County Championship: Kent's Mitch Claydon takes five Worcestershire wickets

Worcestershire and England Lions batsman Joe Clarke
Worcestershire's England Lions batsman Joe Clarke took his season's haul to 796 first-class runs
Specsavers County Championship Division Two, Canterbury, day one
Worcestershire 211: Clarke 69, Fell 34; Claydon 5-42
Kent 55-0: Bell-Drummond 30*, Dickson 19*
Kent 3 pts, Worcestershire 1 pt

Kent paceman Mitch Claydon took 5-42 to help his team dominate on day one of their meeting with County Championship promotion rivals Worcestershire.

The visitors, who began the game second in Division Two, just six points ahead of fifth-placed Kent, were bowled out for 211, despite Joe Clarke's 69.

Claydon did most of the damage in the post-lunch session, four of his victims coming in the space of 20 balls.

Openers Daniel Bell-Drummond and Sean Dickson then helped Kent close on 55-0.

In the 20 overs possible, Bell-Drummond reached stumps safely on 30, while Dickson is still there on 19.

The opening day of the 165th Canterbury Cricket Week enjoyed better weather than the scheduled four-day match between Worcestershire and Kent in the opening Championship match of this season, which was abandoned without a ball being bowled.

But, with the game having started an hour late at noon, as Kent had been in One-Day Cup action at Hove the night before, a slow over rate meant a late finish at 19:49 BST.

George Rhodes, playing in only his second Championship match, lasted more than two and a half hours for his 16, having opened the Worcestershire batting as deputy for Brett D'Oliveira, who was absent after dislocating his finger.

Billings close to Kent record

Sam Billings had earlier starred behind the stumps, taking seven catches, just one behind Kent's county record of eight, set by Steve Marsh against Middlesex at Lord's in 1991.

Billings is only the second Kent wicketkeeper to take seven catches in an innings - a surprising statistic, given that the county has in the past produced some legendary Test keepers, Alan Knott, Godfrey Evans, Les Ames, Hopper Levett and, more recently, 2005 Ashes hero Geraint Jones.

'This has been coming' - Claydon

Kent paceman Mitch Claydon told BBC Radio Kent:

"I felt that performance has been coming for a while. I've put in some good spells over the past couple of months without the wickets I felt I've deserved. It strange how it works some days.

"This was the pitch we played Glamorgan on earlier in the season. We found then that, if we bent our backs, we could get something out of it.

"Finishing the day just before 8pm seems a bit crazy, but we needed that lie in after a big one-day game at Hove on Tuesday night."

Worcestershire boss Steve Rhodes told BBC Hereford & Worcester:

"We did think about bowling first when we arrived. We knew it was a little damp but, when it was mowed, they took all the grass off it.

"We then thought we might bat first even if it meant getting through a tough patch at the start.

"Kent bowled well but we lacked a little intensity with our batting and got ourselves in a bit of a hole. It was a disappointing day."

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