Gatting Shines Against Ashes Stars 

Hampshire's Joe Gatting hit an excellent unbeaten century in an star-studded fixture at Newclose

A tremendous unbeaten century from Joe Gatting (153*) guided Ryan Harris’ Hampshire XI to an eight-wicket friendly victory over Chris Rogers’ EICA XI at Newclose.

After half centuries for Tom Alsop (75), Mitch Marsh (70) and Peter Nevill (67) had initially seen Rogers’ side to 283-8d in the first innings, a superb knock from Gatting saw Hampshire seize control as they declared on 306-6.

With limited time remaining in the game, Rogers (70) looked in good touch to see the EICA to 148-5d before giving his attack the chance to have a second bowling effort, in which Hampshire reached the required 126 runs for the loss of two wickets.

In a fixture aimed at ensuring a number of international stars enjoyed high-quality match practice, as well as youngsters gaining valuable experience, the match featured a mixture of players from both elements as two sides were formed from these for the two day fixture.

After being inserted to bat first, Rogers was one of two early wickets to fall in their pursuit of a large total. His side reached 16-2 before contributions from Alsop, and fellow Austalian internationals Marsh and Nevill saw a competitive first-innings total posted, with Adam Zampa (4-69) the pick of the bowlers.

Despite the first-innings total, Gatting’s sensational innings, that came at a strike-rate of more than 75, saw Hampshire surpass the EICA first-innings efforts with good support also coming from skipper Harris (48), who gained some important time in the middle.

EICA faced a small deficit of 23 runs, and opener Rogers saw his side comfortably past that without issue, before going on to build a lead. The left-hander looked impressive before falling to Brad Taylor (3-55) who bowled with excellent flight and turn before the EICA declared with a lead of 126.

With an opportunity to bat again, Hampshire sought to chase down the target with Michael Pollard (37) and Lewis McManus (37) the main highlights as they successfully reached the required runs to claim victory. 

Words: Will Brewster