Gubbins’ Century hosts an intriguing final day in Hampshire
Nick Gubbins scored twin centuries in an LV=Insurance County Championship game for the first time in his career as Hampshire placed Lancashire 351 to win at the Ageas Bowl.
Left-handed batter Gubbins followed up his innings by saving 101 pitches out with 130 to give Hampshire a strong lead on a pitch that had previously benefited bowlers. He teamed up with Ben Brown, who scored a high quality 72, to put in 144 for the fifth wicket.
The home side were eventually knocked out for 344, with Lancashire reaching nine from six overs without a wicket from close range.
It was a better day for the stick. The sky was blue and the ball already had 36 overs. The caveat being James Anderson and his relentless control. His first six-man spell of the day saw four young ladies and the wicket of Liam Dawson. He eventually recorded three for 36.
Gubbins was largely anonymous in his slow-running building, though he came to life with two catchy cover records. The first punishing a rare piece of width offered by Anderson, the latter bringing it to a fifty from 120 balls.
Gubbins and Brown are two recent signings underpinning Hampshire’s pursuit of a first title since 1974; hunger having been undesirable by previous counties but with county best player records. They increased their lead safely, making the most of an aging unresponsive ball, totaling 144 runs together in the lazy spring afternoon sun.
Gubbins’ big moment came when he shoved Hasan Ali through the covers, with his 218 delivery. For a second, emotion seemed to swell as he gently punched the air with his head bowed, tapped three his bat once on the floor before turning around and almost collapsing in a hug with Brown. Only then did he take off his helmet and raise his bat towards the locker room for the 13th ton of his first-class career.
Brown reached 72 before the second new ball pinned him straight ahead, with Felix Organ following shortly after when he didn’t offer a shot to George Balderson. The lead past 300 before Gubbins was finally dismissed after 231 carries and 515 deliveries in the game when Danny Lamb trapped him in the crease. Keith Barker contributed with 40 before covering, James Fuller was knocked down and Muhammad Abbas lost long to finish the innings.
burst of vitality
Hilton Garden Inn