August 5, 2003

Record breaking Mascarenhas bowls Hawks to vital win at Hove

Hampshire Hawks recorded their fourth successive victory in the ECB National League Division Two in their clash against Sussex Sharks under the Hove floodlights to augment their second place in the table behind Lancashire.

An impressive bowling display from the countries leading NCL wicket-taker Dimitri Mascarenhas at the start of the Sussex innings left the home side with too much to do, while Mascarenhas broke a long-standing Hampshire record in the process.

Winning the toss was important as the Hawks chose to bat first in warm evening sunshine. They got off to the best possible start with James Hamblin and Simon Katich posting a century opening stand, both batsmen getting to half centuries.

John Crawley and John Francis continued where they left off the previous day against Scottish Saltires in adding a 77-run partnership which brought Hampshire to a respectable score of 250-5, with Mascarenhas chipping in with 20 runs off just 11 balls at the end.

Sussex Shark, in reply, lost their first five wickets for 37 runs, which made their task of chasing the score extremely difficult, especially after bad light stopped play when two of the main floodlights failed and readjusted the target to 244 to win off 41 overs.

Mascarenhas took the first three wickets to fall and with some sprightly bowling from Chaminda Vaas and James Bruce decimated the home sides top order.

Some late uninhibited hitting from Michael Yardy and Mark Davis kept the crowd entertained, and a couple of missed catches delayed the inevitable.

Dimitri Mascarenhas's four-wicket haul was his fourth of the season, the most ever in a season by a Hampshire bowler. Two bowlers have achieved three in a season - Tom Mottram in 1976 and Trevor Jesty in 1978.