Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove reflected on the first day of the Ageas Bowl’s second Test and declared: “This is our biggest milestone.”

England closed the first day of the third Test against India on 247-2 after captain Alastair Cook returned to form with 95 and Gary Ballance hit his second century of the series in front of a sun-kissed crowd of 15,651.

Bransgrove admitted it was the best day of his chairmanship “I can remember”, before adding: “It’s the biggest milestone for us given what we are and what we aspire to.

“A good crowd, a good day for England, a good-ish track that should get faster as the game goes on, it'll offer us a good cricket match I think.

“I feel proud and delighted. The ground’s looked brilliant in good weather and the crowd’s been well behaved crowd with no incidents as far as I know.

“It was a perfect day's cricket for me. Days like this provide an adrenaline rush that you can’t get in an office or an ordinary business.

“Having a day like this every so often is like a golfer having a hole in one. It tends to make it all worthwhile.”