Hampshire rebounded from a brace of defeats to Middlesex on the opening day of the county season with two wins against Sussex at the Aldridge Academy in Brighton, thanks to 7 wickets from 17-year-old newcomer Finty Trussler, and 50 runs from the bat of opener Ella Chandler.
Afterwards, Hampshire skipper Charlie Dean told CRICKETher:
“It was a tough start last weekend, but it is good to bounce back with a couple of really good wins.”
“It was a touch pitch to play on, and I think that showed from the scores that were set, but we managed to adapt to it slightly better and ended up on top.”
“Ella was brilliant – it’s good that she can bat through, and she’s really using that role at the top of the order.”
“Finty debuted against Middlesex last weekend – she’s a really exciting leg-spinner, and I think that showed with her figures.”
Having won the toss and elected to bat in the opening game, Chandler and Maia Bouchier got Hampshire off to a racing start. Vipers pro Tara Norris appears to have put on a yard of pace over the winter, but Chandler and Bouchier turned it to their advantage to hit her opening over for 9; and by the end of the powerplay Hampshire had reached 43-2, going at over 7 an over.
Hampshire couldn’t quite keep up that scoring rate, losing wickets periodically through the middle overs; but with Chandler playing the anchor role, batting through to the 18th over for 41 off 50 balls, they finished up on a respectable 114-8.
In reply, Sussex lost Georgia Adams early, bowled by Gemma Lane; but this brought Sarah Taylor to the crease. Taylor reached a characteristically effortless 28 off 24 balls, and looked to be threatening to take the game away from Hampshire, until she was bowled by Charlie Dean with one that kept low.
This opened things up for Trussler to come on and rip through the lower order, taking 4-12 from her 4 overs, including a magnificent low running catch at deep mid on from Western Storm pro Fi Morris to dismiss Millie Taylor – one of no less than four Taylors involved in the match – Millie, twin sister Mary, Southern Viper Charlotte and former England wicket keeper Sarah.
Sussex were eventually bowled out for just 67 from 18 overs, Hampshire winning by a massive 47 runs.
After winning her second toss of the day, Charlie Dean invited Sussex to keep batting, and they made a slightly better fist of things the second time around, reaching 90-5 – Sarah Taylor making 29* off 28, and Georgia Adams 29 off 44, as Trussler picked up another 3 wickets for 13 runs.
In the chase, Ella Chandler was soon into her stride again, but her innings was cut short after she was hit on the helmet by a bouncer that didn’t bounce from Tara Norris, leading her to sensibly retire not out for 9, due to the possibility of concussion.
This left it to Charlie Dean and Fi Morris to scamper home, which they did with 5 overs to spare, for the loss of just 1 wicket – Dean finishing 26* and Morris 47* off 41, to give Hampshire their second win of the day.