Hampshire Cricket History

Read All About It
September 30, 2019, 10:33 am
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There is a very good two-page written review of Hampshire’s season plus photos and all the stats (averages, tables, matches etc) in today’s copy of the Pompey News. Not only that, but you can read how on Saturday, the football team overcame the threat of mighty Bolton Wanderers, Nat Lofthouse and all.

Generation ?
September 29, 2019, 1:41 pm
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There is a significant group of Hampshire cricketers in their early 20s who need to start making a real contribution if Hampshire are to realise the ambition of coach Adi Birrell to “create a bit of history” (Cricket Paper this week) by winning the County Championship.

If Lyon (currently age 31) joins then we can probably assume that the core of Hampshire’s side next year – with ages on 1 April 2020 – will be him, plus Vince (29); Abbott (32); Barker (33); Dawson (30); Edwards (38) and Northeast (30), to which seven must be added either Alsop (24) or McManus (25) as wicketkeeper.

That leaves three places to fill, including both opening batsmen.

Fuller (30); Holland (29); Stevenson (28) and Wood (29) are four older players who need to establish themselves in some format pretty soon. Wood has done so in white-ball cricket over the years, but his two competitions will be less significant next year. Holland had a brief run of good scores opening the batting, but scored just 30 in his last six innings.

Which brings me to the players in their early 20s, some of whom have been around a few years now:

Came (21, first-class debut 2019); Crane (23, 2015); Donald (23, 2014); Organ (20, 2017); Soames (24, 2018); Taylor (23, 2013); Weatherley (23, 2016); Wheal (23, 2015). There is also Tom Scriven who appears in Playfair and on the team’s autograph sheet but seems to have vanished in recent weeks.

If Hampshire are very lucky their main players will escape injury, but if they don’t, are the reserves good enough to help them win the title? Organ and Donald have shown real promise but others are not making progress and in a couple of cases have been hampered by frequent injuries. Are there other signings looming?

And the Winner is …
September 28, 2019, 7:31 am
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Maybe somebody can update us on the players (etc) who won the real awards last night? In the meantime here are my nominations for the Blog Awards of 2019 – join in, add your own:

The easy bits (maybe?): Player of the Year: Kyle Abbott; Batsman of the Year: Sam Northeast; Bowler of the Year: Kyle Abbott.


Overseas Player of the Year: Aiden Markram

White Ball Player of the Year: Liam Dawson

Uncapped Player of the Year: Keith Barker

Promising Nipper of the Year: Shared by Aneurin Donald & Felix Organ

Coach of the Year: Jimmy Adams (Honourable mentions for Adi Birrell & Alfonso Thomas)

Concussion Sub of the Year: Harry Came (23*, beating Ian Holland’s first-ball ‘duck’)

Opening batsman of the Year: (Choice of Vince, Soames, Weatherley, Organ, Holland?)

Event of the Year: Newclose IOW

Disappointment of the Year: Lord’s, two days after Newclose

Best decision of the year: Rilee goes T20


If it is …
September 27, 2019, 4:04 pm
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Wickets what win it (see previous post) consider this:

Fidel Edwards will be 38 at the start of next season. In 2019, he took 48 Championship wickets at 25.83

Keith Barker will be 33. He took 37 at 26.59

Kyle Abbott will be 32 (33 in June). He took 71 at 15.73

Between them their 156 wickets constitute exactly 75% of all Championship wickets taken by bowlers. Next came Liam Dawson with 10 at 53.80, although the best average was Felix Organ with 8 at 15.62.

Fuller took 9 at 33.56; Berg 9 at 40.11; Holland 9 at 75.6; Crane 5 at 107.80, and Weatherley & Stevenson one each

Catching? In Division One, 21 non-wicketkeepers held 10 or more catches in 2019, but none were from Hampshire.

Looking Back
September 27, 2019, 3:14 pm
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I hope you guys will all enjoy a happy winter but I’ll not disappear. To start with (inviting contributions) I’ll look at some summary points, so firstly here is the FINAL list of wickets falling on various grounds. It now includes outgrounds and is expressed as the average number of wickets falling in a day where anything 10 or above ensures a result in four rain-free days. Sometimes, as for Hampshire at Welbeck that didn’t happen and of course results can be obtained with fewer wickets (close with just 21 at Taunton yesterday). Everything has been rounded up or down to half a decimal point.

TAUNTON average of 13.5 wkts per day

CHELMSFORD average of 13.0 wkts per day

AGEAS BOWL average of 10.5 wkts per day

HEADINGLEY average of 9.5 wkts per day

CANTERBURY average of 9.0 wkts per day

TRENT BRIDGE average of 9.0 wkts per day

EDGBASTON average of 9.0 wkts per day

OVAL average of 9.0 wkts per day

Those last four are in rank order (e.g. Canterbury actually 9.2; Oval 8.98). It’s interesting how close the order is to some final positions. Alistair Cook with 913 runs at 45.65 was the only batsman from either of the top two sides to pass 800 runs, or average above 40. It’s wickets what wins it.


Guildford (2 matches) 13.5; Welbeck 12.5; Scarborough (2 matches) 11.0; York 10.5; Tunbridge Wells 10.5; Newclose 10.0 – all sufficient to produce results.

They Think It’s All Over
September 26, 2019, 3:27 pm
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But not quite. (4.25) I’ve given up doing everything I was doing because things are a bit bonkers at Taunton. I still think Essex will be Champions and might even win the game as they start their second innings and here’s an awkward thought: we’ve had 130 overs, so it’s lunch on day two and the ball is turning and bouncing. It’s exciting but with Somerset on a final warning about their pitches …

(Talking of spinners, one of the arguments in favour of signing Lyon was that Australia have no cricket in our 2020 summer. Except they do; apparently they’re due here in July to play 50 and 20 over matches v England.)

So …
September 26, 2019, 10:16 am
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11am and that’s Hampshire’s season over. Sam Northeast got 1,000 first-class runs but not in the Championship, and Kyle Abbott didn’t get to equal or overhaul the 72 wickets by Marshall in 1990.

Glamorgan’s match is also washed out so Northants and Gloucs are promoted, while Yorkshire are not yet playing. They have two batting points, so if they could conjure a victory this afternoon (18 in total) they would finish level with Hampshire on points but ahead on six wins to five – in which case we would be fourth for the first time in our history.

Meanwhile the title saga drags on (inspection at 11.30) but is there any point? Should umpires be allowed to consign some matches to a merciful conclusion?

The final season in which English (& Welsh) cricket’s major domestic competitions are all contested by the 18 first-class counties comes to a watery end. The skies are crying.

250 the target
September 25, 2019, 1:26 pm
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They might need fewer points, but (Weds afternoon) I reckon 250 with two batting points and five for the draw will ensure Hampshire finish third

That would give them 178 points and Kent would be on 174. The extra four are to keep Yorkshire at bay. Their match at Edgbaston is off again today and since Warwicks can’t catch Yorks they might be willing to set up a run chase tomorrow.

So let’s imagine that Yorks bat on to around 330 and declare setting Warwicks 331 to win, followed by two forfeits. If Yorkshire were to win they would take 19 points (3 for batting) and end on 177. 

Lots of ‘ifs & buts’, but if Yorkshire can’t/don’t win and Canterbury is a draw, then Kent can only take eight points now, leaving them on 174. Even if Hampshire fail to reach 200, eight points for them leaves them on 176

105 Not Out!
September 25, 2019, 8:34 am
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We haven’t heard from John Manners this year but I think he is still with us, in which case today is birthday number 105 – the first time a first-class cricketer anywhere in the world has reached that grand total. It’s appropriate too that his one Championship century for Hampshire was at Canterbury in 1947

Manners & Cannings

A few years ago, John (left) with Vic Cannings

Weather or Not?
September 24, 2019, 6:36 pm
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Last week the weather was pretty fine, although there were problems with light (or dark) late afternoon, but are we just unlucky this week that the nasty weather looks like wrecking some important or interesting matches. Should we be playing Championship matches in the fourth week of September?

The first time we played this late in the season was on the first day of week four in 1996 v Nottinghamshire at Southampton, but it wasn’t quite this late since 22nd was the final day. In 2005 we played Notts again, at the Rose Bowl from 21-24 September. They came as Champions, we were runners-up and we stuffed them, posting our highest ever total. Then in 2008 we met them again, this time at Trent Bridge from 24-27 September, and our victory prevented them winning the title again. 18-year-old Liam Dawson scored his debut century – still the only 18-year-old to score a first-class century for the county.

We did not play that late from 2010-2012 but from 2013 we have always played in the fourth week. Who knows what might happen next year.