Sparsholt get off the mark

Gosport Borough (185 all out) lost to Sparsholt (259 for 6) by 74 runs

SPARSHOLT beat Gosport by 74 runs to record their first win of the season - and only their second ever under the leadership of Ian Stuart.

Sparsholt were particularly happy to secure a maximum-point victory over relegation rivals Gosport on a difficult Privett Park wicket.

As usual Tim Richings (40) got Sparsholt off to a positive start, displaying his trademark regal cover drives - until he was sensationally caught one-handed by the diving Cleaver off the bowling of North.

The game hung in the balance at the halfway point with Sparsholt 87 for 2. However, a dynamic 142-run third wicket partnership between ex-Hampshire star James Schofield and Australian overseas sensation Ryan Mannix then put the visitors in charge.

Mannix was at his destructive best, smashing 69 from 53 balls, including two monster sixes into the neighbouring housing estate.

Schofield, not to be outdone by his new-ball partner, caressed and timed his way to an elegant 76 from just 79 balls. Sparsholt's innings closed on 259 for 6.

In response Gosport made a promising start, accumulating 50 for the first wicket despite some probing bowling from the super-fit Schofield and Mannix.

Mannix eventually removed Wateridge for 18, but Gosport continued to score quickly.

Skipper Ian Stuart had to leave the field with a badly dislocated finger, but Sparsholt adapted well to his absence.

Mike Ball (2-33) picked up two quick wickets, most importantly Queenslander Rob Hale, who had just compiled a classy maiden SPCL half century.

At the other end, leggie Oliver Kelly picked up 3 for 35 to leave Gosport all out for 185.

Sparsholt III beat Medstead by 104 runs in Hampshire Division 3 North.

Sparsholt batted first on a slow pitch, and opener David Coulthard, with 84 (6x4), soon put his side in pole position!

He was supported by David Gough (32) and young Lewis Dunford (14) as Sparsholt finished on 165 for 7. Legg, Kirkwood and Curram took two wickets each for the visitors.

In reply Medstead found run-scoring difficult on a drying wicket as Sparsholt's pace bowlers went through their order.

Simon Herridge (3-12) was supported by Robert Carslake, Tony Dunford and the evergreen Huw Evans, all took two wickets each.

Medstead were all out for 61 in the 32nd over.