Match Report | Hampshire v Essex


Hampshire v Essex | Specsavers County Championship | Ageas Bowl
Hampshire team | Jimmy Adams (4), Joe Weatherley, Tom Alsop (9)+, James Vince (14), George Bailey (10)*, Sean Ervine (7), Liam Dawson (8), Ian Holland (22), Gareth Berg (13), Kyle Abbott (87), Fidel Edwards (82).

Essex team | Varun Chopra (6), Nick Browne (10), Tom Westley (21), Dan Lawrence (28), Ravi Bopara (25), Ryan ten Doeschate (27)*, James Foster (7) +, Simon Harmer (11), Neil Wagner (13), Jamie Porter (44), Sam Cook (16).

Umpires | Nigel Llong & Alexander Wharf

Toss | Uncontested and Essex exercised their right to bowl

Result | Essex won by 108 runs

Day Four | Match Highlights

Day Four Reaction | Chris Silverwood left speechless after remarkable win on Day Four


Day Four Reaction | Tendo pays tribute to his players after a hard fightback to remain unbeaten

Day Four | Close of Play Report

Unbelievable! That was the summing-up of those that witnessed the latest Essex victory.

Essex bowled Hampshire out for 76 in less than one session with 20 year-old Sam Cook returning career-best figures of 5 for 18 in only his third Championship match, giving Essex the victory by 108 runs.

It was an eighth win from the last nine matches and ninth win in total – and most unlikely – so far this summer in the Specsavers County Championship to underline the Champions status.

The home side had been left to score 185 runs to win and whilst that may have looked a modest challenge when they started their innings with 67 overs in which to meet the target, it quickly took on the appearance of a mountain to climb after Cook and his new ball partner Jamie Porter had captured the first four wickets inside 8 overs with only 12 runs on the board to pave the way for the hosts humiliating defeat.

Cook, who will be returning to Loughborough University shortly as he prepares for the final year of his History degree, started the home side’s tame capitulation when Joe Weatherley played across the line to be leg before. Then Porter had Tom Alsop caught by James Foster off an edge when the batsman pushed forward.

That was the first of three wickets to fall with the score on 12.

Jimmy Adams totally misjudged the line when facing Cook and was bowled for 1 and four balls later, Cook uprooted the off stump of George Bailey before the Australian had got off the mark.

James Vince and Sean Ervine doubled the score without looking at all confident as ball beat bat and a number of shouts for lbw kept the umpires on their toes before the shell-shocked hosts lost their fifth wicket with the score now on 25. It was Porter who broke the stand when Ervine attempted to play into the leg side and was trapped in the crease for 5 to give the bowler his 70th Championship wicket of the 2017.

Vince became victim number 4 for Cook, the batsman playing forward tentatively only to be struck on the pad and sent on his way having scored 8 out of a sorry score of 29 for 6.

Porter was given a rest to be replaced by Simon Harmer but yet again, the bowling change instigated by Ryan ten Doeschate came up trumps. With his first delivery, Harmer bowled his fellow off-spinner for 10 as Hampshire succumbed to 37 for 7.

Cook was also given a brief break reflecting on figures of 10-6-10-4 as Neil Wagner joined the attack.

Gareth Berg straight drove a ball from Harmer over the ropes to raise the total to 50 but then Wagner struck twice in successive overs. He had Berg caught at first slip by Varun Chopra for 9 and then Kyle Abbott steered the ball into the waiting hands of Nick Browne at cover point as the home side limped to 56 for 9.

The highest partnership of the innings came between the last wicket pair of Ian Holland and Fidel Edwards. They added 20 runs in 4 overs but the return of Cook ended their fun and the match when Edwards was pouched by Foster for 11 leaving Holland unbeaten on 16, the highest score of the innings.

Cook finished with the wonderful analysis of 11.4-6-18-5, Porter returned figures of 8-2-21-2, Wagner 6-0-17-2 and Harmer 4-0-20-1 as Hampshire experienced their lowest total since 1999.

Wagner had earlier in the day played a major part in setting up the victory with the bat. He and Foster added 82 for the 8th wicket after the overnight not out batsmen of ten Doeschate and Porter had been removed for 9 and 4 respectively in the first 2 overs of the morning.

Harmer scored 8 to leave Essex 272 for 8 and a lead of 94 but Wagner joined Foster to frustrate their opponents and raise Essex hopes and prospects. The pair carved, cut and drove their way along taking the total onto 354 before being parted when Wagner, having scored 44, picked out deep mid-wicket.

Foster was then trapped in front of his stumps for 47 by Abbott but Essex were now sensing the opportunity of a win that seemed so unlikely when they were dismissed for 76 conceding a first innings deficit of 178 runs.

But defeat is a word Essex have not heard this season in red ball cricket and once again, they showed their character and steely application to take the honours.

It was the first time since 1999 that Essex had won a match following-on when they beat Nottinghamshire. However, in 1992, Essex beat Hampshire at Bournemouth having followed on in that match and during a season in which they lifted the Championship crown.

Day Four | Lunch Report

A ninth wicket stand of 82 between James Foster and Neil Wagner has given Essex the opportunity to protect their unbeaten record this summer in the County Championship as the visitors were dismissed for 362. That has left Hampshire the task of scoring 185 in two sessions for victory, a challenge that looked so unlikely after their opponents were bowled out for 76 in their first innings to trail the home side by 178 runs.

Essex lost two wickets in the first two overs of the day with Ryan ten Doeschate trapped leg before by Fidel Edwards for 9 and nightwatchman Jamie Porter having his off stump uprooted by Kyle Abbott.

Simon Harmer scored 8 before he was caught behind off Ian Holland for 8 to leave the Champions 272 for 8 and a lead of 94 but Wagner and Foster posted an enterprising partnership to give their side hope.

New Zealand left-hander Wagner carved, cut and drove freely during his hour’s stay at the crease reaching 44 from 63 balls with 8 boundaries before he picked out Abbott on the deep mid-wicket boundary when facing off-spinner Liam Dawson.

That left the visitors 354 for 9 and Foster was the last wicket to fall. He too had driven and pulled freely and was within 3 runs of a half-century when he was trapped in the crease by Abbott who finished with 2 for 88 to add to his 6 wickets haul in the first innings.

Day Three | Match Highlights

Day Three Reaction | McGrath praises Lawrence after third ton of the season

Day Three | Close of Play Report

Dan Lawrence completed his third century of the summer before losing his wicket as Essex reached the close on 247 for 5, representing an overall lead of 69 runs to carry into the final day on Thursday.

Only 20 overs were possible but it was the spell late in the day that saw both Lawrence and Ravi Bopara, both not out overnight, being removed in a hostile spell of pace bowling by Fidel Edwards.

Just 6 overs were possible before lunch before bad light and then persistent drizzle kept the players off the field with Essex 226 for 3 and with any further play looking unlikely. However, a dramatic improvement late afternoon brought blue skies and the decision from the umpires to resume proceedings at 5:20pm with 12 overs to be played, giving the visitors a testing time against a new ball just two overs old.

Bopara departed for 57 to the third ball of the evening session when he edged a delivery to second slip with the total on 228 but Lawrence, 89 overnight, moved to his century with straight drive for 2 runs in an over that also brought him 10 runs two boundaries.

His innings had spanned 207 balls with a six and 12 other boundaries.

However, in his next over, the West Indian paceman produced a lifting delivery that Lawrence could only steer behind the wicket having made 101 out of 243 to give the bowler his second victim in 16 deliveries at a personal cost of 12 runs.

Jamie Porter was entrusted with night watchman duties and joined Ryan ten Doeschate to successfully negotiate the remaining 5 overs with the Essex captain resuming on 5 when play restarts, while Porter has a single.

Day Three | Lunch Report

Just 8 overs were possible this morning due to a combination of bad light and rain but on the little play that took place, Essex added 18 runs to their overnight score to reach an early lunch on 226 for 3.

That represents an overall lead of 48 runs thanks to an unbroken partnership between Dan Lawrence and Ravi Bopara who have so far posted 145 for the fourth wicket with Lawrence unbeaten on 89 and Bopara 55 not out.

Bad light prevented a resumption until 11:15am although the floodlights were on and the natural light indifferent as Liam Dawson and Ian Holland share bowling duties.

Lawrence collected the first run of the day steering Holland in to the leg side but after 6 overs, the second new ball became available and was taken three deliveries later by Fidel Edwards with the score 218 for 3.

Kyle Abbott, the destroyer of the Essex first innings was summoned up to partner Edwards and his first ball was driven through the covers by Lawrence and to the boundary taking the 20 year-old’s score onto 85.

Before the end of the over, Lawrence reached the boundary once more when he steered the ball to vacant third man but after just one more delivery, bad light brought the players off the field at 11.45 a.m. and minutes before it started to rain.

An early lunch was taken.

Day Two | Match Highlights

Day Two Reaction | Dan Lawrence leads the Essex fightback in Southampton

Day Two | Close of Play Report

Dan Lawrence and Ravi Bopara showed grit, determination and character to compose an unbeaten century fourth wicket partnership that earned Essex a 30 runs overall lead at the end of the second day of the match with Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl.

The visitors were 208 for 3 when bad light brought proceedings to a premature end with 8 overs remaining and, by then, Lawrence was on 78 and Bopara 52 with the partnership realising 127 runs to restore respectability to the County Champions.

An ignominious first innings effort by the visitors saw them bowled out for 76 with Kyle Abbott causing the damage with the highly impressive figures of 11-7- 20-6 that included three lbw victims whilst his other three scalps were all bowled.

It was the lowest Essex innings since the opening match of 2014 season when they collapsed to 94 all out against Derbyshire, the season after they had capitulated to 20 all out against Lancashire, their lowest total in first-class cricket.

With a lead of 178 on first innings, Hampshire captain George Bailey enforced the follow-on and when his bowlers accounted for the first three visiting batsmen with 81 on the board, Essex were facing the possibility of an embarrassing defeat.

Varun Chopra was caught behind for 5 facing Gareth Berg and then spinner Liam Dawson removed Nick Browne, lbw for 24, and Tom Westley caught and bowled for 36.

But Lawrence and Bopara halted a rapidly declining position with a gutsy approach. Both impressed with wristy strokeplay whilst pulling and driving comfortably and with few concerns.

Both batsmen treated themselves to a boundary apiece from the same Abbott over which brought up the 50 stand in 19 patient and vigilant overs. Lawrence, who looked in control from the moment he arrived in the middle, reached his half-century from 115 balls that included 3 fours and a straight driven 6 off Dawson, a shot that got him off the mark.

Meanwhile Bopara was proving a dependable ally and the duo wiped off the deficit before a boundary by Lawrence off Dawson took the visitors into credit.

Bopara’s deserved fifty arrived with a pull shot to the ropes against Fidel Edwards in deteriorating light and at the end of the following over with Abbott also back in the attack, umpires Alex Wharf and Nigel Llong brought the players off the field.

Earlier in the day, Abbott had wreaked havoc taking four wickets in 24 balls as the visitors lost their last five wickets for 43 runs in 12 overs having resumed on 33 for 5.

The South African fast bowler started with the wicket of Lawrence who was bowled for 11, then had Ryan ten Doeschate trapped in the crease for 26, the highest score of the innings. His remaining wickets were those of Simon Harmer and Neil Wagner in successive deliveries and both lbw victims leaving Ian Holland to gain another lbw verdict when James Foster was dismissed for 10.

Day Two | Tea Report

Essex enjoyed their best session yet with the bat in this match when they scored 96 runs after Lunch for the loss of two wickets to reach Tea on 118 for 3 in the match with Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl.

Dan Lawrence is unbeaten on 37 that includes one 6 and three 4’s while Ravi Bopara is 14 not out.

However, Essex still trail by 60 runs having been bowled out for 76 this morning.

Nick Browne and Tom Westley resumed the post-Lunch session on 22 for 1 and both batsman soon found the boundary against Kyle Abbott and Ian Holland.

Liam Dawson was called into the attack in the 20th over, it was the first time in the match that Hampshire had turned to spin and Westley welcomed the initiative by executing a delightful drive that raced to the boundary to bring the total to 50.

Four runs later, Browne whom had applied himself well and with authority to reach 24, played back when facing Dawson and became the 8th leg before wicket victim of the game.

Dan Lawrence joined Westley who was producing a series of pleasing drives particularly on his favoured leg side. The new arrival in the middle launched his innings with a straight drive off Dawson that cleared the ropes as he and Westley played in an uncomplicated manner to eschew possible demise.

However, having scored 36 out of the 81 runs on the board, Westley straight drove a return catch to Dawson to end an innings spanning 113 minutes and 86 balls with 7 fours.

Bopara played watchfully during the remaining hour before Tea, to compose an unbroken 37 run stand with Lawrence, who struck two boundaries against Joe Weatherley when he sent down the final over before tea.

Day Two | Lunch Report

Essex were dismissed for just 76 on the second morning of their County Championship match with Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl and having been invited to follow-on with a first innings deficit of 178 runs, they were 22 for 1 at lunch.

Varun Chopra was the man to go having equalled his first innings score of 5 when he edged Gareth Berg behind the wicket with the total on 11 in the sixth over. Nick Browne was unbeaten on 7 and Tom Westley was 10 not out at the break.

The Essex first innings total was their lowest total in Championship cricket since 2014 when they were dismissed for 94 by Derbyshire, a year after Lancashire had shot them out for 20 at Chelmsford.

It was very much a case of ‘After the Lord Mayor’s Show’ for the visitors who clinched the County title last week only to fail dismally with the bat first time around just a few days later.

Kyle Abbott was the destroyer-in-chief as a series of Essex batsmen came and went with alarming regularity and none with the aid of a dismissal by a fielder with five being bowled and the other five being adjudged leg before wicket.

Abbott took four wickets in 24 balls this morning to end with the staggering figures of 11-7-20-6, testimony to his outstanding performance of consistent probing line and length.

Resuming on 33 for 5, the visitors lost their remaining five wickets inside 12 overs starting with the demise of Dan Lawrence for 11 to the tenth delivery of the day. The batsman went forward and had his off stump uprooted by Abbott to leave Essex 40 for 6.

James Foster joined Ryan ten Doeschate in a stand that saw the addition of 29 runs – the highest of the innings with the Essex skipper taking three boundaries in one over off Abbott.

However, the bowler was to have the final say. Ten Doeschate had reached 26 and comfortably the highest individual score of the innings when Abbott struck the back pad to leave Essex 69 for 7.

Six runs later, two wickets fell to successive Abbott deliveries with Simon Harmer and Neil Wagner both lbw casualties for 4 and 0 respectively.

Foster became only the third Essex batsman to reach double figures but then, stepped out of his crease to play forward against Ian Holland to become the fifth lbw verdict and complete the visitors misery.

Day Two | Match Highlights

Day One Reaction | Chris Silverwood reflects on a mixed opening day at the Ageas Bowl

Day One | Close of Play Report

Jamie Porter and Simon Harmer both continued their season of destruction with 4 and 3 wickets hauls respectively, as Hampshire were bowled out for 254 but Essex were left reeling at 33 for 5 when bad light brought a premature close to the opening day of the Specsavers County Championship clash at the Ageas Bowl.

A clatter of wickets due to an incisive burst of bowling caused consternation amongst the Essex batting as visitors top-order struggled against the hosts new ball attack. Kyle Abbott accounted for both openers before Fidel Edwards removed Tom Westley with only 12 runs on the board. Abbott knocked back the off stump of Nick Browne who had still to get off the mark and the bowler followed up by bowling Varun Chopra for 5. Edwards trapped Westley in front of his stumps for 6 and despite a period of relief from their woes, the problems mounted before the end of a day cut short by three overs.

Dan Lawrence and Ravi Bopara dug in for 53 minutes before the latter was bowled by Gareth Berg for 7 with the score on 26 and without addition, night watchman Sam Cook was bowled by a full pitched delivery from Edwards to leave the visitors in turmoil at 26 for 5.

Lawrence (8 not out) and Ryan ten Doeschate (6 not out) survived another over before the umpires decided the light was not acceptable, to the visitors welcome relief.

Hampshire were indebted to half-centuries from George Bailey and James Vince in what now appears to be a challenging total with Essex needing some firm resolution from their remaining batsmen if they are to at least avoid the follow-on.

Continuing their personal battle to end the season as Essex bowling top-dog, Porter and Harmer added to their impressive tally of victims with pace man Porter taking his total for the Championship season to 68, two more than off-spinner Harmer.

Porter’s new ball partner Sam Cook bagged the first wicket of the match after an uncontested toss when Jimmy Adams moved across his stumps and was struck on the pads without a run on the board.

Porter then moved into action trapping Joe Weatherley in the crease for 8 before ending a 71 runs stand between Tom Alsop and James Vince when Alsop shouldered arms and was bowled for 34.

At lunch, Hampshire were 104 for 3 and had carried the score onto 121 when Cook struck again when he ended Vince’s 2 hour stay for 60 by finding the edge to give James Foster a catch.

Harmer grabbed his first wicket of the game with the assistance of Chopra’s superb catch low down at first slip when he removed Sean Ervine before Porter bowled Liam Dawson to leave the hosts 187 for 6.

Bailey though was proving a tough opponent completing a 79 ball half-century with his ninth boundary. He found allies in Ian Holland and Gareth Berg with whom 27 and 29 runs respectively were added but harmer was to claim both batsmen.

Holland chopped a ball onto his stumps when attempting to cut and Berg pushed outside off and into the gloves of Foster to leave Hampshire 243 for 8.

Abbott became Porter’s fourth wicket before bailey, seeking 11 runs for his century but with only the wicket of Edwards remaining, holed out to wide long on to give Neil Wagner his first wicket.

Porter ended with 4 for 53, Harmer 3 for 47, Cook 2 for 84 and Wagner 1 for 37 but then followed the collapse of the batting to leave Hampshire with bragging rights after day one.

Day One | Tea Report

Hampshire added 140 runs to their Lunch score while losing four wickets to arrive at the Tea interval on 243 for 8 thanks to a fine innings by George Bailey who underpinned their performance with 85 not out.

Three wickets for Simon Harmer and one each for Jamie Porter and Sam Cook provided a satisfactory session of play for the visitors who are on the cusp of a third bowling point.

James Vince and Bailey took up the cudgels upon the resumption with Porter and Cook conceding boundaries in their opening overs. It was Cook though that was to end Vince’s 2 hour innings worth 60 when the bowler found the edge to have the batsman caught by James Foster to leave the hosts, who had been put into bat, 121 for 4.

That gave Cook figures of 2 for 51 at that point.

On joining the attack, Harmer was immediately amongst the wickets when, with his fourth delivery of the afternoon, he had Sean Ervine (11) superbly caught low down by Varun Chopra at slip to leave Hampshire 144 for 5.

Bailey brought up his half-century from 79 balls when he collected the ninth boundary of his innings – this one when facing Ravi Bopara.

However Porter’s relentless and successful pursuit of wickets continued when Liam Dawson became the pace bowler’s third wicket of the game and taking his total for the season to 67 in the Championship.

Dawson had scored a watchful 8 out of 43 run stand with Bailey for the sixth wicket that took the score onto 187 when Porter was re-introduced into the attack and ended the stand with the last ball of the opening over of a new spell. The telling delivery clipped the off bail to leave the home side 187 for 6.

Harmer chasing Porter for the title of Essex’s most successful bowler in the Championship collected his second of the innings and scalp number 65 for the summer in the competition, when Ian Holland became his latest victim. Having scored 11, the batsman attempted to cut, but only succeeded in chopping the ball onto his stumps.

Harmer was not yet done for the afternoon. In the final over before Tea, he had Gareth Berg caught by James Foster for 14 to conclude the session with figures of 3 for 39. Porter has 3 for 50 and Cook 2 for 84.

Day One | Lunch Report

Jamie Porter took another two wickets taking his tally for the season to 66 in the County Championship as Hampshire reached 103 for 3 on the opening morning of their Specsavers County Championship clash with Champions Essex at The Ageas Bowl.

Porter struck for the first time in his third over when he gained the leg before verdict against Joe Weatherley when the opener moved across his stumps to be dismissed for 8.

By then, Sam Cook had already accounted for Jimmy Adams when the experienced left-hander moved back across his stumps in the second over of the game and departed lbw without a run on the board.

Weatherley’s demise left the home side 14 for 2 but they were revived by a stand of 71 between James Vince and Tom Alsop. Both batsmen took on the bowlers with Vince soon into his stride with a series of elegant strokes.

Alsop too was impressive with his wristy stroke play as the duo as Essex skipper Ryan ten Doeschate rotated his attack. One bowling change came after Cook conceded 15 runs in one over with Vince collecting three boundaries , the first of which brought up the 50 and by the end of the over, the third wicket partnership had realised a 50 runs stand in just 9 overs.

Cook was taken out of the attack to be replaced by Neil Wagner operating by now with Simon Harmer at the pavilion End but the batsmen grew in authority until the return of Porter brought an end to their effective liaison.

The paceman took over from Harmer and with the fourth delivery of his new spell, persuaded Alsop, who had made 34 out of 85, to shoulder arms to a ball that was slanted across the left-hander and took out off stump.

Vince continued to play delightfully reaching his half-century from 65 balls with nine boundaries and was unbeaten on 52 at lunch with George Bailey 9 not out.

At the break, Porter had figures of 8-2-28-2, Cook 10-2-43-1, Wagner 5-0-16-0, Harmer 4-1-14-0 and Ravi Bopara 1-0-2-0.