Last wicket
11th Apr 2019 - 11:00AM Edgbaston, Birmingham
Specsavers County Championship Division One 2019
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Warwickshire
Warwickshire
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Kent
Kent
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Brian Halford
11th April 2019

Championship Report: Warwickshire v Kent – 11-14 April 2019

The Bears host Kent in their opening County Championship Division One fixture.

Day Four: Kent won by eight wickets

Kent were kept waiting but ultimately completed a commanding eight-wicket win over Warwickshire deep in the final session of their Specsavers County Championship Division One clash at Edgbaston.

The home side, having followed on 158 behind, delivered some stern last-day resistance through an eighth-wicket stand of 144 in 45 overs between Tim Ambrose (107, 195 balls, 16 fours) and Henry Brookes (a career-best 84, 155 balls, 14 fours).

But after they were separated, just before tea, the last three wickets fell in 22 balls to leave Kent a victory target of 123 in 31 overs. Harry Podmore finished with five for 62 to harvest match-figures of eight for 123, a highly impressive return on a very good batting pitch.

Kent eased to 124 for two to complete their first victory in Division One of the championship since 2010. Their strong performance was the perfect response to the disappointment of defeat to Somerset in their opening game at Taunton.

For Warwickshire, it was a chastening start to the season. With a squad in transition, and further hit by injuries which ruled out Olly Stone, Chris Woakes, Ian Bell, Liam Norwell and Aaron Thomason, they faced an immediate examination of their squad depth and struggled to cope.

The home side resumed on the final morning on 79 for four, still needing another 79 to avoid an innings defeat, and soon lost Sam Hain (38, 73 balls, five fours) who edged a superb ball from Podmore to wicketkeeper Ollie Robinson.

After Tom Milnes fell lbw to Darren Stevens and Podmore produced another fine delivery to pin Craig Miles in front, Warwickshire were seven down, still 37 behind and Kent were scenting victory by an innings. But Ambrose and Brookes batted with composure and patience against an attack which began to look understandably tired.

Brookes passed his previous career-best of 70 before Ambrose reached his eighteenth first-class century, from 191 balls with his 15th four. The pair were just taking their side within touching distance of safety when, four overs before tea, Kent finally made the vital breakthrough. Milnes trapped Ambrose lbw with an in-ducker that kept a little low after which Podmore immediately followed up by removing Jeetan Patel lbw and Milnes won another lbw decision, against Brookes.

Left with a victory target of 123 in 30 overs, Kent lost Sean Dickson, lbw to Brookes, in the second over, but first-innings century maker Zak Crawley (45, 40 balls) and Matt Renshaw (48 not out, 50 balls) added 80 in 67 balls to make light work of the small target.

Day Three

Kent took total control of the battle of the newly-promoted sides at Edgbaston where Warwickshire face a massive last-day rearguard action to avoid defeat in their Specsavers County Championship Division One match.

After following on 158 behind, the home side closed the third day on 79 for four in their second innings – still 79 behind.

Replying to Kent’s 504 for nine, Warwickshire had been advancing solidly towards the follow on figure of 355 when they were 242 for four early in the afternoon, but were then undone by a clatter of five wickets for 32 runs in 11 overs and folded to 346 all out.

Harry Podmore’s burst of three wickets in 11 balls was the catalyst for the collapse. Podmore finished with three for 61 while Matt Milnes took three for 50 and Darren Stevens three for 56, an excellent effort by the seamers on a pitch still very good for batting.

Podmore and Stevens then swiftly removed Warwickshire’s openers second time round and only some heroic final-day resistance from the Bears can deny Kent their first Championship Division One win since 2010.

After Warwickshire resumed on the third day on 136 for three, Kent were held up by  Dominic Sibley’s fifth century in successive first-class matches. Sibley concentrated hard for 132 (315 balls, 15 fours) but none of his team-mates reached 50 in very favourable batting conditions.

Sibley added 70 with Adam Hose (31, 93 balls) and 87 with Tim Ambrose (44, 77 balls) but Ambrose’s departure, lbw to Stevens, just after lunch, heralded the clatter.

Podmore swiftly added the scalps of Tom Milnes, caught at second slip and then Craig Miles and Sibley lbw. When Henry Brookes edged Mitchell Claydon to second slip it was 273 for nine and last pair Jeetan Patel and Ryan Sidebottom needed to find 82 to avoid that follow on.

They had a real go at it, adding 73 before, just nine runs short of sentencing the match to a draw, Patel (40, 45 balls, four fours, two sixes) skied Stevens to mid-off in the last over before tea.

Kent took just two balls to damage Warwickshire’s second innings when Podmore trapped Will Rhodes lbw. The visitors’ soaring confidence was then illustrated by two brilliant catches in the cordon, by Zak Crawley to remove Sibley off Stevens and by Adam Riley when Liam Banks drove at Podmore.

That cordon collected again when Matt Renshaw pouched Hose off Claydon to leave the Bears staring well and truly down the barrel. Kent would be devastated, from this position, not to end the nine-year gap since their last top-flight win – a four-wicket victory at Yorkshire at Headingley in September 2010 achieved under coach Paul Farbrace, now sport director at Edgbaston.

Day Two

Kent continue to prosper at Edgbaston as Ollie Robinson became their second home-grown youngster in successive days to score a century in their Specsavers County Championship Division One match against Warwickshire.

After Bromley-born 21-year-old Zak Crawley scored a fluent 108 on the first day, Ollie Robinson, a 20-year-old son of Sidcup, followed up on the second with his maiden first-class ton.

In only his eighth first-class innings, Robinson’s composed 143 (228 balls, 22 fours) eclipsed the 95 runs he had collected in the previous seven and lifted his side to an imposing 504 for nine declared.

It was a very impressive response from Kent to the disappointment of defeat plucked from the jaws of victory in their opening game at Somerset last week. They then made strong progress towards turning that hefty total into a victory when, on an excellent batting track, they reduced  Warwickshire to 84 for three.

The home side closed the second day on 136 for three, still 229 short of the follow on figure, and have plenty of batting to do if they are to avoid defeat in their first game back in the top division.

After Kent resumed on the second day on 367 for five, they lost Darren Stevens (23, 41 balls). lbw offering no shot to Henry Brookes, and Harry Podmore lbw to Ryan Sidebottom, in the morning.

But Robinson found a resolute partner in Matt Milnes and the eighth-wicket pair added 84 in 26 overs before the latter (28, 81 balls, five fours) perished in bizarre fashion. Sweeping at Jeetan Patel, he survived an lbw appeal only to be adjudged out caught after the ball looped off the back of the bat to slip.

When Robinson finally fell, stumped off Patel, Kent declared. They left the home side 21 overs to bat before tea and struck twice in that time as Will Rhodes bottom-edged a wide long hop from Darren Stevens to the wicketkeeper and Liam Banks edged Milnes’s first ball to third slip.

Dominic Sibley and Sam Hain added 48 in 16 overs before the latter edged Milnes behind. Without Ian Bell, who is ruled out until June by a foot injury, Warwickshire were left leaning heavily on Sibley. Having been guilty of a couple of expensive dropped catches, the vice-captain owed his team some runs and he dug in to reach the close on 60 from 158 balls while Adam Hose reined in his usual aggression for an unbeaten 29 from 65 balls.

Day One

Zak Crawley led the way with a polished century as Kent took advantage of a good batting pitch more redolent of August than April on the opening day against Warwickshire at Edgbaston.

In the clash of the two newly-promoted Specsavers County Championship Division One sides, Kent chose to bat on a pale, true surface and closed the first day on 367 for five.

Twenty-one-year-old Crawley was the only member of the top four to take full advantage as he struck his second first-class century – 108  from 172 balls with 18 fours. But there were enough smaller contributions to make an injury-depleted Warwickshire attack toil hard for success and captain Heino Kuhn (72, 97 balls, 12 fours) and Ollie Robinson (59 not out, 104 balls, nine fours) cemented their team’s advantage after tea with a fifth-wicket stand of  119.

With front-line bowlers Chris Woakes, Olly Stone and Liam Norwell on the injured-list, the Bears have started the season short of seamers and selected Tom Milnes, who is uncontracted but back on trial at the club he left in 2015. The attack persevered on a pitch giving them little margin for error but Kent’s batsmen also applied themselves well and have the makings of a total from which to impose some serious scoreboard when Warwickshire go in.

Kent had no hesitation in choosing to bat first and seizing an opportunity for their batsmen to assert themselves and build some confidence after the collapse with cost their side victory in their opening game at Somerset last week. They started strongly as Crawley added 82 in 22.2 overs with Sean Dickson (31, 73 balls, four fours) and 87 in 27.1 overs with Matt Renshaw (87 balls, six fours). Dickson was the only man to fall in the morning session when he steered Ryan Sidebottom to Liam Banks in the gully.

From the strong platform of 169 for one, Kent hit an afternoon wobble when three wickets fell in 53 balls. Renshaw became Craig Miles’ first victim for Warwickshire when he edged the former Gloucestershire man to Tim Ambrose. The wicketkeeper soon swooped twice more, pouching Daniel Bell-Drummond from a outswinger from Henry Brookes and Crawley who inside-edged skipper Jeetan Patel.

At 204 for four, the day was in the balance but Kuhn and Robinson batted positively and with assurance. Kuhn fell lbw to Miles with the second new ball but 20-year-old Robinson recorded his maiden first-class half-century (81 balls, eight fours) and has power to add on the second morning.

Brian Halford
10th April 2019

Championship Preview: Warwickshire v Kent – 11-14 April 19

Jeetan Patel will lead a much-changed Warwickshire team into a new Specsavers County Championship season tomorrow and is loving the sense of excitement around the dressing-room.

The Bears launch their Division One campaign just as they signed off from Division Two last autumn, against Kent at Edgbaston. Back then, with both sides’ promotion already sealed, they beat Kent by an innings and 34 runs to secure the title and put a joyous full-stop to an excellent red-ball campaign.

Seven months on, the team that faces Kent tomorrow will be very different, missing five big players from that game – the departed Jonathan Trott, Keith Barker and Chris Wright and the injured Olly Stone and Ian Bell.

"For us to win the first game would be huge but right now it’s just about that first hour and getting into the game and taking some punches and hopefully throwing some back."

Jeetan Patel

But Patel is totally relaxed about the new guard on duty this week.

“It will be a very different team to the one we finished with last year but that’s just the cycle of cricket,” he said.

“Things keep moving and changing – that’s the way sport is and that’s why it’s exciting. Kent have a different side as well.

“For us to win the first game would be huge but right now it’s just about that first hour and getting into the game and taking some punches and hopefully throwing some back.

“We have got quite a young group and that’s exciting but we are not looking too far ahead. Young pups only really need to chase the ball that’s in front of them. The only thing I am looking at it this week.

“The guys did really well in the championship last year. Now what this group needs is to win some games of cricket and get some confidence and excitement building and go from there.

“The guys are keen. So keen. They are so excited about the new season and that’s fantastic to see. There will be some apprehension among them around selection, around being in the first team and, in some cases, around putting that Bear on for the first time, and that’s all good. Above all, it’s fun and I want them to relax and enjoy it.

“There will be times in the season ahead and perhaps in this first game when we are up against it, and we will make mistakes, and the question will be can we learn from them? That will be the biggest thing.”

The Bears enter the season with an immediate examination of their squad depth. Bell and Stone will be out until June at least while also ruled out of the first match are Chris Woakes, still on his way back from the knee injury which truncated his England input during the winter, and new signing Liam Norwell, whose debut is delayed by a pec strain.

Fast bowler Craig Miles, having bowled with good pace and rhythm for match figures of 15-5-28-3 in the warm-up against Leeds/Bradford MCCU, is in line for his debut but Aaron Thomason, who impressed with runs and wickets in that match, is a doubt after suffering a torn pec diving in the field during the game.

Warwickshire Squad

  • Jeetan Patel (Captain)
  • Tim Ambrose (Wicket-Keeper)
  • Liam Banks
  • Henry Brookes
  • Sam Hain
  • Olly Hannon-Dalby
  • Adam Hose
  • Matt Lamb
  • Craig Miles
  • Tom Milnes
  • Will Rhodes
  • Dom Sibley
  • Ryan Sidebottom

 

Edgbaston Foundation Community Fun Day

A day of fun for the whole family! Edgbaston Foundation’s Community Fun Day will this year take place for the Royal London One-Day Cup match against Lancashire on Saturday 4 May, with Adults only £2 and Under-16s FREE.

The day will offer free family entertainment, including inflatables and face painting, and cricket with Warwickshire in 50-over action starting at 11am.

Book Tickets
10th April 2019

Spectator Guide: Warwickshire v Kent

Are you visiting Edgbaston this week for the Specsavers County Championship match against Kent? Take a moment to read our Spectator Guide to ensure your visit is safe, enjoyable and comfortable.

The four-day match begins on Thursday 11 April, with play starting at 11am. Tickets for this match will be available to buy on the gate, while under-16s are free.

Key Timings

Gates open: 10am
Play starts: 11am
Lunch interval: 1pm to 1.40pm
Tea interval: 3.40pm to 4pm (or when 32 overs remain in the day)
Scheduled close: 6pm

Tickets are available on the gate; Adults £15, Under-16s free
Car Parking is available on the day; £7.50 per car (£5 for Members)

Parking

On-site parking will be available to buy on each day during this week’s match. Parking will be available at the Main Car Park, accessible via the entrance off Edgbaston Road. Please use our post code B5 7QU to find us.

While the Club will always try to accommodate all vehicles visiting the ground, admittance will be on a first come, first served basis. Please plan your journey in advance and arrive early to guarantee your on-site match day parking.

Public car parking may also be available on a pay and display basis in Cannon Hill Park and/or the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Centre, but note that these car parks are not operated by the Club.

Buses

From Broad Street and Five-Ways Island
Service 1 stops outside the ground on Edgbaston Road.

From Bullring (Debenhams bus stops) & Moor Street Station)
Services 45 & 47 provide a frequency of up to every 5 minutes stop on Priory Road, Pershore Road which is only a few seconds away from the ground.

From Bullring (Debenhams bus stops)
Services X61, 63 & X64 stop on Priory Road, Bristol Rd which is a couple of minutes walk from the ground.

From Bullring (Selfridges Entrance) & Digbeth Coach Station
Service 35 takes you just a few minutes walk away from the ground on Willow Road, Edgbaston Road

Under 16s Information

All under 16s must be accompanied by an adult – otherwise they will not be granted entry. All under 16s go completely free but they will need a ticket – please collect one of these from a steward or the Club Shop.

Free Stadium Wi-Fi

Working with the ECB and The Cloud, Edgbaston has installed a state-of-the-art free Wi-Fi available for all spectators. To connect search for Wi-Fi networks and select “_The Cloud” upon connection login using your existing Cloud account or complete a once only registration form.

Merchandise

Please visit the Edgbaston shop, Store ’94, where you will be able to find a range of fantastic merchandise including replica kit, caps, t-shirts and jerseys.

New for 2019 – the shop will be stocking a limited edition retro range from the treble winning 1994 season and a new signature collection.

Queries

Please email tickets@edgbaston.com if you have any questions about a match day at Edgbaston. Alternatively, please call our team on  0121 369 1994 (option 2), lines are open Monday to Friday, 10am to 5pm.

Live scorecard

The match live scorecard will appear here once the match is in play.

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