Blake and Kuhn put Middlesex to the sword at Lords to make it five from five. 2nd August 2019
Middlesex vs Kent Spitfires
Vitality T20 Blast Thursday 1st August 2019
Peter Moore at Lords
Kent 204-4 (20) Middlesex 176-7 (20)
Kent won by 28 runs
A sparkling century stand between Alex Blake and Heino Kuhn proved the difference between the sides as Kent made it five wins out of five and boosted their chances of a quarter final slot in the competition.
At 90-4 it appeared an even contest until Blake and Kuhn smashed an unbroken partnership of 114 from just eight overs to set up victory.
Unbeaten Spitfires were put into bat and were quickly into their stride, with openers Daniel bell-Drummond and Zak Crawley putting on 44 in the opening five overs, with Crawley, punishing Toby Roland-Jones opening over by hitting the paceman for 16 off three deliveries. He calmly flicked Roland-Jones for six over the square leg boundary, next ball was despatched for four over long on and then straight drove Roland-Jones for six over his head before eventually falling to Tom Helm for 30 off 15 balls. Steve Finn- who recently signed a new two year contract- grabbed two wickets in four deliveries by having Ollie Robinson(7) caught in the deep and Bell-Drummond(25) caught at mid-off to leave Kent 71 for 3 in the ninth over. Mohammad Nabi(7) failed to repeat his heroic batting of Tuesday against Surrey- when he was bowled off stump by Nathan Sowter. A match winning unbroken partnership of 114 of only 48 balls between Heino Kuhn and Alex Blake propelled Kent to a final total of 204 for 4 in their 20 overs. Blake, hit Finn for four six’s in five deliveries as Middlesex’s bowling attack was hit all around the ground. Kuhn’s knock of 54 came of 31 deliveries whilst Blake smashed 66 off 29 balls including five six’s and four boundaries as the Middlesex attack wilted under pressure. Roland-Jones went for 47 in just three overs with Helm conceding 45 in four overs and Finn 40. Kent’s massive total was also boosted by Middlesex sending down a total of eleven wides.
Middlesex’s hopes of chasing down Kent’s total were dealt a huge blow when they lost two wickets in three balls with Harius Viljoen bowling Malan(5) and Eskinazi(4) caught behind. The South African Viljoen then bagged his third wicket of the night when he had his fellow countryman AB de Villiers(10) caught at mid-off with the hosts chances of pulling of victory extremely slim. The winning England World Cup Captain Eoin Morgan received a standing ovation from the whole ground as he made his way to the middle with Middlesex requiring almost 11 runs an over for victory. John Simpson joined Morgan at the crease with the pair adding 61 for the fifth wicket until Morgan(28) holed out at long-off. Simpson’s cameo innings of 37 off 27 deliveries was ended when Fred Klaassen clung on to a fine catch at long-on to leave Middlesex still requiring 73 off 30 balls. Despite some lusty blows from the willow of Roland-Jones bat- 31 off 19 balls- Kent ran out worthy winners by 28 runs to maintain their unbeaten start to their Vitality Blast campaign.