sports gazette

We can beat anyone, insists Kent paceman Griffiths

Published: 14 May 2015

Kent bowler David Griffiths believes the Spitfires can build on last season’s promising performances in one-day cricket and compete for the 2015 T20 Blast.

Jimmy Adams’ team made a bright start to England’s domestic Twenty20 competition last season, winning three out of their first four matches, but failed to progress from the Group Stage after tailing off.

Quick bowler Griffiths, however, insists new recruits have improved Kent’s squad and the 29-year-old believes the team can go a long way in this campaign’s tournament.

“White ball cricket, as a whole, went very well for the club last year and we want to build on that this season,” the former Hampshire paceman said.

“The boys are very excited for the Blast. Last year we had a decent tournament but fell away towards the end which was a shame.

“But we’ve added to the squad with Joe (Denly) and Matt (Coles) so hopefully we can go a couple of steps further and get a trophy.

“We think we’ve got a very talented group of cricketers, who are all playing for each other and pushing in the same direction.

“We know we can beat anyone on our day.”

Griffiths has endured a turbulent career, which has been marred by reoccurring injuries since he signed his first professional contract with Hampshire in 2005.

But the bowler, who grew up in the Isle of Wight, tasted success by winning the Clydesdale Bank 40-over competition with Hants in 2012, and hopes to enjoy similar triumphs at Kent.

We’ve got a very talented group of cricketers ... we can beat anyone on our day

“It was the best day of my career so far,” he admitted.

“Winning a competition at Lord’s off the last ball of the game in front of 25,000 people was a pretty good day out.

“I’d love to help Kent get to a big final. But at the moment I'm concentrating on getting a proper run in the team and hopefully I can start winning games for Kent again.”

Griffiths, who took eight wickets in seven Twenty20 matches last year and excelled in Kent’s final County Championship game with 6-53 against Gloucestershire, also praised wicket-keeper batsman Sam Billings and suggested he can only improve as a cricketer.

“Bilbo’s development over the last couple of years since I’ve been at Kent has been unbelievable, his batting and keeping has come on leaps and bounds,” the bowler said.

“He had a great season last year and got recognition with call-ups to the Lions and the full England squad.

“It’s a real challenge bowling to him in the nets, he’s always coming at you with some kind of different shot!

“He’s a very talented youngster and is going to learn more about his game and I’m sure he will get even better. Hopefully he can play a big part in our season in all formats.”

Kent face Sussex in their opening fixture of the 2015 T20 Blast on Friday evening at the Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence. For more information visit http://www.kentcricket.co.uk/.

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