Surrey 220-5 v Kent: Ramprakash effort unlikely to save Surrey from drop

Having secured his place in cricket history last month with his hundredth first-class hundred, Mark Ramprakash may yet finish this season a disappointed man. Surrey are in deep relegation trouble and despite a masterful century from him yesterday at Canterbury they look unlikely to secure the win they desperately need. Almost unrelenting rain on the first two days ensured there was little prospect of that.

Nonetheless, Ramprakash's innings at the St Lawrence Ground was one to savour. While the other Surrey batsmen scrapped and fumbled, the 39-year-old was immediately at home, driving and pulling a whole-hearted Kent attack almost at will to bring up his 50th Surrey century in 143 balls.

The weather had dictated affairs before Ramprakash took centre stage. Just 20 minutes of play had been possible in the morning before a bank of black cloud swept across the ground, bringing with it first drizzle – which drove the players from the field – and then a more substantial downpour. Happily for Kent, there had been time for Robbie Joseph to take the wicket of Scott Newman (0) with his fifth delivery of the day after the Surrey batsman shouldered arms to one that came back off the seam.

Play resumed at 1.30pm but the two-and-a-half hour break appeared to have upset the Kent attack's concentration. In his first over, Joseph was cut for four by Ramprakash and then conceded three more by veering down the leg side before Amjad Khan, bowling from the Nackington Road End, was punished when the same batsman flicked him off his legs for four.

Where Ramprakash was quickly fluent, Murtagh was consistently hesitant. He took 34 balls to get off the mark and when he did it was with an edge that dropped short of Darren Stevens at second slip. Joseph should have removed Ramprakash, then on 31, when he edged to first slip: James Tredwell, however, failed to hold the ball. It was to prove a crucial error.

Murtagh, who contributed just nine runs out of a partnership of 62, was out soon after when he was caught by Geraint Jones off the bowling of Yasir Arafat. Ramprakash, unruffled, sped past fifty. There were some remarkable strokes but the most memorable came when Arafat veered a few inches down leg and was nonchalantly flick-pulled for six over the admittedly rather short boundary in front of the Colin Blythe memorial. Jonathan Batty, by contrast, stuck around for 51 balls but scored just 13 before he was caught in the deep by Stevens after top-edging a ball from Khan.

Ramprakash just kept powering relentlessly on towards his century, which arrived via an uncharacteristic thin inside edge off Joseph. He was finally removed by Arafat for 127, caught, 98 runs after his costly blunder, by Tredwell at first slip. The same combination quickly accounted for James Benning (2), leaving Surrey on 220 for 5 at the close.

Meanwhile, Pakistan's Shoaib Akhtar is expected join Surrey today after sorting out his visa formalities and will replace the Australian Matthew Nicholson.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style

Company reveals $542m investment in start-up building 'a rocket ship for the mind"

Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album