Kent's allrounders seal victory
Kent 135 for 3 beat Nottinghamshire 93 for 9 by 42 runs
Eye catching allround performances by Azhar Mahmood and Darren Stevens eased Kent to a 42-run victory over Nottinghamshire in a Clydesdale Bank 40 game reduced to 16 overs a side. Heavy rain delayed the start for three-and-a-half hours, but it was Kent who appeared sharper with bat and ball when play finally got under way in front of a small Canterbury crowd at 5.15pm.
Batting first having lost the toss, Kent posted 45 through openers Rob Key and Joe Denly, who each scored 22 before running themselves out. At the start of the 10th over Martin van Jaarsveld then missed an attempted sweep against Samit Patel to have leg stump pegged back and, at 63 for 3, Kent appeared unlikely to post a competitive score.
Kent's fourth-wicket partners had other ideas, however, as they tucked into the Nottinghamshire attack to add 72 from 35 balls to set the Outlaws a testing asking rate of 8.5 an over for victory. They took 22 from one over from Paul Franks as Stevens dashed to 49 from 35 balls - including three fours and as many sixes, one of which landed in the new St Lawrence lime tree.
Mahmood chipped in with 29 off 15 deliveries and cleared the ropes twice as Franks conceded 33 off his three wicketless overs. Seemingly shell-shocked at the punishment their bowlers had received, Nottinghamshire got off to a poor start to their run chase and, once behind the asking rate, never really recovered their composure.
The visitors lost Ali Brown in the second over, the right-hander missed an expansive drive to have off stump plucked out by his former Surrey team-mate Mahmood. To the next delivery Matthew Wood sliced a cover drive straight into the hands of Matt Coles at point and though Samit Patel survived the hat-trick ball he soon holed out in the deep off Simon Cook.
Top-scorer Alex Hales missed a slog sweep against James Tredwell to go for 21 from 17 balls and Cook struck again by having Chris Read superbly caught late cutting by Geraint Jones when stood up to the stumps. With the light fading faster than Nottinghamshire's victory hopes, Coles put the result beyond doubt by taking three wickets for three runs in the space of five balls.
Franks was yorked, Graeme White heaved across the line to lose off stump then Steven Mullaney waltzed across his stumps to be pinned leg before wicket as Nottinghamshire slid to only their second defeat in nine starts. Coles finished with 3 for 7, while Cook and Mahmood bagged two wickets apiece to secure Kent's fourth win of the group stages.