Muchall and Benkenstein secure Durham chase
Durham 162 for 3 beat Hampshire 161 by seven wickets
The return of Dimitri Mascarenhas failed to prevent Hampshire from sliding to a seven-wicket defeat in the Clydesdale Bank 40 League match against Durham at Chester-le-Street. He took all the wickets in reducing Durham to 37 for three in reply to 161, but Gordon Muchall and Dale Benkenstein then steered the hosts home with 20 balls remaining.
It was Durham's third win in four matches in the competition and Muchall's unbeaten 67 took his aggregate to 264, while Benkenstein finished on 60. Mascarenhas made his comeback after playing only one Twenty20 match last June since suffering a bad Achilles injury during last year's Indian Premier League.
Kyle Coetzer pulled him for six in his first over but he then had Phil Mustard caught behind by Michael Bates. Ben Stokes went the same way, attempting a forcing shot wide of off-stump, then Coetzer got an inside edge into his stumps when shaping to drive.
Mascarenhas rested with figures of 3 for 20 after six overs, but while Simon Jones opened up with a fiery five-over spell no-one seriously troubled the fourth-wicket pair in their unbroken stand of 125.
They cut out risk, maintaining the required rate of four an over mainly by picking up ones and twos. They totalled five boundaries between them in their half-centuries.
Durham's seamers kept a stranglehold on Hampshire with only academy product Benny Howell, who was born in France, providing lengthy resistance. Yet to make his first-class debut, the 22-year-old had a previous highest score of 15 in three games in this competition but held the innings together by making 66.
Wickets fell regularly and Stokes cashed in with four late ones, while Mitch Claydon claimed the important scalps of Neil McKenzie and Sean Ervine in his first spell, then came back to take the last wicket and finish with 3 for 16.
Hampshire were all out in 37.2 overs with Durham relying entirely on seam on the sluggish pitch, despite including two spinners in Gareth Breese and Scott Borthwick.
The only stand of note was 68 for the fifth wicket between Howell and Liam Dawson, who made 38. Howell reached 50 off 71 balls with four fours then drove Chris Rushworth for six over long-on before driving a catch to mid-off.