Agar, Finn device Hampshire's madcap meltdown


Take Colin Munro’s 29-ball 58 out of Hampshire’s 143-all-out and the fact that they were once favourites to track down 165 feels like a bit of farce. Courtesy an unreal meltdown, that saw Hampshire lose their last six wickets for 16 runs, Middlesex returned to winning ways in the T20 Blast after enduring four straight losses. The win on Thursday (July 26) leapfrogged them over Essex to the seventh spot, leaving Hampshire pinned to the bottom.

At the end of the 10-over mark, Hampshire sat pretty at 95 for 2. It was Ashton Agar then who sent back the big-hitting Munro, and then followed it with Rilee Rossouw’s wicket in the same over. Ending with figures of 3 for 17, Agar found an able ally in Steven Finn, who had earlier picked James Vince in the first over of the chase. The fast bowler returned to scalp Chris Wood and Tom Alsop off consecutive balls in the 17th over, thus adding fuel to a proper meltdown that cost Hampshire a game they should have won.

All that after Middlesex had a par kinda total, which was puffed belatedly by Dwayne Bravo’s assault of 20 off 9 balls. Opening batsman Paul Stirling was the top-scorer with a delightful 44-ball 60 but there was nothing much from the rest, three of whom were run-out. But as it turned out, 165 proved more than enough in a comfortable win for the hosts, which helped them avenge the 21-run loss to Hampshire just last week.

Brief Scores: Middlesex 165/8 in 20 overs (Paul Stirling 60; Fidel Edwards 2-30) beat Hampshire 143 in 18.5 overs (Colin Munro 58; Ashton Agar 3-17, Steven Finn 3-21) by 22 runs.

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