Northeast and Jones complete the job
Kent maintained their hopes of reaching the knock-out stages of the Friends Life t20 with a deserved five-wicket win over Glamorgan at Canterbury.
Chasing 139 for their sixth win in 12 games, the Spitfires triumphed with four balls to spare courtesy of an unbroken sixth-wicket stand worth 57 between man-of-the-match Sam Northeast and Geraint Jones, who finished unbeaten with 39 and 30 respectively.
Robert Croft’s three wickets, allied to Alviro Petersen’s 33 earlier on, went to waste for Glamorgan.
Kent’s response got off to an unfortunate start when Joe Denly, facing Simon Jones, lost his footing and trod on leg stump to dislodge a bail.
On 18, fellow opener Rob Key bottom-edged a reverse-sweep off Croft on to pad and boot, and the ball bounced up to allow wicketkeeper Mark Wallace to claim a sharp catch.
Darren Stevens was beaten in the flight by Croft to make it 66 for three and Azhar Mahmood, Kent’s leading t20 scorer with almost 300 runs, reached 32 before falling leg before aiming an audacious paddle against Jim Allenby.
In the next over Alex Blake heaved across the line to go leg before without scoring to give Croft excellent final figures of 3-27 from four overs.
With the 100 up after 16 overs, Geraint Jones pulled the biggest six of the day over midwicket off James Harris and, with 28 needed from the final three overs, plundered another six and two fours as 19 came off the next over from Allenby to bring victory within reach.
Having elected to bat first, Glamorgan were given a rousing start through their robust opener Mark Cosgrove.
The burly left-hander off-drove Azhar for six in a cameo 19 off 16 deliveries that ended when he had his leg stump pegged back as he aimed a slow-sweep at an Azhar slower ball.
Petersen appeared to be getting into full stride when pulling consecutive fours off Adam Ball, but the teenage left-arm seamer had his revenge by clinging on to a low return catch.
Allenby added 14 before he edged behind when aiming a steer to third man against off-spinner James Tredwell, then Chris Cook toe-ended a pull off Wahab Riaz to Tredwell at midwicket.
Gareth Rees was beaten by Stevens’ throw from deep midwicket as he chased a second run and two balls later Graham Wagg, who made 24 despite batting with a runner after injuring his foot, holed out to long-on.
Riaz conceded 19 runs, including five wides and a no-ball, in his final over, the penultimate over of the innings.