County Championship: Kent end Warwickshire's unbeaten record

Warwickshire batsman Ian Bell
Ian Bell has scored 630 Championship runs this summer at an average of 78.75
Specsavers County Championship Division Two, Nevill Ground, Tunbridge Wells (day four):
Kent 197 & 446-8 dec: Dickson 133, Denly 119, Crawley 93; Barker 4-64
Warwickshire 125 & 445: Bell 172, Sibley 104, Hose 65; Podmore 4-84
Kent (19 pts) beat Warwickshire (3 pts) by 73 runs

Warwickshire made a gallant attempt to set a new Championship run-chase record before losing to Kent by 73 runs.

Chasing 519 to win at Tunbridge Wells, Ian Bell and Dom Sibley extended their second-wicket partnership to 260.

Sibley was caught at slip before lunch for 104 and Ivan Thomas claimed the crucial scalp of Bell after the break, trapping him lbw for 172.

Adam Hose continued the chase with 65, but Joe Denly took three wickets in six balls as they were all out for 445.

Warwickshire remain top of Division Two despite losing their unbeaten record, while second-placed Kent's fourth win in six games leaves them just eight points behind.

Harry Podmore was Kent's most successful bowler with 4-84, and he it was who ended the Bell-Sibley stand and then had Jonathan Trott caught behind for a duck.

While Bell was still there, the prospect of beating the 502 scored by Middlesex to beat Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge in 1925 remained.

Thomas, though, ended the former Bears captain's six-hour innings, which featured 24 fours, and paceman Matt Henry then nipped out Tim mbrose and captain Jeetan Patel to take his Championship wickets tally to 49 this season.

Hose reached 50 off 92 balls as he and Chris Wright added 35, but Denly had them both lbw in the same over before ending the match when Oliver Hannon-Dalby was caught at cover at the start of his next over.

Kent captain Joe Denly:

"It was certainly a hard-fought win coming off the back of a tough schedule. We've played some unbelievable cricket so far. The self-belief in our squad is amazing and that showed again.

"We turned up not really knowing how we really stood in this game to be honest. They were one down with Ian Bell at the crease and with a very good batting line-up to follow him on a pretty flat deck. It took a lot of belief and commitment from out guys to run in all day.

"The key word is character, shown throughout our entire bowling unit here. There were some tough chances taken and a couple dropped, but the slip cordon and Adam Rouse behind the stumps have all been superb this year."

Warwickshire head coach Jim Troughton told BBC WM 95.6:

"We knew hat we'd need two perfect sessions to put ourselves in a really good position to chase this total down. And, in the first hour and a half, with the new ball having been taken, we were in a good position.

"But a lot of credit goes to Kent for sticking with it. You have to credit Matt Henry and Harry Podmore. Henry bowled eight and 10-over spells in hot conditions and his pace never seemed to wane.

"In the end that 70-run deficit in the first innings ended up being the winning margin at the end. But you've got to take all the good stuff out of games like this. We're still top. Hopefully we'll go up to Durham and put things right."

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