Kent will play in Group 3 of the 2021 County Championship – here’s their team preview and fixtures list.
County Championship 2021: Kent preview
2/6 South Group
In: Nathan Gilchrist (Somerset), Miguel Cummins (WI/Middlesex), Tawanda Muyeye (Sussex)
Out: Calum Haggett, Ivan Thomas (both released)
Joe Denly – with time called on his Test career, the 35-year-old’s return to the county ranks is a huge boost for Kent, adding a wealth of experience to a gifted batch of strokemakers. The Canterbury-born right-hander needs 715 more first-class runs to reach 10,000 for the county.
Nathan Gilchrist – Kent pulled off a minor coup with the capture of the Harare-born quick from Somerset, who couldn’t hide their frustration at losing him. “We offered him a multi-year extension that would have enabled us to continue to support his development, and we genuinely felt that he would be competing for a first XI place this season and beyond,” said Andy Hurry, Somerset’s director of cricket. Gilchrist, who attended the same Johannesburg school as Kagiso Rabada and possesses genuine pace, can expect first-team opportunities this summer.
County Championship 2021: Kent Fixtures
Northamptonshire v Kent, Thursday April 8, County Ground, Northampton
Kent v Yorkshire, Thursday April 15, Canterbury
Kent v Lancashire, Thursday April 22, Canterbury
Glamorgan v Kent, Thursday April 29, Cardiff
Yorkshire v Kent, Thursday May 6, Leeds
Sussex v Kent, Thursday May 13, Hove
Kent v Glamorgan, Thursday May 20, Canterbury
Kent v Northamptonshire, Thursday June 3, Canterbury
Lancashire v Kent, Sunday July 4, Manchester
Kent v Sussex, Sunday July 11, Beckenham
After years of stagnation, Kent are building a squad capable of challenging on all fronts. A fourth-place finish in 2019, their first campaign back in the top-flight for nearly a decade, was almost followed by a trip to Lord’s last summer, as they finished just behind Essex in the South Group. And this despite Zak Crawley, Sam Billings and Denly playing just four matches between them due to England commitments. The seam attack of Harry Podmore, Matt Milnes and the extraordinary Darren Stevens (who is entering his 25th season) was exceptional again, sharing 63 wickets at 18, and has been further boosted by the arrival of Bajan quick Miguel Cummins for the first eight matches; while in Hamidullah Qadri and Marcus O’Riordan they have two exciting young spinners.
4th in Division 1
This preview first appeared in issue 42 of Wisden Cricket Monthly.