Michael Di Venuto: Surrey have been poor in Royal London One-Day Cup

BY MARCUS HOOK

Surrey sank to the foot of the Royal London One-Day Cup South Division last week following an embarrassing eight-wicket defeat to Kent, the solitary team below the South Londoners going into the contest.

The Oval outfit were skittled for 127 with only Dean Elgar making it past 15 for an unbeaten 62 off 94 balls.

Kent, like Surrey weakened by injuries, made light of the run-chase, coasting home with more than 21 overs to spare.

With six losses out of seven, this is now Surrey’s worst start to a List A campaign since 2009, when they registered two wins out of eight in the NatWest Pro40 League – the second coming in the eighth and final game, at Leicester.

Head coach Michael Di Venuto offered no excuses for the South Londoners’ wretched run in the 50-over competition.

“We’ve been poor in this tournament, there’s no hiding that, and today it simply got worse, just when I didn’t think it could,” said Di Venuto.

“You had Dean Elgar prepared to bat through the majority of our innings. Seven other guys made some sort of a start, and had the opportunity to go on with him, but no-one did, and that’s tremendously disappointing.

“We played on that same deck a couple of days ago and it was a pretty good wicket. We thought it might do a little bit early on, but it certainly wasn’t a 120-odd all-out type of surface.

“Unfortunately we weren’t good enough. Kent bowled some decent lengths but some of our wickets were pretty comical.”

Surrey’s second eleven did break their duck in the corresponding 50-over competition, with a rain-affected 42-run Duckworth-Lewis victory over Sussex at New Malden last Friday.

Sussex recovered from 43-6 after being put into bat to make 205, with Matt Dunn and Ryan Patel returning 3-38 and 3-33 respectively. Patel then saw his side home with a confident 30 not out, building on the foundations laid by Arun Harinath (59) and Jamie Smith (43). Despite propping up the South Division table, wins in Surrey’s three remaining Second Eleven Trophy group matches – against Middlesex, Kent and Glamorgan – could yet see them steal a place in the semi-finals.

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