Scutt back to his best

James Scutt smashed a stunning unbeaten 132 as Hambledon beat Hartley Wintney by nine wickets on Saturday.

The opening batsman has been struggling for form this term but was back to his best in north Hampshire as he shrugged off criticism from the opposition to blast a crucial match-winning ton.

Chasing the home side's total of 235 for nine, Scutt dominated the Hartley Wintney bowling to score the lion's share of the runs required and nudge the Dons closer to Southern Electric Premier League division two safety.

After Joe Collings-Wells has rattled off 39, Rob Atkins (36 not out) teamed up with Scutt to ensure Hambledon's relegation rivals picked up no bowling bonus points.

Earlier, skipper Dan Hewitt had taken four for 51, while James Atkinson (three for 31) and Rupert Hetherington (two for 46) were also among the wickets.

The Dons made life difficult for themselves, though, as they let Hartley Wintney off the hook after reducing them to 113 for six.

But Scutt was in no mood to surrender the points and propelled his side to sixth in the table.

Having leapfrogged Hartley Wintney, Hambledon are also above Andover, OTs & Romsey and Paultons - with Hewitt's men taking on the latter pair in two of their remaining three fixtures.