Nottinghamshire too strong for Hampshire
Nottinghamshire 180 for 7 (24 overs) beat Hampshire 145 for 7 (24 overs) by 35 runs
New signing Steven Mullaney took three quick wickets to rip the heart out of the Hampshire batting and set up a convincing 35-run win for Nottinghamshire in their Clydesdale Bank 40 clash at the Rose Bowl.
Mullaney, signed from Lancashire in the close season, finished with 3 for 24 as Hampshire's poor start to the season continued. Hampshire have now lost all five matches in both competitions and there was never any doubt they would lose this encounter after overnight rain and persistent drizzle reduced the match to 24 overs each.
Home captain Nic Pothas chose to field first and his decision was immediately called into question as second-wicket pairing Hashim Amla and Alex Hales put on 69 in only eight overs.
Veteran former England all-rounder Dominic Cork put a break on the scoring by taking three wickets in 10 balls - removing Amla for 33, Hales for 41 and then Mullaney for nine to a catch at the wicket.
But Hampshire struggled to build on their successes with Chris Read and Paul Franks putting on 48 for the sixth wicket to build a formidable total of 180 for 8 from their 24 overs. Hampshire gave a debut to Sri Lankan left-arm spinner Ragana Herath but he conceded 21 off his first two overs and 38 from his four, without taking a wicket. Cork finished as Hampshire's most successful bowler with 3 for 30.
The hosts never really looked like reaching their target. Openers Michael Carberry and Jimmy Adams put on 43 in 41 balls for the first wicket with the latter striking two fours and two sixes in his aggressive 29. But Mullaney came on to change the course of the match by dismissing Adams, James Vince and the hard-hitting Sean Ervine on his way to demolishing the Hampshire top order.
Mullaney's first spell was made up of three for five from three overs and, although he became more expensive later, the damage was done. Hampshire were 63 for 5 when Pothas was out, leaving his side still needing 118 from 10 overs.
Only then did Hampshire cut loose, with South African Neil McKenzie and Liam Dawson putting on 67 in seven overs, but the cause was already lost. McKenzie fell at 127 and Cork went at 135, leaving Dawson to play for respectability with a top score of 47 from 28 balls which included three fours and two sixes.