ESSEX Eagles suffered their second NatWest T20 Blast defeat in three days, as Daniel Bell-Drummond steered Kent Spitfires to a seven-wicket victory.

Ryan ten Doeschate’s side were looking to bounce back from Friday’s loss to Surrey.

But the Eagles were unable to secure their first victory of the T20 campaign.

Tamim Iqbal was brought into the side for Dan Lawrence, but the big-hitting Bangladesh international batsman was the first man to be sent back to the Beckenham pavilion.

The debutant, who has agreed to feature in eight NatWest T20 Blast fixtures for the Eagles, was bowled by Adam Milne for seven runs, before Tom Westley followed for 13 off the bowling of Jimmy Neesham.

Varun Chopra top scored for the visitors, but former England international spinner James Tredwell removed the opening batsman for 47.

Ravi Bopara and ten Doeschate forged an impressive partnership of 73 to take the Eagles past the 150 mark.

But ten Doeschate, who hit four fours and two sixes off his 18 balls, was dismissed for 38.

Bopara fell two runs later and, like Chopra, fell just short of a half-century.

The all-rounder recorded 45 runs before he was caught by Alex Blake off the bowling of Milne.

Three more Eagles wickets fell in the final over.

Ashar Zaidi and James Foster were out for one and nine respectively, while Paul Walter was run out.

The Eagles innings ended with Simon Harmer and Mohammad Amir, on one and nought, at the crease, with the visitors finishing on 166/8.

Neesham was the most dangerous of the Spitfires bowlers, as he finished with figures of 3-37, while Milne claimed two Eagles scalps and Coles and Tredwell took one each.

The Eagles were looking to get off to a good start with the ball and immediately put the home side on the backfoot by taking wickets.

But the Spitfires’ opening batsmen - Bell-Drummond and Joe Denly - registered a 50 partnership.

However, only two more runs were added before the first wicket fell.

Harmer, who was named the Professional Cricketers’ Association Player of the Month for June after an impressive month in the County Championship which saw the South African take 28 wickets in the wins over Warwickshire and defending champions Middlesex, bowled Denly for 32.

But the Eagles were made to wait seven overs, and allow the hosts to add 70 more runs, before being able to celebrate taking another wicket.

Sam Northeast hit 33 runs before Jamie Porter caught the Spitfires captain off the bowling of Harmer.

Sam Billings could only add six to the Spitfires total before the England One-Day international edged a Zaidi delivery behind to Foster.

But the wicket came with the Spitfires needing just 17 more runs to claim the win.

Bell-Drummond remained at the crease for the entire Spitfires innings, as he struck 90 runs off just 55 balls, which included eight fours and four maximums.

Neesham, fresh from claiming vital wickets to hamper the Eagles’ chances of coming away triumphant, ended on eight not out as the home side wrapped up the victory.

Harmer was the pick of the bowlers, as the spinner took 2-21 off four overs, while Zaidi finished on 1-20.

But Amir, Porter, Walter and Bopara were unable to claim a scalp with the ball.

The Eagles will be hoping that two consecutive home games will work in their favour.

Somerset and Glamorgan visit Chelmsford this week.