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REPORT & HIGHLIGHTS: Two wickets for Whittingham as Kent pass 300 at Tunbridge Wells


Kent reached 310 for 3 on the opening day of the Specsavers County Championship clash with Sussex today, at Royal Tunbridge Wells, as Stuart Whittingham claimed two wickets.

A sluggish, two-paced pitch coupled with a slow outfield at The Nevill Ground ensured an honest battle between bat and ball and, with great joy, the introduction of leg-spin before lunch as the visitors vied for a second breakthrough.

Ken twon the cat-and-mouse tussle of day one courtesy of a second-wicket stand worth 162 in 57.2 overs between Joe Denly (78) and Sean Dickson (81), who mustered 12 boundaries between them.

Batting first after winning the toss, Kent lost their makeshift opener Adam Ball to the tenth ball of the match. Standing in for Daniel Bell-Drummond, who is away on England Lions duty together with Sam Billings, Ball drove at his fourth ball of the day from Chris Jordan to edge to Ross Taylor at first slip and depart without scoring.

Denly and Dickson saw off the new ball pairing of Steve Magoffin and Jordan, then Whittingham’s first delivery of the game proved eventful, a beamer, it flew over Joe Denly’s head for six no balls leading to an official warning from umpire Nick Cook.

The hosts re-grouped either side of lunch through Denly and Dickson who set out their stall to bat time. Playing back, the South African-born player in two minds against a short delivery and only succeeded in spooning it to Will Beer positioned in the gully.

After batting over four hours Denly, aimed to pull a length ball from Whittingham, he skied a top-edge to Taylor at mid-wicket to make it 199 for 3. It proved to be the last success of the day for Sussex.

Northeast and Stevens dug in through to stumps, Northeast passing his 50 in 77 balls while Stevens posted his first-half century since mid-May from 75 deliveries and with six fours and six.

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