Sunday, 6 September 2015

Glos upset Hampshire to secure rare knockout win

Gloucestershire 218 for 6 (Klinger 87, Jones 39*, Arafat 3-56) beat Hampshire 217 for 7 (Adams 97, Smith 50) by four wickets 

This was great. Unexpected, but great nonetheless. Glos booked an away quarter final against Yorkshire at Headingley but beating Hampshire by four wickets, due in large part to yet another fine knock of 87 from skipper Maxi Klinger. The big Aussie recovered from a dropped catch while on 0 from opposing skipper Jimmy Adams to anchor the chase and another violent Jack Taylor cameo got us over the line after Klinger was dismissed to leave the match in the balance.

Yet more August rain forced the reduction of the game to 34 overs per side and Hampshire managed a handy total based around Adams' 97 and a late flurry of runs from Will Smith, who took advantage of a bizarre decision by Glos to play but not bowl economical left arm spinner Tom Smith. His 50 from 25 balls helped Hampshire plunder 77 from the last 6 overs to set a challenging target of 218.

Glos began the chase with Adams failing to cling on to a sharp chance at cover from Klinger and the drop proved crucial as Dent, Roderick, O'Mish and Howell as fell cheaply to leave the boys 104-4 after 21 overs. Geraint Jones' arrival at the crease at least provided Klinger with decent support and they added 59 at a good clip, before the wily Yasir Arafat got the big wicket of Klinger while on 87. This put pressure on the new man Jack Taylor, with 55 still needed from under 6 overs. Fidel Edwards didn't do much to apply continued pressure however, as his next over cost 19 including 5 wides and 3 boundaries. The next over broke the back of the chase, as Taylor settled in nicely by hitting Arafat for two huge blows over cow corner in the course of 17 from the over. He then got out, but only 11 were needed and Geraint Jones won the match in style with another driven six off Arafat (see the end of the video below for his delighted celebration of the win).

A cracking victory achieved in difficult conditions and one that set us up nicely for the semi final against Yorkshire.

Video highlights below:

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