Kent 621 (Bell-Drummond 300*, Russell 6-175) beat Northamptonshire 237 (Keogh 97, Agar 5-63) and 369 (White 59, Keogh 57, Procter 52, Denly 4-164, Qadri 3-51) by an innings and 15 runs
Kent’s spinners finally overcame a late flourish from the Northamptonshire tail to wrap up an innings victory at Wantage Road and climb to eighth place in the LV= Insurance County Championship Division One table.
The Northamptonshire pair both registered career-best performances in first-class cricket, with Sanderson hitting 46 before White, batting at No. 10, hammered a maiden half-century from 68 balls.
He was last man out for 59 to seal Kent’s first Championship victory since the opening round of the campaign, when they defeated the same opponents by seven wickets at Canterbury.
As they had done for most of the previous afternoon, Kent initially kept faith with an all-spin attack – which paid off after just 10 balls when Denly had Saif Zaib snapped up at short leg without adding to his overnight 43.
Tom Taylor displayed attacking intent, clubbing both Denly and Jack Leaning to the leg-side boundary and Lewis McManus attempted to follow suit as he latched onto a long hop from Qadri, only to pick out the square leg fielder.
Taylor found an unexpected ally in Sanderson, who batted with freedom and rattled up a string of boundaries in their lively partnership of 38, prompting Kent to take the new ball and entrust it to their seamers.
It made little difference to Sanderson, who thrashed Arshdeep Singh twice to the cover fence, but Wes Agar duly provided the breakthrough – albeit in unusual fashion, deflecting Sanderson’s drive onto the stumps to run out Taylor at the non-striker’s end.
However, the eighth-wicket partnership was surpassed by the ninth, with White slamming Denly back over his head for four and unveiling a rarely seen range of shots, including the reverse sweep, to lift Northamptonshire beyond 300.
Sanderson stroked Denly for a couple on the leg-side to bring up the 50 partnership – and the highest score of his 15-year county career – but he missed the opportunity of a maiden half-century, taking a swing at Qadri and edging behind.
White, however, made no such mistake, dispatching the leg-spinner cleanly over the top for a boundary to bring up his personal landmark before Denly finally had him caught behind to seal Kent’s success.