Kent v Glamorgan, LV= County Championship Div Two, Canterbury, 3rd day May 12, 2015

Denly repels Hogan to leave Kent in charge

Glamorgan 281 and 32 for 1 require a further 372 to beat Kent 357 and 327 (Denly 66, Hogan 4-65)

Joe Denly, seen here for his old county Middlesex, helped put Kent in a strong position © Getty Images

Kent strengthened their chances of securing their opening win of the season by removing Glamorgan's dependable leader Jacques Rudolph in the closing moments of the third day's play in Canterbury.

Push-driving at a Matt Coles offcutter, Jacques, the South African left-hander, inside-edged the ball onto his leg stump to go for 14 and leave his side with a mountain to climb as they chase 404 for victory on the final day.

Glamorgan went in at stumps on 36 for 1 after 11 overs, with opener James Kettleborough on 16 and nightwatchman Dean Cosker still there with a single. They will require a further 372 to record their first win of the campaign.

Kent batted the majority of day three in order to post their second 300-plus score of the match and leave the visitors 11 remaining overs on Tuesday, coupled with a minimum 96 on the final day, to pursue their first victory of the season at an asking rate of 3.7 per over.

Resuming on 1 for 0, Kent suffered the early loss of first-innings century-maker Daniel Bell-Drummond for just 1, lbw to a Michael Hogan offcutter. The hosts laid solid foundations thereafter through opening bat Joe Denly and nightwatchman James Tredwell, who both hit half-centuries in a second-wicket stand of 114.

Denly's 112-ball stay ended for 66 when he shouldered arms only to have his stumps rearranged by Graham Wagg, leaving Tredwell to reach a 124-ball 50 with six fours. It was the England left-hander's first championship fifty for Kent since the clash with Leicestershire here in May 2012.

Tredwell vigil ended when he drove the first ball of a new spell by Hogan into the hands of short extra cover, a dismissal the sparked the loss of two more wickets before Sam Northeast was bowled for a duck playing across the line of a Hogan yorker, then Brendan Nash fell for 45, sking an attempted pull to the keeper to leave the hosts on 228 for 5 at the interval.

Soon after the resumption Darren Stevens edged a leg glance into the gloves of Mark Wallace, but Kent pressed on through youngsters Sam Billings and Fabian Cowdrey, the latter reaching his maiden Championship half-century from 63 balls with seven fours and a six.

Cowdrey departed after holing out to Kettleborough at cow corner, then Billings ran down the track to Cosker only to clip a firm catch to midwicket and depart for 37. Matt Coles and Calum Haggett perished in the quest for quick runs, leaving Kent all out by 5.34pm and Glamorgan's Aussie paceman Hogan with 4 for 65 and match figures of 9 for 136.

Commenting on his first championship 50 for Kent, Fabian Cowdrey said: "It was a nice feeling for me to contribute just when we needed a quick-scoring partnership to move the game forward. We managed to accelerate at just the right time and get our heads above water. I was disappointed to get out when and how I did though, caught on the ropes, I should have followed through with it and hit it out of the field and into the Cricket Academy.

"We've set them over 400 and that'll be a damned good chase in anyone's books if they get it. We need to do our things right. Getting Jacques Rudolph out tonight was a massive boost for us and a big blow to them. We just need nine more great balls like that one."

Rudolph, the Glamorgan skipper, while disappointed after losing his off stump, still believes his side are in with a chance of victory. "It's still a very good wicket and I think this game has shown that if you can get past the new ball it's possible to canter along at 120 in a session. That mean's it's an achievable target if we can just get off to a good start."