Wednesday, 15 June 2016

New wheels found for Gloucestershire bandwagon

Royal London One Day Cup: Gloucestershire beat Hampshire by 10 runs

In what essentially was a must-win game for the defending one day cup holders, the Shire managed to rediscover their mojo with an impressive return to form to defeat Hampshire at the Brightside ground.

We don't need to look too much further than the opening stand of 242 in 37 overs to understand where Gloucestershire's victory was engineered. Chris Dent continued his wonderful boom or bust season with 142 runs off only 116 balls. Dent has been in tremendous form all year, and now has 2 hundreds in the one day cup to go along with the same number of championship runs. The Jessop Tavern would love to see Dent go on and actually 'finish off' a season, and not let such a strong opening half of the campaign fade away.

At the other end Maxy Klinger did what Maxy Klinger does. 166 from 150 balls. Allowing Dent to dominate the opening stand and then making sure he was there to carry on the momentum. He also carried his bat. Of course he did. His 166* was the highest one day score of his career and Klinger now has a list A average of 49 across his career. For a man shortly about to celebrate his 36th birthday that is a fine achievement.

In reply Gloucestershire's bowlers did just enough, taking regular wickets whenever Hampshire threatened to really give the run chase a serious crack. Norwell, Miles, Benny the bowler and the Gourmet-Burger all took 2 wickets and went at just 6 runs an over. Miles actually proved the least expensive of the Gloucestershire bowlers, a welcome return to form after his recent pummelling in white ball cricket.

So Gloucestershire's cup defence is off and running. Is it too little, too late? With only 4 games remaining Glos sit 8th in the table, although only 4 points off top placed Glamorgan. You would have to figure that the Shire will need at the very least 3 wins from 4 matches to have any chance of finishing in the top 4.

Brilliantly, we now have a month off from the Royal London Cup before it returns at the end of July. It is back to a steady diet of T20 and Championship cricket for Glos.

Video highlights are available on the Sky Sports site

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