Billy Godleman had a day to remember as Derbyshire moved into a commanding position in the LV County Championship Division Two match against Kent.
The opener became only the fifth Derbyshire batsmen to score centuries in three consecutive innings and the first for 25 years, joining William Storer, Levi Wright, Peter Kirsten and Kim Barnett in the county’s record books.
Godleman followed his hundred at Leicester and 108 in the first innings with an unbeaten 104 out of 234 for 3 before Derbyshire declared after rain held up play for two-and-a half hours.
Kent’s chances of chasing down a target of 329 looked slim on the evidence of their first innings but Rob Key and Daniel Bell-Drummond played well to reduce it by 30 when bad light brought an early close.
They had gone into the third day well behind in the game with Derbyshire 73 for 1, already 167 runs on, and the early breakthroughs the visitors needed failed to come as Godleman and Chesney Hughes took the second wicket stand to 114 in 34 overs.
A strong wind, which blew Sam Northeast’s cap off at one stage, may have hampered the bowlers but their were few alarms for Godleman and Hughes with both reaching 50 with boundaries from James Tredwell.
Hughes, who was dropped at cover on 46, was bowled going for another big hit at Tredwell but Wayne Madsen accelerated towards a declaration with 43 from 41 balls before he was bowled by Ivan Thomas.
Goldeman’s progress had stalled as he approached the milestone and he was in the nineties for 41 balls before he nudged Tredwell behind square and raced through for the single that took him to three figures.
Alex Hughes became the second Derbyshire player to retire hurt when a hand injury forced him to go for an x-ray but even against an attack two bowlers down, Kent had a hard road ahead of them but Key and Bell-Drummond negotiated 10 overs to leave a target of 299 on the final day.