Northamptonshire’s bowlers worked hard on the opening day against Kent but found little reward.
All eyes were on Crawley after Ricardo Vasconcelos had put Kent in after heavy overnight rain saw both Captains eye up a green tinged wicket. After a strong appeal from the opening ball of the match and an edge falling inches short of second slip there was little assistance on offer for the bowlers as Crawley and Compton found safe but slow runs through the first hour.
Crawley’s half-century came in 75 balls, with the opening duo putting on 93 before Crawley edged Kelly behind just after lunch to give Northamptonshire hope of a profitable afternoon.
There was little joy to follow though as the in-form Compton and Bell-Drummond continued to progress at a serene pace. It took Compton 53 minutes to reach double figures with his fifty coming in 131 deliveries, Bell-Drummond passing the same mark in 104 balls.
The second new ball offered more movement than the first, but still Northamptonshire found little support from now warm and clear conditions. Sanderson did find some joy however, breaking the 176 run partnership to claim his 300th wicket for Northamptonshire. Bell-Drummond unable to convert as he edged to first slip where Vasconcelos took a good low catch for 83.
Kent 286/2 (Sanderson 1/36, Kelly 1/66)