Hampshire 2ndXI ECB Trophy Champions

Hampshire 2nd XI won the ECB Second XI Trophy 2003 in convincing style defeating their Warwickshire counterparts by eight wickets and some 16.4 overs to spare with James Adams scoring an exhilarating 97 not out to lead his side home from the front.

Warwickshire captain Tony Frost won the toss and chose to bat on a sunny morning with a good crowd in attendance, but his side made a poor start losing half their side with 81 on the board. Their run rate was good, but they lost wickets at regular intervals to Hampshire all-pace attack.

James Bruce and James Tomlinson started the rot and it took a while for the visitors to settle. Skipper Will Kendall gambled on bowling Warwickshire out by using his main strike bowlers early, with Bruce being particular difficult to score off, taking three wickets for just 22 in his 10 over allocation.

The Warwickshire tail wagged, with Nick Warren top scoring with 40, coupled with Jamie Spires chipping in with a quick 19 to give them a more respectable total of 190 than they may have expected.

Adams and James Hamblin gave Hampshire a super start with 55 runs on the board in just 11 overs before the latter drove at a ball from Mo Sheikh too soon and was caught at short mid-off.

Adams was joined by Will Kendall and they shared a century stand to put the home side well in command. Kendall was out near the end for 46, but it was left to Adams to take Hampshire home.

Hampshire's James Hibberd had the unique position of playing in two successive winning finals, for Kent against Hampshire in 2002 and this one.

This was Hampshire's first win in the ECB Second XI Trophy, having lost on four previous occasions, which made it all the sweeter.

Charles van der Gucht who was forced to retire last month, collected the trophy from Hampshire Cricket Chairman Rod Bransgrove. Charlie had captained the side on eight of the qualifying matches, and skipper for the day Will Kendall magnaminously allowed it.