Match Preview: Essex Eagles v Kent Spitfires


Essex Eagles v Kent Spitfires

Royal London Cup
The Cloudfm County Ground
Sunday 01 August
11am start


Essex Eagles host old adversaries, Kent Spitfires at The Cloudfm County Ground on Sunday when the two teams continue their Battle of the Bridge encounters in the Royal London Cup.

In both of the two white-ball exchanges this summer in the Vitality Blast, it was the Spitfires who prevailed and now Tom Westley’s men are looking for a win to redress the balance.

The Eagles are also eager to get back on the winning trail following the 182-run defeat to Worcestershire Rapids on Thursday night.

That loss followed two successes by the Eagles in the opening two 50-over matches and they now face a Spitfires side who suffered frustration in their latest match. The encounter with Sussex Sharks at Hove was abandoned with the Spitfires’ innings 4.2 overs short of constituting a match, although they were well ahead of the DLS par score.

It was the second time in three days that Kent had suffered an abandonment. Added to their defeats in the opening two fixtures, the Spitfires now have just 2 points from 4 matches.


The Eagles have named a 13-man squad for the clash with Kent Spitfires that includes Ben Allison and Jack Plom who both made their List A debuts last Thursday.

However, neither Jamie Porter (side strain) nor Paul Walter (hamstring) are expected to feature in the remainder of the competition.


Anthony McGrath’s View:

“Yes, we are disappointed with the result and there are things to work on before we face Kent Spitfires on Sunday, but by no means will there be any knee-jerk reactions.”

“Sometimes when you lose games, there is a tendency just to look at what we did wrong but you have to give Worcestershire a whole lot of credit for the way that they played,” he continued.

“They put us under pressure and outplayed us. Their two openers were superb, they didn’t take any risks and at 243-0 you have to take your hat off to them. Sometimes you just have to acknowledge the performance of the opposition.

“Ironically, we were happy at the halfway point because we clawed it back in the last 19 overs and after the way we batted on Sunday, we felt we had a chance of chasing them down but losing early wickets was hard from thereon.

“Losing Jamie (Porter) and Paul (Walter) gave us two big blows to the balance of our team but we have the quality in the squad to address that going forward.

“I was happy with the way we started the competition with the win at Hampshire and then following it up against Middlesex, which was probably one of our best one-day performances, so we need to get back to that level,” he continued.

“We need to review what we’ve done really well so far and put that into practice when we meet Kent.

“We will keep working hard to get things right and hopefully get back to putting in more of the levels of performance we achieved in those first two games.”

The Opposition:

Jack Leaning, who was named as the Spitfires captain for the Royal London tournament, has been called up by the Trent Rockets for two matches. He becomes the eighth Kent player to be involved in The Hundred, along with Daniel Bell-Drummond, Zak Crawley, Joe Denly, Fred Klaassen, Alex Blake, Sam Billings and Jordan Cox.

Additionally, Harry Podmore is likely to be sidelined due to an injury picked up during the week.

Ollie Robinson will lead the Spitfires have named a 13-man squad for the match:

Ollie Robinson (c & wk), Harry Finch, Nathan Gilchrist, Joe Gordon, Heino Kuhn, James Logan, Matt Milnes, George Munsey, Tawanda Muyeye, Marcus O’Riordan, Hamid Quadri, Darren Stevens and Grant Stewart.

How to Watch:

There will be a Live Stream service from The Cloudfm County Ground which will be broadcasting ahead of play from 11am via the Essex Cricket Matchzone. The stream will also be available via the Essex Cricket YouTube Channel.

Access via the Essex Cricket Matchzone is available here.