SPL Division One cricket: Crushing defeat against Basingstoke & North Hants sees New Milton relegation fears grow
SPL Division One
New Milton CC 75
Basingstoke & North Hants CC 79-1
Brad Neal produced a blistering new-ball spell to remove five of New Milton’s top six batsmen and set up a crushing nine-wicket win for Basingstoke & North Hants.
The SPL Division One’s bottom club – who have avoided defeat only once in nine matches – never got their innings up and running, but things went from bad to worse with the final five batters all out for one run or less at May’s Bounty.
Basingstoke & North Hants’ Neal took 5-24 and, with support from Matt Donaldson and, latterly, Dubs Wood, routed New Milton for a paltry 75 – a target Basingstoke polished off inside the 12th over.
The emphatic margin of victory enabled table-topping Basingstoke to stretch their lead over Andover to 19 points – the Lions pulled off a stunning three-wicket win of their own at Rowledge but spilt points in the process.
New Milton were on their knees at 46-7 by the time Neal and Donaldson (3-32) had finished their respective spells.
Toby Edwards (31) struck two sixes and three fours in a short spell of Milton resistance, but having lifted the score to 73, the Green & Golds promptly lost their last three wickets for two runs, two of them to the spin of Dubs Wood (2-0).
With wet weather threatening, Basingstoke didn’t waste time polishing off the target and had 29 runs on the Bernie Harrison Memorial scoreboard when Wood was caught for 16 by Ben Griffiths off New Milton skipper George Watts.
Matt Deadman hit a six and five fours in his unbeaten 36, while Ash Neal beat the boundary rope three times in scoring his match-clinching 18 not out.
New Milton return to action against New Forest rivals Calmore Sports on Saturday at 12.30pm.