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Hampshire v Sussex (T20 Blast)

Thu 20 July 2017

Alsop Impresses But Hampshire Suffer El Clasicoast Defeat

Tom Alsop struck an impressive half-century in Hampshire's T20 defeat against Sussex Sharks

Tom Alsop struck an impressive half-century but Hampshire suffered a six-wicket NatWest T20 Blast defeat against Sussex Sharks at the Ageas Bowl.

Alsop (64) hit five fours and two maximums in a stylish knock but Hampshire posted just 126-9 from the 20 overs.

In reply, Reece Topley, Shahid Afridi and Mason Crane took a wicket apiece, but Sussex chased down the total with just over two overs to spare.

Despite losing the wicket of Rilee Rossouw (1) in the opening over, Hampshire got off to their usual, aggressive fast start.

Fresh from hitting an unbeaten century for the 2nd XI, Alsop crunched consecutive maximums off his opening two balls at the crease to leave his side on 17-1 after two overs.

However, James Vince (3) then chipped it to Luke Wright handing Jofra Archer his first wicket which left the hosts in a bit of trouble.

Hampshire were left up against it when George Bailey (6) and Sean Ervine (2) were dismissed in quick succession to leave the hosts on 38-4 after the initial five overs of the game.

Alsop was still at the crease though, and alongside Lewis McManus, the pair rebuilt the innings, moving their side along to 66-4 at the halfway point.

The top-order batsman then reached his first half-century of the season before he partnership was ended when McManus (12) was bowled by Danny Briggs (2-17) to reduce the hosts to 78-5.

Alsop was batting well, regularly finding the boundary but another wicket fell to see Hampshire 93-6.

Kyle Abbott brought up the Hampshire 100 soon after, but Alsop’s innings came to an end, when he was caught in the deepwith Archer taking his third wicket of the innings.

Abbott (14) had hit two boundaries, but when he bowled by Archer (4-18), the hosts were sitting on 114-8, and in need of quick runs of the final two overs.

Reece Topley (0) was then bowled by Chris Jordan (1-30), but Fidel Edwards (8*) smashed a maximum in the final over to get his side up to 126-9 after 20 overs.

Hampshire got off to the best possible start in reply as Topley got the ball to swing significantly back into Wright (2) and he was trapped in front to reduce Sussex to 4-1 in the opening over.

Nash and Ben Brown ensured there was no collapse, hitting boundaries at a frequent rate as the visitors dramatically recovered to end the fifth over on 48-1.

Vince made several bowling changes, but could not find the wicket, as the partnership moved beyond 50 runs.

The pair guided their side to 82-1 after the halfway stage, before Afridi (1-26) broke the partnership, trapping Brown (42) in front.

Mason Crane (1-19) then picked up the wicket of Nash (32) in the very next over, with Vince taking a smart, low catch as Sussex fell from 85-1 to 87-3.

Ross Taylor and Laurie Evans then moved the visitors into three figures, but just as it looked like they were going to bring the game home for their side, Taylor (15) was ran out by Vince to leave Sussex on 114-4.

Evans and Jordan avoided any more hiccups and guided their side to a six-wicket victory.