Mullally enjoys five-wicket haul

Click to follow
The Independent Online

A look at the line-up revealed that Leicestershire were without four bowlers - not that they could have done much good here after Hampshire put them in - as they attempted to claw back something from a season which is beginning to slip away from them.

A look at the line-up revealed that Leicestershire were without four bowlers - not that they could have done much good here after Hampshire put them in - as they attempted to claw back something from a season which is beginning to slip away from them.

And while it was probably bad enough being without the likes of the leg spinner Anil Kumble and James Ormond (both hamstring), Phillip DeFreitas (groin) and Chris Lewis (hip), it got worse.

Plans to play Billy Stelling, a South African with European connections, was scuppered when he injured his groin in the AON Risk Trophy triumph against Kent the previous day.

But the salt for those wounds was applied by another Leicestershire bowler, albeit a former member of the county - Alan Mullally, now with Hampshire. He is really hitting a hot streak as his fourth five-wicket haul in five innings demonstrated.

Not that everything is going Hampshire's way. They began this match at the foot of the First Division table, and then ran up against pockets of resistance in the shape of Aftab Habib, Iain Sutcliffe and latterly Jon Dakin.

Sutcliffe dug in for a good two hours, putting on 92 hard-earned runs for the third wicket with the in-form Habib, and had just reached his first fifty of the season when he hooked Alex Morris and perished in the deep.

Habib looked determined to improve on his 66 of the first meeting back in May. He did not quite make it, though. Rain, which lopped 22 overs from the day's allocation, had driven everyone off with Habib on 61. He fell in the first over back, adjudged caught behind although there was a ferocity in the way he rubbed his right hip.

That wicket went to Dimitri Mascarenhas, one of four catches in the day to wicketkeeper Adrian Aymes, then Mullally came in and added three more wickets in rapid succession to those of Darren Maddy and Ben Smith earlier in the day.

Dakin hung in there until he had made 60 and helped Leicestershire to a second batting point. But the day belonged to Hampshire, who have not yet failed to pick up maximum bowling points in their 12 Championship matches to date.

Comments