Jack Lavous struck an unbeaten 25 as Hambledon snatched a narrow triumph over Portchester A in South East Hants Indoor League division one last night.
The Dons ran out three-run winners after posting 89 for three - and in the process leapt out of the relegation zone.
Hambledon were put in by Portchester and Lavous anchored the innings, while useful contributions from Rhidian Chapman and Nick Scutt boosted the total late on.
After the break, tight bowling restricted Portchester to just 28 for one in the opening five overs of their reply.
And with the pressure now firmly on their opposition, the Dons kept it tight to leave Portchester three runs short on 86 for four.
Skipper Dan Hewitt said: 'Jack showed he doesn't crumble on the cricket pitch like he does on a golf course.
'We knew we needed to bowl well and not concede a shed load of extras.
'And when we sniffed a chance, like lions on the savannah, the lads went in for the kill.
'It was great to start 2012 with an emphatic win.'