Coles demolishes Northants
Matt Coles took six wickets as Kent cruised to an innings-and-120-run victory over Northamptonshire inside three days of their LV= County Championship match at Wantage Road.
The 21-year-old seamer, who struck a maiden century against Yorkshire last week, claimed career-best figures of 6-51 as Northants capitulated to 116 all out before lunch in a match the visitors dominated from the start.
Only three batsmen made double figures, captain David Sales top-scoring with 42 in what was an abject batting display.
Northants began the day on 50 for four, 186 runs behind, with Sales resuming on 31 and Ireland wicketkeeper Niall O’Brien on five.
Sales survived an early scare when he wildly missed a drive off Coles and he was relieved to see the ball miss the outside edge of his bat.
But he was to perish on 42 when his off-stump was sent tumbling by the same bowler in the ninth over of the day.
James Middlebrook was next to the crease but he could only make nine off 39 balls before he departed, edging former Durham seamer Mark Davies to Geraint Jones.
A second consecutive heavy defeat for Northants now looked inevitable and the sorry procession continued when Sri Lankan Chaminda Vaas was trapped lbw to give England spinner James Tredwell his first wicket of the match.
At one point, the hosts went 27 overs without hitting a boundary before O’Brien clipped one through third man off Coles in the 48th over.
Coles then dismissed David Willey, who was superbly caught by Jones diving low to his right, before completing the third five-wicket haul of his first-class career when the former England wicketkeeper easily held on to remove Brooks for a six-ball duck.
With nine wickets down, Kent chose to take the extra half-hour that was available to them before lunch.
And they soon wrapped up a comprehensive victory when Jones, with his fifth catch of the innings, held on to dismiss Lee Daggett, who made 15, off Coles.
This left O’Brien unbeaten on a patient 25 off 115 balls as his side picked up just two points, with the dominant Kent coming away with 23.