Late Sixes Propel Hampshire Hawks to Thrilling Victory Over Kent Spitfires

IN an exhilarating T20 Blast encounter, Hampshire Hawks pulled off a remarkable comeback to secure a dramatic three-wicket win over Kent Spitfires, thanks to some late heroics from James Fuller, Benny Howell, and Liam Dawson.

With the Hawks needing 42 runs off the last three overs, Fuller ignited the turnaround with three consecutive sixes.

Howell and Dawson followed suit, smashing the ball over the ropes to clinch Hampshire’s first T20 win of the season.

All-rounder Joey Evison had earlier put Kent in the driver’s seat, taking three for 31—his second-best T20 figures. However, Hampshire’s late surge overshadowed his efforts.

Daniel Bell-Drummond and Sam Billings had set a solid foundation for the Spitfires with scores in the 40s, leading their team to a respectable 165 for nine. But it wasn’t enough to stave off Hampshire’s resurgence.

Chasing 166, openers Ben McDermott and James Vince were cautious, managing a 42-run powerplay without any aggressive shots.

McDermott tried to up the ante, successfully hitting a six, but his next attempt only found Zak Crawley at deep midwicket.

Nick Gubbins, replacing the injured Ali Orr, couldn’t make an impact, falling for a duck. Vince, struggling with his timing, departed for a laborious 35 off 32 balls.

Friday night’s hat-trick hero Matt Parkinson then dismissed Toby Albert, further denting Hampshire’s chase.

Joe Weatherley and Fuller kept the scoreboard ticking but were behind the required rate until the 18th over. With the game slipping away and 42 needed off the last three overs, Fuller took charge.

He dispatched Beyers Swanepoel for three consecutive sixes, bringing up a fifty stand with Weatherley and swinging the momentum back to Hampshire.

Despite Weatherley falling for 49, Howell’s six off the final ball of the penultimate over left Hampshire needing nine from the last six balls. Grant Stewart dismissed Howell but was then smashed for a six by Dawson. A quick single sealed a stunning victory for the Hawks.

Earlier, Kent had chosen to bat and capitalized on the powerplay under clear skies. Chris Wood, in his testimonial year, was the only bowler to apply any pressure early on.

Bell-Drummond was in sublime form, scoring 42 off 27 balls and guiding Kent to a 59-run opening stand before Fuller had him caught out.

Fuller then bowled Tawanda Muyeye and narrowly missed a hat-trick, with Joe Denly thwarting the attempt. Howell further pegged back Kent by bowling Zak Crawley.

Sam Billings and Denly both fell in a single Dawson over, with the Hawks tightening the screws. Kent could only muster 31 runs in the last four overs, each of which saw a wicket fall.

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