Alsop Steals the Show but Academy Fall Short

Hampshire Academy denied a third successive SEPL victory despite a brilliant innings from Hampshire Academy batsman Tom Alsop

A superb century from opener Tom Alsop (151) was not enough to steer Hampshire to a third successive league victory, as they fell to a 54-run defeat against St Cross Symondians in the Southern Electric Premier League.

Alsop was the star of the show for the Academy side, but his excellent knock was in vain as St Cross’ first-innings total of 290, thanks largely to a well-made century from Adam Rouse (111), proved to be too difficult a chase for the visitors.

After electing to bat first, St Cross soon found themselves in early trouble as spin duo Joe Weatherley (4-43) and Mason Crane (4-102) made early inroads, despite opener Michael Pollard (54) contributing with a half-century.

Both bowlers caused further problems as the home-side fell to 161-6, however an elegant century from former Hampshire batsman Rouse, saw the hosts seize the momentum to post a challenging first-innings total, that had previously looked unlikely at the half-way stage.

Hampshire began their reply in unconvincing fashion as early wickets left the visitors struggling on 28-3 in the opening overs, with two of the top four batsman falling without scoring.

Alsop did his best to guide the visitors towards the required target despite the early losses and his wonderful innings gave them an outside chance as the left-hander led the recovery to help reach 165-4.

Despite his best efforts, Alsop was the next man to depart and with 106 runs still required, Hampshire’s chances of victory soon faded with the final wickets falling to see Hampshire dismissed for 237 with three overs remaining.