George Bailey led from the front to record his opening first-class century for Hampshire on day one of his side's Specsavers County Championship fixture against Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford.
The Hampshire captain made 127 and hit 17 of the 187 balls he received to the boundary. Even more significantly he shared four fifty-plus partnerships to enable his side to recover from 125-5 and reach 351-8 when the players eventually returned to the pavilion at the end of the opening day.
Even more encouragingly from a Hampshire perspective Kyle Abbott (76*) remains unbeaten, having batted with excellent good sense in his attacking style and the right-hander now has an opportunity to strengthen his team’s position on the second morning and overtake his career-best score of 80.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, Hampshire began patiently, reaching 30-0 in the opening ten overs.
However, the loss of three wickets in the space of as many overs, including the scalp of the dangerous Rilee Rossouw (4), saw the hosts gain the early initiative.
Bailey and James Vince (22) helped steady things before lunch, the duo batting patiently to ensure Lancashire made no further breakthroughs in the second hour of the session prior to lunch.
Lancashire’s bowlers made further in-roads following the interval though, claiming three more wickets in the afternoon session, but the home-side's attack were prevented from making further breakthroughs by Bailey, who was 94 not out at tea.
The relative respectability of Hampshire’s total was explained not only by Bailey’s skill but also by the obduracy of his partners.
The Hampshire skipper shared a stand of 69 for the fourth wicket with Vince and another of 52 for the sixth wicket with Lewis McManus, and he defied the Lancashire attack on a steamy afternoon when the bowlers frequently found it difficult to control the swinging ball, as Hampshire reached 202-6 at tea.
In the evening session Bailey took his valuable seventh-wicket stand with Gareth Berg (27) to 55 before latter was trapped LBW, but that wicket only brought Abbott to the crease and it thereby heralded the best period of the day for the away-side.
The pair added 83 in just 78 minutes and battled brilliantly to accumulate consistently with minimal risk, with Bailey bringing up his superb century during that time.
The 34-year-old gave Jimmy Anderson his first wicket of the day when his attempted cut only bottom-edged the ball into his stumps. By then, though, Hampshire were 314-8 and that position was strengthened by Abbott and Brad Taylor (18*) before the close.
All six Lancashire bowlers took wickets with Jarvis (2-59) and Procter (2-49) being the most successful members of an attack which rather lost its discipline when put under pressure by Abbott’s uninhibited hitting as he ensured his side finished in the ascendancy on the opening day.
Words: Press Association
Kyle Abbott struck a first-class career best on day two to help Hampshire build a good platform heading into the second half of their four-day fixture against Lancashire at Old Trafford.
The all-rounder finished unbeaten on 97* to help Hampshire post 395 from their first-innings, before Alex Davies (115) recorded a century to help the hosts reach 278-5 at the close.
The visitors were eventually bowled out for 395 – riches, indeed, when one considers that they were 177 for six at one stage - but the session had begun well for the home side when Taylor was caught at slip by McLaren off James Anderson for 18 in the third over of the day. However, Matt Salisbury and Abbott then added 43 runs in untroubled fashion before Salisbury, having made a composed 14, skied McLaren to Chanderpaul at mid-on.
In response, Lancashire's Davies had been aided in the task of restoring his side’s fortunes by Shivnarine Chanderpaul, with whom he put on 74 in 16 overs, after the home-side had initially been reduced to 69-3.
That partial recovery ended a few overs before tea when Chanderpaul was neatly stumped by Lewis McManus for 33 after being well beaten by a ball from Brad Taylor (1-59) which turned beyond the edge of his bat.
Davies then went on to share a stand of 90 for the fifth wicket with Vilas though, the latter batting impressively in the evening session before James Vince (1-13) claimed his prized wicket, whilst Ryan McLaren was unbeaten on 23 at stumps by which time Lancashire were 117 in arrears.
All of which represented a considerable improvement for the home side on the position in mid-afternoon when Steven Croft was leg before to Abbott (1-27) for one with the home side still 326 runs behind Hampshire’s total. Lancashire had earlier lost Rob Jones leg before to Gareth Berg (2-51) for two, and Luke Procter for eight when the left-hander lost his off stump to a Berg inswinger.
In the first session of the day Abbott was left three runs short of what would have been his maiden first-class hundred although his 134-ball innings had made a major contribution to Hampshire’s substantial first-innings total.
Words: Press Association
Hampshire endured a difficut three sessions on the penultimate day of their Specsavers County Championship match against Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford.
Having seen their batsmen compile a mammoth 595, thereby establishing a first-innings lead of 198, Lancashire's James Anderson then took three wickets and Kyle Jarvis one to reduce Hampshire to 50-5 at the close.
Dane Vilas, whose career-best 244 had played the major role in enabling his team to build a match-winning advantage, picked up from where he left off on day two.
The right-hander began the day on 76 and batted impressively alongside Ryan McLaren (107) who also reached three-figures, as the dup added 129 in the morning session.
The pair had extended their sixth-wicket partnership to 184 at lunch, thereby setting a new sixth-wicket record for Lancashire against Hampshire, eclipsing the 183 put on by Luke Sutton and Nathan Astle in 2006.
Gareth Berg (4-111), Brad Taylor (2-180) and Matt Salisbury (2-127) each claimed a wicket apiece in the afternoon session but Lancashire’s batsmen had built a first-innings lead of 124 by tea and still had two wickets in hand when the players came in with the home side on 519-8 and Vilas unbeaten on 194.
McLaren became the third Lancashire centurion shortly after the break but he was soon trapped LBW by Berg.
That ended McLaren’s 221-run partnership for the sixth wicket with Vilas and Hampshire enjoyed further success when Jordan Clark was LBW to Salisbury and Stephen Parry was caught at short leg by Jimmy Adams off the persevering Taylor.
Kyle Jarvis then fell to Berg and Vilas was the last man out, caught at short third man by Ervine off Salisbury.
Hampshire began their reply in less than ideal fashion as Jimmy Adams and Rille Rossouw departed for nought with successive deliveries and Kyle Jarvis bowled Michael Carberry.
Anderson soon had George Bailey LBW and the England seamer finished with figures of 8-4-5-3.
James Vince (29) and Sean Ervine (1*) tried to ensured that Lancashire made no further breakthroughs but Vince fell two overs from stumps for 29 when he drove McLaren to Rob Jones at short extra cover.
Words: Press Association
Hampshire fell to a difficult innings defeat on day four of their Specsavers County Championship match against Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford.
Hampshire were bowled out for 168 in their second innings that left Lancashire the victors by an innings and 30 runs.
Seventy minutes’ play was lost to rain in the first session of the day but the home bowlers still took two wickets to leave the visitors on the brink of defeat at lunch.
Hampshire were 81-7 when the players came in with Lewis McManus unbeaten on 12 and Gareth Berg on seven .
The visitors therefore needed a distinctly improbable 117 to make Lancashire bat again while the home side required three wickets to complete the win which eventually hoisted them up to second in the table, 14 points behind leaders Essex.
The first wicket to fall was that of nightwatchman, Matt Salisbury, who edged Jimmy Anderson’s fifth ball of the day to Dane Vilas at first slip. The rain set in a quarter of an hour later but soon after the 12.30 resumption Sean Ervine inside-edged Jarvis onto his leg stump and departed for 13.
In the afternoon session McLaren’s fourth leg before appeal in a few overs against Lewis McManus eventually elicited a favourable response from Paul Baldwin when the batsman was on 18 and in his next over the medium-quick bowler had Kyle Abbott caught down the leg side for 11 when he gloved a short ball to Alex Davies.
The game ended when Gareth Berg was also caught down the leg side off Jarvis for 49 having hit eight fours in his 71-ball innings and defied the Lancashire bowlers for 98 minutes. Anderson finished with 4-20 from 15 overs, while McLaren returned figures of 3-49 and McLaren, 3-41.