MATCH PREVIEW | Kent v Essex


Essex travel to Canterbury to face Kent in their final match of the season in party mood having already secured promotion.

Despite defeat by Glamorgan at The E.C.G last week, the six point haul from the match was sufficient to ensure that the 2017 season will see the County compete in Division One for the first time since 2010.

Head coach Chris Silverwood paid tribute to the efforts of the players and staff.

“Our achievement is the culmination of a lot of hard work by the players and also by everyone behind the scenes at the club and I don’t think anyone can deny that we are worthy champions,” he insisted.

“Clinching promotion was a wonderful feeling. It was something that we were all determined to achieve when we started the season and now we have done just that, we are both delighted and excited about next year.

“We have an exciting time ahead of us at Essex cricket. We are going to be tested by the best sides in the country and it will be a challenge for our players. For them, it will not be a matter of just trying to raise their game but generally just getting even better at what they are doing.

“Personally, I am very proud to be part of the Essex success but the hard work regarding planning for next year is already underway. Now we are back in Division One, we have to make sure that, not only do we stay there but that we are competitive and challenge to win it.

“There is a big challenge ahead of us but it’s one that we will relish.”

Essex will be missing two key figures when they return to Division one as both David Masters and Graham Napier  have announced their retirement at the end of this season.

Chris Silverwood acknowledged their contributions over the years. “They have been wonderful servants to the county and, of course, both will be sorely missed,” he stated.

“They have been excellent professionals and are perfect examples to young cricketers in both their performances and attitude.”

Essex have lost just one of their last nine matches against Kent with 4 wins and four draws and whilst the Division Two champions Essex have won their last two away games by an innings margin.

The retiring Graham Napier is the top wicket taker in the division this season with 63, overall he has 69 in first-class cricket this season, by far his most productive campaign since his debut in 1997.

The match with Kent starts on Tuesday at 10.30 a.m.

Essex squad:
Ryan ten Doeschate (27) Captain
Adam Wheater (31) Wicket-keeper
Varun Chopra (6)
Kishen Velani (8)
Dave Masters (9)
Nick Browne (10)
Aaron Beard (14)
Tom Westley (21)
Paul Walter (22)
Ravi Bopara (25)
Dan Lawrence (28)
Matt Dixon (30)
Will Rhodes (-)