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Cricket: Kent captain Billings keeping calm

PUBLISHED: 18:00 12 September 2018

Kent captain Sam Billings during a nets session for England (pic John Walton/PA)

Kent captain Sam Billings during a nets session for England (pic John Walton/PA)

PA Archive/PA Images

Kent captain Sam Billings admitted to a sense of relief after seeing his side beat Middlesex by three wickets at Lord’s.

The win leaves them in second place in Division Two of the County championship, 12 points behind leaders Warwickshire as the promotion race goes down to the wire.

And Billings, who hit an unbeaten 31 to see his side to their target of 155, said: “I woke up very early this morning, about 6am, with this match going through my head so it’s great to get over the win line in what was ultimately a very close game.

“The partnership between Grant Stewart and Darren Stevens (75 runs) in our first innings really was the only difference between these two sides and if we’d been chasing another 30 runs it could have been a different story.

“Getting across the line was huge. I felt Heino Kuhn and Daniel Bell-Drummond showed last night how to go about chasing on a tricky surface (in a 52-run stand). It was almost tip-and-run at times, but it was exactly the way to go about things out there because you never let the bowler settle.”

Kent return to home turf to welcome Glamorgan next week before a potential title decider against Warwickshire in the final round of fixtures.

But Billings is not thinking too far ahead at this point, adding: “If I’m totally honest, we know this division is going down to the wire. We play Glamorgan and then Warwickshire in the last game, but all our focus is completely on Glamorgan at Canterbury next week and trying to get a result there.

“We can’t do anything about other teams, neither can we afford to take our eye off the ball in a three-horse race. We want to be in positions like this, now it’s a matter of getting over the finish line.”

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