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Bohannon stars as century stand boosts Lancs at Canterbury

Bohannon stars as century stand boosts Lancs at Canterbury

An excellent century partnership between Josh Bohannon and Dane Vilas helped Lancashire overcome a difficult start on the opening day of this first LV= County Championship encounter with Kent in six years at Canterbury.

Bohannon, batting at number four for the first time, made a fine 87 before falling just before the close which Lancashire reached on 260-7 on an even day.  

Daniel Bell-Drummond opted to bowl after winning the toss and Kent gained an immediate success on a lively track when Alex Davies fell for 1 after nicking a thin edge to a Matt Milnes delivery that was caught low down by wicketkeeper Ollie Robinson.

With the ball swinging significantly in the morning sunshine, Keaton Jennings and Red Rose debutant Luke Wells batted cautiously although Jennings produced a number of nice drives when the bowlers overpitched.

But Darren Stevens, the veteran 45 year-old all-rounder who opened the attack with a miserly eight over spell that cost just 11 runs, had Jennings well caught at third slip by Jack Leaning for 16 to leave the visitors in early trouble on 30-2.

Wells, who opened his Red Rose account with a glance for four to fine leg from his 21st delivery, produced some nice drives of his own off both front and back foot to help Josh Bohannon slowly rebuild either side of lunch.

The pair had just posted their 50 partnership when Wells fell for 45, the left hander appearing to change his mind about playing a shot to overseas quick Miguel Cummins with the ball glancing the bat on its way through to Robinson.

Steven Croft was lbw to a swinging Stevens delivery for 2 to make the score 85-4 in the 40th over but Bohannon and Vilas combined to steady the innings before gradually increasing their dominance through the afternoon.

Bohannon worked really hard for his runs, reached fifty for the second match in a row from 136 balls which included consecutive boundaries off Cummins, while captain Vilas played with real authority in going to his half century from a 65-ball effort that included two sixes.

The pair were parted just after tea having added 102 for the fifth wicket when Vilas was lbw for 53 to left arm pace bowler Fred Klaassen, and the loss of Rob Jones for 2, stumped after being tempted down the wicket by spinner Jack Leaning, left Lancashire on 190-6.

Bohannon soldiered on with great determination and concentration and he received great support from Luke Wood, who mixed attack with defence in his 28 not out, in a partnership that added 58 valuable runs in reasonable comfort given that Kent took the new ball with an hour of the day left.

The home attack stuck to their task well and they were rewarded when Cummins ended Bohannon’s 211-ball stay by trapping the clearly dismayed 24 year-old lbw for 87 with six overs to go.

Danny Lamb, returning to the side this week, remained unbeaten on 12 and will resume in the morning alongside Wood with Lancashire 260-7    

Ken Grime

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