Eagles Blast hopes hit by Hawks

Hampshire Hawks v Essex Eagles – T20 Vitality Blast – The Ageas Bowl – Summary

Hampshire Hawks 171/8 (20.0 overs)

Essex Eagles 153 (19.2 overs)

Hampshire Hawks have won the toss and elected to bat

Hampshire Hawks won by 18 runs

Essex Eagles hopes of T20 Vitality Blast progress took a significant blow as they slipped to an eighteen run defeat against Hampshire Hawks on a warm afternoon at the Ageas Bowl.

The match was the first of a double-header for the home side who faced old adversaries, Sussex Sharks later in the day. Like Essex, with the odds against qualification staking up, only maximum points would do.

Skipper Jamie Vince and D’arcy Short compiled a 69-run opening wicket stand. And despite Aron Nijjar making the breakthrough – removing the latter for 30 0ff 22 balls aided by Sam Cook’s safe hands, then similarly sending Dawson back without scoring, the homes side – led from the front by Vince – continued to press on, the Sussex-born right-hander reaching 63 before Simon Harmer ended his resistance – Jimmy Neesham with the catch on the rope.

Colin de Grandhomme contributed 32 during his 29-minute stint at the crease, while wicketkeeper/batsman Lewis McManus chipped in with 25 – Cook overseeing the demise of both, the latter via a juggling catch by Michael Pepper on the boundary.

Cook finished with figures of 3/34, while Nijjar and Harmer took two apiece. Nevertheless, a competitive 171/8 offered Essex a conundrum – and so it proved.

Essex’s Sam Cook took 3/34 (Essex CCC Media)

The swift departure of Adam Wheater – caught by Vince off Chris Wood at mid-off – appeared to heighten the visitors’ fears. 

Tom Westley and Dan Lawrence put together 80 for the second wicket. The partnership was broken when skipper Westley was stumped by McManus after chasing a deceptive ball from Mason Crane.

Neesham’s stay was, quite literally, short – D’Arcy knocking the New Zealander over after he’d faced only five deliveries. Meanwhile, Lawrence reached his half-century off 37 balls, attempting to keep Essex on course, despite those around him falling cheaply.

Pepper slipped into that particular category – McManus with good glovework, to snaffle the 19-year-old, handing Dawson a wicket. And ten Doeschate followed, hooking Crane to Fuller in the deep – Essex 122/5.

Lawrence’s dismissal, without a further run being added – a flying catch from McManus from a delicious ball from Currie – signalled the turn of the tide. The England man had scored 60 off 45 balls and had largely held the Essex innings together. 

The procession continued – Paul Walter run out – Vince with the accurate arm – The contest now slipping away from Essex at an increasing rate.

Nijjar hit Wood for six but was gone a ball later. Essex required nineteen off the final over but lost Shane Snater to a straight delivery from Brad Wheel. And with Cook immediately following, the South African concluded the contest in Hampshire’s favour, orchestrating a hat-trick opportunity later in the evening in the process.

Essex Eagles return to T20 Vitality Blast action on Sunday, July 18 when Middlesex visit the Cloudfm County Ground (2:30pm).

Hampshire Hawks: JM Vince (Capt), DJM Short, JJ Weatherley, C de Grandhomme, LA Dawson, JK Fuller, LD McManus (WK), CP Wood, SW Currie, MS Crane, BTJ Wheal

Essex Eagles: T Westley, AJA Wheater (WK), DW Lawrence, MS Pepper, JDS Neesham, RN ten Doeschate, PI Walter, SR Harmer (Capt), ASS Nijjar, S Snater, SJ Cook

Umpires: IJ Gould and NL Bainton

Scorers: AC Mills and P Parkinson

Match Referee: TJ Boon

Brian Jeeves

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