By Alun Rhys Chivers
On a record-breaking day’s cricket, Glamorgan won an exciting 50-over contest at St Helen’s, as they beat Kent by 15 runs in the final Royal London One Day Cup contest which saw 697 runs scored in total.
Having won the toss and invited Glamorgan to bat first, Kent got off to the perfect start as they took two wickets in the first eight overs. Jacques Rudolph and David Lloyd provided two catches for wicketkeeper Sam Billings, the former off Matt Coles and the latter off Ivan Thomas.
But it was Glamorgan who largely dominated the rest of the innings, as Colin Ingram struck his third century of the competition on his way to 114 off 98 balls, in an innings which included six fours and eight sixes.
His third wicket partnership with Will Bragg was worth 212 in 31.4 overs, the latter scoring a List A career best 94, hitting 11 fours in the process.
Towards the end of the innings, a cameo from Andrew Salter (29) included two fours and three sixes as Glamorgan amassed 356-7 in their 50 overs, beating their previous highest List A total of 344-5 against Lincolnshire in the NatWest Trophy in 1994.
But it was Darren Stevens who stole the show for Kent, amassing 147 off 67 balls in an innings which included 14 sixes – a record against Glamorgan in one-day cricket, beating Ali Brown’s 12 for Surrey. Stevens also hit 10 fours in the innings.
Stevens’ partnership with Sam Billings was worth 131, and it gave the visitors hope as they chased an ambitious target.
Chris Cooke equalled the record for the most List A catches by a Glamorgan wicket-keeper in List A cricket, emulating Eifion Jones and Adrian Shaw.
There was also a career-best bowling performance by David Lloyd, who took five wickets for 53.
And to cap it all off, there were 35 sixes in the match, equalling the previous county record in the game between Nottinghamshire and Northamptonshire last June.
After his five-wicket haul, Lloyd said: “It was very pleasing, I suppose. Jacques told me to run in as hard as I can and see what happens.
“The effort was there and it paid off today. Other days it might not go your way so it was very pleasing.
It was a tough wicket to bowl on, I think. The length was crucial. If it was too full or too short, it was easy for the batters.
“But if you bowled in the right spot it offered a little bit, so it’s pleasing that we came away with the win.”
On his record-breaking knock, Stevens said: “My highest score, and it’s all a bit of a blur to be honest.
“I’ve got a six hour journey to think about it! I’d say it’s my best knock, it’s just a shame we didn’t win the game. It was a belter of a pitch, with a bit of pace in it and bounce. It was a little bit tennis ball-y. It was just a good deck.
“We just kept losing wickets. All the boys down the order can bat and the run out, we probably didn’t need to take it on when we only needed about 16 runs. It’s just a shame really, those boys can bat.
“It was sitting here and said to Joe Denly, “Was it good to watch?” and he was like, “Yeah, a hell of a knock.” It must have been special to watch. 35 sixes! Ridiculous! Remarkable!
“Braggy played brilliantly and then Colin [Ingram] just does what he does. He’s outstanding, so hard to bowl at.”