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June 13, 2014
Kent 177 for 9 (Stevens 71) tied with Glamorgan 177 for 7 (Allenby 54, Stevens 3-22)
Darren Stevens' fantastic efforts with both ball and bat were not enough to seal victory for Kent as they were held to a tie in a sensational contest against Glamorgan.
Stevens was the pick of Kent's attack with 3 for 22 as Glamorgan reached 177 for 7 at Sophia Gardens and the 38-year-old dragged the visitors back from the brink of defeat with an amazing innings.
Kent needed 102 for victory in the final 10 overs and Stevens gave them a chance with a breathtaking 71 off 39 balls and, although Rob Key's men needed just three off the final over, sensational bowling from Michael Hogan ensured neither side would walk away with victory.
Kent's decision to field first appeared astute when Jacques Rudolph became Stevens' first victim in the opening over, although fellow opener Jim Allenby settled into his stride with three fours in an over off Mitchell Claydon. Allenby and Mark Wallace added 76 in just seven overs before the latter departed for 33 after holing out to Alex Blake off Adam Ball, with Daniel Bell-Drummond taking a magnificent catch in the deep to dismiss Murray Goodwin off Stevens soon after.
Allenby passed his half-century but fell for 54 after clubbing Stevens into the deep but his innings laid the platform for Glamorgan in the final eight overs. Chris Cooke with 34 and Darren Sammy, 19, took up the challenge to boost the home side's total to an imposing total.
It appeared to be more than enough as Kent fell to 76 for 4 at the halfway point, with Sammy claiming openers Bell-Drummond and Key in the fourth over, while Cosker ran out Sam Northeast and then cleaned up Blake for 22.
But Stevens rose to the challenge and, after thumping Sammy and Cosker for maximums to keep the scoreboard ticking over, the allrounder plundered the latter for two sixes and a four in an over to move past his half-century. Sammy also came in for more punishment before Andrew Salter tipped the balance back in Kent's favour by dismissing Stevens, who had hammered two fours and six sixes, in the 18th over.
Sam Billings, who shared in a 73-run partnership with Stevens, smashed six-four off Salter before departing in the penultimate over as Kent appeared certain to home in on victory. They needed three runs from the final six balls but Hogan removed both Claydon and Ball to set up a thrilling finale, and, although the visitors matched the total, Doug Bollinger was ran out off the final delivery as the match thrillingly finished as a tie.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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