Second string keep on rolling

Hambledon defeated Bramshaw at Ridge Meadow to further strengthen their Hampshire League division three south title challenge.

The sun was out and lighting up the ground as the Dons looked to shine themselves with a very strong team.

As is tradition, the toss took place between the two skippers and skipper Rhidian Chapman won - inviting the visitors to field.

Another new combination of opening bats saw Mark Le-Clercq and Jamie Lewis take to the crease.

A good start at 40 without loss from the first 10 overs and the Dons continued in much the same vain with a big score looking likely.

Le-Clercq was the first victim, though, as he was bowled for 29 - damaging the average.

Paul Vickers then got another peach first up, taking the top of off stump - a shoulder shrug said it all.

Hat-trick ball, with Owain Chapman facing... he played and missed before he struggled to get going and was then bowled out for one.

Cam Prentice was next in but four balls later the mallards were chirping yet again.

James Marshall, at number six, took the fight back to Bramshaw with Lewis having watched a few come and go.

The latter was eventually caught out for 63 - a top knock.

His exit saw Will Mann arrive but he also registered a golden before Kyle Shinn was dismissed for four and the skipper was also removed first ball.

Marshall was then bowled for 25 to leave young guns George Harding and Spencer Le-CLercq to act as the home guard and last line of defence.

They didn't panic and Corporal Jones would have been proud as all was going well until a mix-up in the running saw Harding out for nine and Le-Clercq not out on eight.

Hambledon were all out for 159 with five overs remaining - a criminal offence, with no passing go and collecting your 200 runs.

At the break, many Bramshaw players became green-eyed at the feasts put before them at tea with one head sayind: 'Imagine getting this every other week, wouldn't mind that!'

The Dons took to the field once more just lacking a few runs to be able to apply pressure and a good start was needed.

Chapman came down the hill and Shinn bowled up, both looking to keep things tight and pick up a wicket or two.

Only one wicket between the two of them, though, as Chapman bowled one of the openers.

Prentice then came off the short run for a spell of blistering pace - time after time missing the outside edge.

Meanwhile, Marshall came up the hill for a brief spell of three overs for 15 before Prentice finished with one for six in six overs.

At drinks Bramshaw were looking like cruising to victory, 80 for two from 23, and Hambledon desperately needed to apply the pressure with some spin.

Spencer Le-Clercq and Harding began to bowl in tandem but Bramshaw soon worked their way to a 100 and the Dons looked down and out.

Harding took a spell after conceding 19 runs in three overs, Spencer (four for 31) changed ends and Mark Le-Clercq (three for 12) came on.

Another breathtaking set of overs saw the Dons take wicket after wicket - only one batsman putting up a fight with 60.

The victory for the Dons saw them move up to second spot, with only Highfield above them.