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Chris Wood stars as Hampshire win at Lord's
9:15am Monday 17th September 2012 in Sport
HAMPSHIRE Royals were crowned the kings of limited-overs cricket after a dramatic last-ball victory over the Warwickshire Bears in the Clydesdale Bank 40 final sealed a trophy double.
Once again, Basingstoke cricketer Chris Wood played his part, taking three wickets, but he did not have to bowl the final over as he did when Hampshire were crowned Twenty20 champions earlier this summer.
This time it was Kabir Ali who was the man under pressure as Warwickshire needed seven off the last six balls.
When Kabir bowled Ian Blackwell as he tried to hit a boundary, the equation changed to five from three balls.
The game swung again as Neil Carter, in his final game for Warwickshire, hit a sublime cover drive to bring the scores level. Having lost more wickets than the Royals it left the Bears needing a single for victory.
Amid unbearable tension, with many on the Warwickshire balcony unable to watch, Carter could not get a bat on the final delivery of the match.
Wicketkeeper Michael Bates did brilliantly to gather Kabir's full delivery and preserve the dot ball, the most celebrated dot ball of Hampshire's triumphant season as they won due to losing fewer wickets.
Earlier Hampshire, without the injured Dimitri Mascarenhas and Danny Briggs, who is on England duty, scored 244-5, the highest total in three years of CB40 finals.
It was a solid batting display led by captain Jimmy Adams (66) and Sean Ervine (57), who were supported well by opener Michael Carberry (35) and Simon Katich (35 not out).
In the Warwickshire reply Wood (3-39) took the most wickets and his first victim was Varun Chopra caught by Adams. He then went onto dismiss both Tim Ambrose and Rikki Clarke, but a magnificent 81 from Ian Bell got Warwickshire to the point where they needed 27 off the last three overs, with four wickets left.
However, Hampshire prevented them from reaching the target and the Bears ended up on 244-7.
Basingstoke-born seam bowler Wood said: “What an unbelievable end to a great season. This is going to be so hard to match.”
Hampshire skipper and man-of-the-match Jimmy Adams said: “It hasn’t sunk in. Kabir did a great job, the seamers held their nerve and we just snuck over.
“It’s been a great day’s cricket and we are fortunate to come out on the right side of it.”
The season is still not over for Wood and his Hampshire teammates as they head to the Twenty20 Champions League.
The team fly out to South Africa for that competition on Friday, October 5, with their first game four days later against New Zealand’s Auckland Aces.
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