County Championship: Surrey beat defiant Leicestershire

Steven Davies
Steven Davies joined Surrey from Worcestershire prior to the 2010 season
LV= County Championship Division Two, The Kia Oval
Leicestershire 292 & 480: Eckersley 118, O'Brien 78, Ansari 6-152
Surrey 557 & 218-3: Davies 115no, Roy 67
Surrey beat Leicestershire by seven wickets
Leicestershire 5 pts, Surrey 8 pts
Match scorecard

Surrey raced to a dramatic first win of the season in the final session at The Oval after a praiseworthy batting effort by Leicestershire.

The visitors held out until after tea before finally being dismissed for 480 as spinner Zafar Ansari took 6-152.

Needing 216 to win, opener Steven Davies smashed a 57-ball century and was 115 not out when Surrey reached their target on 218-3 in the 22nd over.

Kevin Pietersen played no part in proceedings because of a calf problem.

Although the match will be remembered for his magnificent 355 not out on days two and three, he was only a spectator as Surrey tried to dismiss Leicestershire's lower order after undergoing a precautionary scan, having driven himself to hospital.

Kevin Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen watched the day's proceedings from the Surrey dressing room

Having resumed on 310-5, they got through to lunch for the loss of only Ben Raine (33) and Niall O'Brien (78).

Clint McKay was lbw to Ansari for 41 following the restart, but Rob Taylor and Jigar Naik stood firm until tea as they added 62.

Naik (30) finally fell to home skipper Gareth Batty and the innings came to an end four balls later when Taylor (42) was caught behind off Ansari, who sent down 51.1 overs during the innings.

Any hopes Leicestershire had of keeping Surrey's batsmen in check were soon dispelled as Davies and Jason Roy took 60 off the first five overs.

Roy hit three sixes and five fours in a 28-ball half century and their stand was worth 145 when he was caught off Taylor for 67.

Kumar Sangakkara and Gary Wilson both fell to Naik's off-spin, but Davies maintained his momentum and having collected four sixes and 10 fours, it was fitting that he should add another boundary to bring the game to an end.

Kevin Pietersen tweet

Surrey batsman Steven Davies told BBC London 94.9:

"I'm over the moon, it was an incredible win. Things were looking pretty tough from the start of play, right through to tea really.

"That was a flat wicket and it took a special knock from Kevin to get us ahead of the game.

"It was one of the best innings I've ever seen. The guy is class, it's a joy to watch him play.

"I'm really pleased he didn't just get a big hundred, he got 350. He's a fantastic player, the best I've seen."

Leicestershire head coach Andrew McDonald:

"There was a lot of fight from the players over the last couple of days and a lot of them batted for a good amount of time.

"Every batsman set out to occupy the crease and, in the end, we just fell short.

"But the players tried their backsides off and all I will say is that we have got to start winning the key moments in games."