KENT left-hander Alex Blake smashed back-to-back sixes to snatch a thrilling two-wicket win over Hampshire with one delivery remaining in the Vitality Blast.

Kent had needed 16 from the final over at the Ageas Bowl, bowled by Chris Wood, who initially restricted Blake to a pair of twos from the first three deliveries.

But with the game seemingly slipping away Blake responded with successive sixes to end the contest and send the Spitfires top of the fledgling South Group table with a 100 per cent record.

Blake finished unbeaten on 57 from 38 balls after arriving at the crease with his side 41 for four in pursuit of Hampshire’s 146-8. Captain James Vince top-scored for Hampshire with 51.

Four years ago, Blake left the Ageas Bowl crowd open-mouthed as he crashed 71 in 30 balls, having arrived at the crease at 70 for five chasing 178.

After Hampshire had scored a par 145 from their overs, Kent lost stand-in captain Daniel Bell-Drummond to the fifth ball of the reply when he chopped Wood behind.

Ollie Robinson clubbed Liam Dawson over the midwicket boundary but only picked out Aneurin Donald when attempting an action replay.

The Spitfires were then stunned at 32 for three when overseas star Mohammad Nabi mistimed a pull off Kyle Abbott to James Vince at mid-off.

Abbott, who only played three times in last season’s Blast, picked up a quick-fire second when Zak Crawley leading edged to mid-on.

The slide continued when Sean Dickson was stumped off Mason Crane, although Blake powered the leg-spinner for two straight sixes to keep the run-rate manageable.

At the other end, Dawson pinned Jordan Cox lbw, Abbott bowled Adam Milne, Chris Morris caught and bowled Hardus Vijoen but Blake was still there.

And with 16 needed from the last overs Hampshire were still favourites.

But two twos and a pair of big straight sixes sent Blake running around in delight.

Earlier, Hampshire elected to bat first in front of the Ageas Bowl’s highest domestic crowd for two years, with around 10,000 packing out the ground.

They were not treated to a rapid start from Rilee Rossouw and Donald as the former was dropped at midwicket.

Donald did smash Hampshire’s first maximum of the competition, over fine leg, but departed next ball when he skied straight up in the air before Rossouw nicked off.

Vince drove and then cut his first two deliveries to the boundary.

The Hampshire skipper then dispatched two sixes off an Imran Qayyum over as he reached a 29th T20 fifty in 33-balls.

But two balls later he handed Nabi a caught and bowled which the hosts failed to recover from.

Fred Klaassen, who dismissed James Fuller and Sam Northeast in consecutive balls, and Viljoen ended with figures of two for 27 and two for 20 respectively as Kent strangled Hampshire - with only 42 runs coming in the last six-and-a-half overs.“We were probably 10 to 15 runs light but it wasn’t as good a batting pitch as we some of the ones we get here.

Vince said: “We knew we had to come out and bowl tightly for the majority of that innings.

“We did everything right and got on top but Blake has come in and scored a pretty special knock.

“He top edged a few, edged a few and missed a few but things seemed to go his way and credit to his at the end.

“I don’t think Woody did too much wrong, Blake has just as much right to put them away. He has done it in the past here at the back end.

“We haven’t won but we have done a lot right there. Hopefully we start to build momentum, starting on Wednesday.”

Vince added: I found it tricky for a while and then built a partnership with Sam and took more risks. There are still 12 games to go and ”