Cricket: Igglesden's influence

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Kent 502-4 dec

Leicestershire 181 and 183

Kent win by an innings and 138 runs

IT MUST have been some banana skin, Leicestershire slipping up in dramatic fashion and never coming within shouting distance of making Kent bat again, as they lost their last five wickets for four runs in eight balls yesterday. Indeed, lunch became a celebratory affair here for Alan Igglesden, once he had wrapped up matters by taking 5 for 41.

Kent's seventh win of the season, meanwhile, was worth a maximum 24 points and saw them leapfrog over Leicestershire, who began this match running second in the Championship.

Nigel Briers, the Leicestershire captain, had been on a hiding ever since he had asked Kent to bat and then watched them make 500. Worse still, Martin McCague then wreaked havoc with a seven-wicket return that had Leicestershire following on 321 in arrears. Now it was the turn of the other half of Kent's opening attack to complete the victory.

McCague, though, still had a few parting words before signing off. The Irish-born Australian, for one thing, let it be known that he would be quite interested in an approach from England selectors, and he backed up his claims for future consideration by adding a couple of further victims to a fast- growing list.

Tim Boon, on 72, fell - livid with himself - gloving a ball to the waiting Steve Marsh. McCague promptly scored a direct hit on Robert Gofton's helmet, and the nightwatchman was spared further misery when Carl Hooper made a superb diving catch to his right at first slip.

Over to Igglesden who, having removed Briers the previous evening, had Phil Robinson edging one to McCague at third slip. Leicestershire were then 171 for 5 and, eight runs later, Laurie Potter fell leg before attempting to sweep the slow left arm of Richard Davis. That dismissal came off the last ball of the 70th over - complete annihilation was just around the corner.

With the first, third and fifth balls of the 71st, Igglesden sent back Martyn Gidley, Winston Benjamin and Gordon Parsons. As for Davis, he will be on an unusual hat-trick next time out after claiming the final wicket, when Paul Nixon holed out off the first delivery sent down in the 72nd over.

More county reports, scoreboard, page 29