Cricket: Hepworth tailors to team's needs: Leicestershire look up

Click to follow
The Independent Online
Leicestershire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .204 and 281-5 dec

Kent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .157 and 189

Leicestershire win by 139 runs

AFTER their third win in four matches, Leicestershire find themselves in second place in the Championship table and have a decent enough side for this to be something other than a temporary blip. Their next task, however, given that the team is stuffed with Yorkshiremen, will be to keep Raymond Illingworth from raiding the larder.

One of the Yorkshire exiles, Peter Hepworth, had a not insignificant role in yesterday's victory over a Kent team already looking towards the wooden spoon. Hepworth's part-time off-spin made the decisive breach after tea when Kent, from 47 for 4, began to offer serious resistance.

Kent never had the platform to have a dip at making 329 in 80 overs, thanks largely to a bowler who can regard himself immune to any England raid, even though Illingworth was his captain here in 1978. Gordon Parsons's bowling, like his fuse, is sometimes far too short, but on this occasion the seamer moved the ball around from an intelligent length to take three of the early wickets.

When Carl Hooper allowed Parsons to nip through his vague waft, Kent decided that a draw would be the height of their ambition and there then followed a two-hour partnership of 81 between David Fulton and Matthew Fleming.

Fulton's batting is the sort that fills bars rather than empties them and while the sudden roars from the members' lounge sat incongrously alongside another Fulton forward prod, the noise had more to do with what Leicester City were doing at Wembley.

Immediately after tea, however, Hepworth's fourth ball had Felton caught behind off a leg-side flick and he then had Fleming caught at short leg. Leicestershire's front-line off-spinner, Adrian Pierson, then picked up two wickets in two balls, and Hepworth and Parsons snaffled the final two wickets with 14 overs to spare.