September 7, 2003

Hawks defeat to Lightnings leaves them with work to do.

Hampshire Hawks suffered their second successive defeat in the National League Division Two, losing to runaway leaders Lancashire Lightning by 45 runs at the Rose Bowl. Hampshire must now win one of their remaining two matches (Middlesex at Lords 14th September and Derbyshire at Derby 21st September) to gain promotion to Division One.

A tidy spell from Dimitri Mascarenhas at the start of the innings had the Lightnings on the back foot, his spell of 2 for 20 in nine overs, in which he equalled Shaun Udal's Hampshire record of 31 wickets in a season, gave the home side a boost especially as one of the wickets was the prolific Stuart Law the Australian premier batsman.

At 52 for 4, with Alan Mullally and James Tomlinson chipping in with a wicket apiece, one from an outstanding Mascarenhas catch, West Indian Carl Hooper and Glen Chapple got together, posting 124 for the 5th wicket. Hooper who played as only he can built back the innings from scratch, was finally out for 73 in just 88 balls, driving Shaun Udal over mid-off for a hugh six in the process.

Chapple also hit a six and with help from Warren Hegg took their side past the 200 mark.

When Hampshire started their reply, which was always going to be difficult, they got off to the worst possible start losing Aussie Simon Katich and Derek Kenway with the score on 3.

Some steady batting from Nic Pothas and John Crawley steadied the boat, but the accuracy of the Lancashire seamers continued to create problems. Crawley was beaten end up by a ball from Kyle Hogg, and Francis edged Wood behind having just stroked him for successive fours.

Nic Pothas looked a lone soul in the battle to keep up with the run rate, but when he fell for 58 the end was in sight. Udal stayed to the end, but Hampshire were well short.

Hooper with three wickets in a tidy spell was the pick of a good Lancashire attack.