respectively.
Somerset’s batting hasn’t been that inconsistent but they are finding their groove. In the last match against Hampshire, opener Tom Banton (77 off 37 balls) and middle-order batsman Will Smeed (63* off 44 balls) got their respective high scores of the season. In the match before that against Surrey, it was James Hildreth’s unbeaten 72 off 59 balls at the top that helped the team chase down a target of 147 in 18.4 overs with 7 wickets to spare. If the likes of Devon Conway and Lewis Goldsworthy can get going, they will pose a real threat to the opposition.
Josh Davey (8 wickets at an economy of 10.65) and Marchant de Lange (7 wickets at 7.26) have been the best bowlers for Kent this season. But the others have been ordinary and need to pick up the intensity.
Tom Banton (wk), James Hildreth, Devon Conway, Will Smeed, Lewis Goldsworthy, Tom Lammonby, Lewis Gregory (c), Craig Overton, Marchant de Lange, Josh Davey, Max Waller
Tom Lammonby, Marchant de Lange, Ben Green, Lewis Gregory, Craig Overton, Max Waller, Will Smeed, Jack Brooks, Devon Conway, Lewis Goldsworthy, Tom Banton
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||16||0 mm.||1.89 k/h||From: ENE||100%|
|03h||16||0 mm.||1.33 k/h||From: ESE||100%|
|06h||16||0 mm.||1.25 k/h||From: NNW||100%|
|09h||16||1.84 mm.||0.77 k/h||From: NW||100%|
|12h||17||0.81 mm.||0.81 k/h||From: NE||100%|
|15h||20||1.18 mm.||1 k/h||From: ENE||76%|
|18h||19||0.38 mm.||1.79 k/h||From: E||77%|
|21h||15||0.11 mm.||0.92 k/h||From: E||83%|
The pitch at the St Lawrence Ground is generally a very good batting surface. As in most English pitches, seamers do get some help early on. But this track typically remains true throughout for the batters.
There are some showers and a thunderstorm expected at Canterbury tomorrow and the match is expected to be disrupted at some point.
The average first innings score at Canterbury in the T20 Blast is 177 but the average first innings winning score on the venue is 182. There have been 11 totals above the score of 190 here, with the highest being 250-6 by Surrey against Kent in 2018. In this season, Kent’s 236/3 against Essex remains the highest team total here.
Of the 39 T20 games played on this venue, 26 have been won by the team batting first. However, with some showers expected tomorrow, the team winning the toss might be tempted to chase.
In the last 5 matches between Kent and Somerset, Kent has won 3 matches while Somerset has won 2. But Somerset has won both the last two encounters between the two sides, including the one earlier this season where they hammered Kent easily. This will be an interesting clash as Somerset is picking up form. But their bowling is pretty ordinary and Kent’s batting is their main strength. That might be the difference in this match.
Back Kent to win this clash.