HAMPSHIRE HAWKS (206-7) BEAT WARWICKSHIRE BEARS (166) BY 40 RUNS
There may yet be a County Championship and Friends Provident Trophy double for Hampshire this season.
Hampshire completed three of the most memorable days under Shane Warne's captaincy at The Rose Bowl yesterday by securing a second Lord's final in three years with a 40-run win against the Warwickshire Bears.
Warne will no doubt be plotting a league and cup double during his two-week break, which he began today after leading Hampshire to two vital wins this week.
His leadership and outrageous skill in taking 11-133 against Durham to restore Hampshire's Championship hopes was exceptional.
And yesterday more astute captaincy and inspirational bowling against the Warwickshire Bears won him his first semi-final in a Hampshire shirt.
But this was not just about Warne, it was an excellent all-round team performance that booked Hampshire a date with Durham at Lord's on August 18.
Dimitri Mascarenhas and Nic Pothas continued their excellent seasons, Stuart Clark delivered yet again and Sean Ervine bowled the over that turned the match firmly in the Hawks' favour.
But there was no better candidate for man of the match than John Crawley, who has won all six Lord's finals he has played in and showed he is still a man for the big occasion with a fluent 65 (89 balls) and two catches that defied his age.
The 35-year-old was replaced by Kevin Pietersen when the England batsman made his last FP Trophy appearance, against Glamorgan at Swansea earlier this month.
But Crawley looked the more accomplished during the pair's 47-run stand for the third wicket.
He looked as good as he has done all season, stroking textbook fours off his legs and through extra cover, while Pietersen's aggression did not come off against the county that once rejected him as an off-spinning trialist.
The England man holed out to mid-off against the medium pace of Tim Groenewald, a fellow Maritzburg College old boy.
And just when calm was needed, Crawley and Ervine were run out returning for second runs within three overs of each other.
Warne's decision to promote Chris Tremlett to number six following the fast bowler's unbeaten 62 against Durham in the Championship on Sunday seemed to unsettle Hampshire more than Warwickshire.
It was another example of Warne doing the unexpected but Tremlett was brilliantly stumped down the leg side by Tim Ambrose.
A total of 250 looked realistic when Crawley and Pietersen were together but the loss of four wickets for 45 runs in 13 overs changed that.
Warwickshire's fielding and clever bowling on a slow wicket reduced Hampshire's momentum but Pothas accumulated 40 runs from 49 balls to shepherd the Hawks to 206-7.
The Hampshire wicketkeeper received valuable support from Dimitri Mascarenhas and the pair put on 54 for the seventh wicket - the highest partnership of the match.
But Hampshire were still the underdogs, even after Crawley's brilliance at backward point helped take two early wickets.
Ian Westwood, fortunate to have kept his place ahead of Ian Bell, was plucked left-handed by an outstretched Crawley at backward point, while Darren Maddy cut a short ball from Clark powerfully to the 35-year-old.
Crawley held on two-handed to the low chance, while the left-handed Jim Troughton fell into another trap, lofting a well-flighted Warne delivery straight to Michael Carberry at long on.
Kumar Sangakkara remained the key wicket. He had only played against Warne once before in a one-day match - for Sri Lanka in an ICC Champions Trophy semi-final win against Australia in Colombo five years ago.
They met at Test level more recently in 2004, when Warne twice took his wicket. Warne, who won the toss yesterday, thought he had Sangakkara again in the 31st over - only for Ervine to put down the chance at slip.
Ervine, the man of the match for his centuries in the semi-final and final of the C&G Trophy two years ago, made amends with the ball in the next over.
Sangakkara pulled a long hop straight to mid-wicket, where substitute fielder Greg Lamb held on two-handed while diving forward.
In the same over, Ervine's golden arm accounted for Alex Loudon, who had described yesterday's encounter as "a grudge match".
Warwickshire never recovered.
Their strength is their long batting order but against a well-balanced Hampshire bowling attack that favours comparably with any in the country, they put up little resistance before being dismissed for 166 with 6.3 overs remaining.
Warne's introduction triggered the loss of seven wickets for 68 runs in 17 overs as Hampshire won their fourth successive one-day match against Warwickshire since losing the 2000 Natwest Trophy semi-final at Edgbaston.
Other than Ambrose (41 off 51 balls), who was also excellent with the gloves, no-one else stood in the way of Hampshire and a second Lord's final in three years, which was confirmed when Clark signed off with wickets in his last two overs.
CARBERRY c Ambrose b Daggett 13 (22 balls)
CRAWLEY run out 65 (89)
LUMB c Ambrose b Steyn 4 (5)
PIETERSEN c Maddy b Groenewald 18 (31)
ERVINE run out 12 (34)
TREMLETT st Ambrose b Loudon 12 (17)
POTHAS 40* (49)
MASCARENHAS b Steyn 26 (43)
WARNE 10* (10)
EXTRAS 6 (5w 1lb)
TOTAL 206-7 (50 overs)
Fall of wickets: 32 Carberry (8th), 42 Lumb (11th), 89 Pietersen (22nd), 113 Crawley (28th), 124 Ervine (31st), 134 Tremlett (35th), 188 Mascarenhas (47th)
Warwickshire bowling: Steyn 9-0-31-2, Daggett 10-2-38-1, Streak 8-0-28-0, Groenewald 8-0-46-1, Loudon 10-0-42-1, Maddy 5-1-20-0
WESTWOOD c Crawley b Tremlett 8 (23)
MADDY c Crawley b Clark 16 (20)
SANGAKKARA c sub b Ervine 44 (75)
TROTT lbw b Mascarenhas 11 (27)
TROUGHTON c Carberry b Warne 18 (26)
AMBROSE b Clark 41 (51)
LOUDON b Ervine 1 (3)
STREAK lbw b Warne 1 (11)
GROENEWALD c Ervine b Mascarenhas 4 (12)
STEYN b Clark 14 (10)
DAGGETT 1* (4)
EXTRAS 7 (2nb 3w 2lb)
TOTAL 166 (43.3 overs)
Fall of wickets: 15 Westwood (5th over), 28 Maddy (8th), 61 Trott (19th), 98 Troughton (27th), 110 Sangakkara (32nd), 112 Loudon (32nd), 119 Streak (35th), 135 Groenewald (39th), 157 Steyn (42nd), 166 Ambrose (44th)
Hampshire bolwing: Tremlett 7-1-27-1, Clark 9.3-1-38-3, Mascarenhas 8-0-30-2, Udal 4-0-19-0, Warne 10-0-37-2, Ervine 5-0-13-2