Tuesday, June 20th, 2017

Clarke Hits Superb Ton To Steer Worcs Into First Innings Lead

Clarke Hits Superb Ton To Steer Worcs Into First Innings Lead

Worcestershire batsman Joe Clarke scored a superb first century of the season on the second day of the Specsavers County Championship clash with promotion rivals Kent at New Road.

The 21-year-old, who scored five Championship hundreds last summer, went to three figures with a boundary off Kent paceman Mitchell Claydon.

It came off 140 balls out of 220-5 and contained 17 fours.

Clarke had been on 34 not out overnight and again looked in impressive form with a straight drive for four off Matt Coles taking him to his half century.

The Academy product was given excellent support by George Rhodes in a fourth wicket stand of 131 in 33 overs.

Rhodes began the day with positive intent, cutting and cover driving Coles for four in the first over of the day.

The pair were relatively untroubled until Coles broke the stand as Rhodes, having made 45 off 109 balls with six fours, edged to Will Gidman at second slip.

Ben Cox joined Clarke and the pair saw Worcestershire through to lunch at 202 with Clarke unbeaten on 91.

Clarke gave a fist pump and saluted his team-mates on the boundary after bringing up his century shortly after the resumption.

Shah was posing a threat from the Diglis End and he struck twice with Cox (19) and Ross Whiteley (0) both lbw either side of Clarke going to his hundred.

But skipper Joe Leach came in full of attacking intent and four boundaries in an over from Gidman steered Worcestershire into a first innings lead.

The 26-year-old then collected three boundaries in quick succession off Claydon.