BASINGSTOKE and North Hants maintained their perfect start to the season as they made it four wins on the trot, with a 19-run victory at Hursley Park in the Southern League Division One.
After early morning thunderstorms threatened to cancel the game, by the start time it was a nice sunny afternoon and the visitors won the toss and decided to bat.
The Bountymen made two changes to the side which won at Bournemouth the week before, with captain Chris Froud returning to open the innings and Dean Nurse replaced the unavailable Craig Williamson.
Basingstoke got off to a steady start, thanks to Froud (27) and Andy Fulton (8), which was helped by a couple of dropped catches from Mo Abdurahman.
However, both openers were back in the pavilion with 47 on the board after 11 overs.
Danny Coombs (35) and Dean Nurse (10) kept the run-rate going and by the mid-point of the Basingstoke innings they were 100-4.
It was left to Andy Niblett and Martyn James to build a score the Bountymen could defend, as the pair shared a fifth wicket partnership worth 97.
Niblett was then cruelly run out as bowler Oli Green deflected a drive from James onto the stumps to end his excellent knock of 68 from 67 balls which included five fours and three sixes.
As the Bountymen’s innings entered the final overs, James (73) and Thankachan (20) continued the onslaught to the end as the visitors finished on 255-6 from their 50 overs.
James in total faced 80 balls and found the boundary rope twice and cleared it three times, Thankachan not to be out done hit the biggest six of the day.
James and fellow opening bowler Connor made sure the Hursley reply got off to a slow start as the home side only reached 22 in their first 10 overs.
As expected wickets were hard to come by for the visitors, but they kept the runs down, leaving the home side with over 100 to get off their final 10 overs.
Matt Mettam (63) and Gary Storey (53) tried to get their side back into the game and two sixes in the final over of the day bowled by Niblett from Martin Ford and Nick Wheeler helped Hursley to 236-5 in the end.
Back at May’s Bounty, Basingstoke’s second XI were unable to record their fourth win on the trot, as they lost to visiting Waterlooville by three wickets.
Youngster Bradley Neal top scored with an unbeaten 50 off 38 balls which included three fours and three sixes.
Opener Richard Vinn (44) was the next highest scorer, as Basingstoke were bowled out for 196 in the 48th over.
Waterlooville’s victory was built around a second wicket partnership worth 90 between James Scutt (46) and Jon Hudson (31) and then an unbeaten 45 from Sam Hillman saw them home.
Wicket-keeper Neal made three catches in the Waterlooville innings and Basingstoke leading wicket taker was Rakitha Perera (4-22).