Robbie Joseph stars in Kent win
Kent 247 (Northeast 112, Chambers 3-51) and 238 (van Jaarseveld 63, Topley 5-46) beat Essex 201 (Foster 88*, Stevens 6-60) and 227 (Godleman 58, Joseph 4-25)
Kent needed just 43 minutes to wrap up a 57-run victory over Essex at Chelmsford in the sides' opening County Championship Division Two match of the season. The home side had started the day on 198 for 6 in search of 285 for victory but after moving the total on to 218, they lost the remaining four wickets for the addition of just nine more runs in six overs to be dismissed for 227. Robbie Joseph claimed three of those wickets to fall in the session.
James Foster started the day positively for Essex, striking Darren Stevens to the cover boundary and then Tim Phillips sent the ball racing to the ropes with a flourishing off drive to keep the hosts' hopes of victory alive, but that bevy of runs saw Stevens removed from the attack to be replaced by Simon Cook.
Despite conceding four leg-byes, Joseph struck later in the same over when he had Phillips caught by Stevens at third slip for 12 as the left-hander went on the drive. David Masters fell without scoring three overs later when he attempted to pull a delivery from Cook but only succeeded in top-edging a skier to wicketkeeper Geraint Jones before Joseph took the last two wickets in successive overs, including that of Foster to end the home side's fading hopes.
The Essex captain had made 21 when he played forward and edged a delivery that swung away into the gloves of Jones while 17-year-old Reece Topley prodded forward to another superb outswinger to be caught by James Tredwell at first slip to complete a 'pair' on championship debut.