FRIENDS PROVIDENT TROPHY FINAL, Lord's: Hampshire 221-6 (40.3 ovs) bt Sussex 219 (50 ovs) by six wicketsMatch scorecard
By Jamie Lillywhite
A Cork-inspired Hampshire were keyed up from the outset
Hampshire captured the Friends Provident Trophy with a six-wicket victory against Sussex at Lord's.
Evergreen Dominic Cork claimed 3-6 in 11 balls to help reduce Sussex to 43-4 after they had chosen to bat first.
Sussex skipper Michael Yardy rescued his side with a calm, unbeaten 92, sharing 60 with Rory Hamilton-Brown.
Chasing 220, Hampshire raced to 73-0 after 15 overs, James Adams with six fours in his 55, and though Luke Wright took 3-50, they won with 57 balls left.
As so often happens in one-day finals at Lord's, albeit usually later in the year, key wickets fell in the early stages.
The sun was shining and there were certainly no gremlins in the wicket, but, after some fortuitous inside edges from both openers, the wily new ball pairing of Cork and Dimitri Mascarenhas began to exert the pressure.
Ed Joyce was first to fall, the ball ricocheting off the bat on to the stumps when he was attempting to leave outside the off-stump.
Matt Prior began this week celebrating England's first Ashes win at Lord's for 75 years, but his return to the home of cricket was very different.
He might have gone first ball, struck on the pad when offering no shot, but the next one got him, edging the effervescent Cork behind when tentatively prodding forward.
Chris Nash was unlucky to have been given lbw by umpire Neil Mallender when replays showed the ball would have gone over the stumps, but worse was to follow for Sussex when the prolific Murray Goodwin was run out for only a single.
It was a painful day all-round for the Sussex team and their supporters
Goodwin tried to get things moving with a quick single to mid-off but did not count on the agility of Chris Tremlett, who swooped, collected and threw down the stumps with a direct hit.
The situation bore strong similarities to the 2006 final when Sussex were 52-5 before mustering 172 and bowling out Lancashire for 157.
Luke Wright was another to play on to his stumps, but Yardy kept the innings intact with a sensible knock.
He scored most of his runs through the off-side with occasional deft reverse sweeps, although none of his partners could provide a similarly substantial innings.
There were two useful partnerships but both were broken before they could put Sussex into the ascendancy.
First West Indian Dwayne Smith whipped a six into cow corner off Sean Ervine but then was caught when he chipped softly to deep mid-wicket.
Hamilton-Brown drove some fluent boundaries in an enterprising innings, but as he sought to take advantage of the batting powerplay he was tucked up by spinner Imran Tahir and spooned a catch to mid-wicket in the 43rd over.
Sussex needed something special but James Kirtley, who took 5-27 in that famous 2006 final triumph, was wayward and went for three fours in one over.
Yasir Arafat was also expensive, the field settings lacked the inspiration so urgently required and after the first 10 overs Hampshire had coasted to 51-0, as opposed to Sussex's 38-2.
Adams, fidgety at the crease with an exaggerated, high backlift was also prolific through the off-side before he was another unfortunate victim of umpire Mallender, his lbw ball clearly pitching outside the leg stump.
Off the final ball of the 32nd over, and exactly halfway to their target, Hampshire lost another wicket as the assured Lumb edged a fine ball moving away from Wright was well caught low to his left by Prior.
But Carberry was in sublime touch, with more than a hint of the calypso about his batting, and at the 25-over point Hampshire were 50 runs further on than Sussex and had lost four fewer wickets.
However, he tried to pull a delivery that was not quite short enough and edged into his helmet, the ball ballooning up to give Arafat a simple return catch.
Wright struck again on his return, Nash taking a well-judged catch on the boundary to dismiss Ervine, but Chris Benham and an injured Nic Pothas ensured there was to be no fairytale finale for Sussex this time.
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