A battling half-century from James Vince (69) was unable to prevent Hampshire suffering a six-wicket defeat against Lancashire in the NatWest T20 Blast semi-final fixture.
Vince fought admirably throughout the innings but some efficient bowling from the Lancashire attack made scoring difficult as Hampshire were dismissed for 115 from 19.5 overs.
Wickets for Danny Briggs (2-19), Will Smith (1-15) and Fidel Edwards (1-24) were not enough in reply as Lancashire were guided home thanks to an unbeaten innings from the steady Karl Brown (45*).
Hampshire began positively through openers Vince and Michael Carberry (13) to reach 33 without loss, before two wickets in as many balls from George Edwards (2-16) restricted the scoring rate following the powerplay overs.
Vince continued to look impressive however the loss of three middle-order wickets in quick succession at the hands of Stephen Parry (3-21) and Aaron Lilley (2-11) ensured Hampshire again stumbled at 77-5.
The right-hander then reached his well-made half-century shortly after but despite his valiant efforts, wickets continued to tumble and he eventually fell to James Faulkner (3-29) as Hampshire’s innings soon come to a swift end.
An early wicket for Edwards saw the dangerous Ashwell Prince (14) depart in just the third over and Hampshire will have hoped that further quick wickets would trouble Lancashire’s chasing pursuit.
Alex Davies (18) and Brown steered the total past 50 but when Briggs then made the breakthrough to remove the former in his opening over, Hampshire hoped to make further inroads.
Briggs then struck again thanks to a superb diving catch from Sean Ervine to see the back of England wicket-keeper Jos Buttler (10) and Smith also picked up a valuable wicket to see the back of Steven Croft (9).
However the resilient Brown remained and it was the opener and James Faulkner (20*) who guided his side home as Lancashire claimed the victory with seven balls to spare.
Words: Will Brewster