Smith augments major pounding of minor

Hampshire 321-4 Cambridgeshire 82 Hampshire win by 239 runs

A trip to Fenland can be a diverting business. The large horizons, interrupted by ditches, spires and warehouses, can disorientate and distance, like the difference between minor and first-class counties, ought to be measured in leagues. Certainly here, Cambridgeshire were not in the same one as Hampshire who crushed their hosts by 239 runs, the sixth heaviest defeat in the competition's history.

Minor counties live for days, if not results, like this. Each dreams of an upset that will give them their 15 column inches of fame. But as neither an incubator of young talent nor a provider of rigorous competition (only three batsmen managed to stagger into double figures here), their role in the new Strategic Plan, announced on 5 August, must be under threat.

Before the England and Wales Cricket Board's inception last January, the Minor Counties' Association received pounds 660,000 in hand- outs. Unless they can contribute in pushing talent up the pyramid towards the England team at its apex, it is hard to envisage such payments continuing.

Comprising largely of part-timers - their fastest bowler, Chris Whyborn, is an officer in the RAF, while their steadiest, Tim Smith, farms Llamas in Hertfordshire - the home side had little power in preventing Hampshire's batsmen from taking the game out of their reach.

On a sluggish pitch, Matthew Hayden, who scored 90, and Robin Smith nudged stroked then bludgeoned their way to a second-wicket partnership worth 176 runs. Returning from a back injury, Smith, whose 126 won him the man of the match award, was comfortably the more domineering partner and despite conceding a 16-over start to the Australian, overtook him as each entered the 80s.

Hayden had clearly set himself the task of batting through the innings and his dismissal, caught and bowled by flying officer Whyborn with some eight overs to go, clearly irked.

Of course, the home side might well have had something more feasible to chase had Brad Donelan - one of two professionals - held on to a chance from Smith when the batsman was on two.

Until that moment, they had kept Hampshire on a fairly tight leash with some straight if paceless bowling from farmer Smith and Ajaz Akhtar. It was not the only aberration, and two further catches and a Caribbean amount of extras helped the visiting side to distance themselves even further.

Faced with such an enormous task, the home side's response was predictably weak. Hampshire are not the bowling superpower they used to be when Malcolm Marshall tore in off 35 yards, but their adherence to the basics of line and length was too much for their opponents on this pitch as John Stephenson, the Hampshire skipper, ended with a career-best 5 for 34.

News
The current recommendation from Britain's Chief Medical Officer, is that people refrain from drinking on at least two days a week
food + drinkTheory is that hangovers are caused by methanol poisoning
News
scienceExcitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
Life and Style
Customers can get their caffeine fix on the move
food + drink
News
newsRyan Crighton goes in search of the capo dei capi
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Extras
indybest

Arts and Entertainment
Actors front row from left, Jared Leto, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Ellen DeGeneres, Bradley Cooper, Peter Nyongío Jr., and, second row, from left, Channing Tatum, Julia Roberts, Kevin Spacey, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyongío and Angelina Jolie as they pose for a
film
Sport
sport
Life and Style
techCould new invention save millions in healthcare bills?
Sport
David Moyes gets soaked
sport Moyes becomes latest manager to take part in the ALS challenge
Voices
A meteor streaks across the sky during the Perseid Meteor Shower at a wind farm near Bogdanci, south of Skopje, Macedonia, in the early hours of 13 August
voicesHagel and Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise, says Robert Fisk
Life and Style
Horst P Horst mid-fashion shoot in New York, 1949
fashionFar-reaching retrospective to celebrate Horst P Horst's six decades of creativity
News
Members and supporters of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community walk with a rainbow flag during a rally in July
i100
Life and Style
Black Ivory Coffee is made using beans plucked from elephants' waste after ingested by the animals
food + drinkFirm says it has created the "rarest" coffee in the world
Life and Style
news

As Voltaire once said, “Ice cream is exquisite. What a pity it isn’t illegal”

Life and Style
food + drinkThese simple recipes will have you refreshed within minutes
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Market Administrator (1st line Support, Bloomberg, Broker)

Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Market Administrator (1st line Support, Trade Fl...

Service Desk Analyst (Windows, Active Directory, ITIL, Reuter)

£35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Service Desk Analyst (Windows, Active Dire...

Data Support Analyst (Linux, Solaris, Windows Server, Reuters)

Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Data Support Analyst (Linux, Solaris, Windows Se...

Helpdesk Support Engineer (Windows, MS Office, Exchange)

Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Helpdesk Support Engineer (Windows, MS Office, E...

Day In a Page

All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Robert Fisk: All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Chuck Hagel and Martin Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise
Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

So claims an EU report which points to the Italian Mob’s alleged grip on everything from public works to property
Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Once the poor relation, the awards show now has the top stars and boasts the best drama
What happens to African migrants once they land in Italy during the summer?

What happens to migrants once they land in Italy?

Memphis Barker follows their trail through southern Europe
French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

The ugly causeway is being dismantled, an elegant connection erected in its place. So everyone’s happy, right?
Frank Mugisha: Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked

Frank Mugisha: 'Coming out was a gradual process '

Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked
Radio 1 to hire 'YouTube-famous' vloggers to broadcast online

Radio 1’s new top ten

The ‘vloggers’ signed up to find twentysomething audience
David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

A blistering attack on US influence on British television has lifted the savvy head of Channel 4 out of the shadows
Florence Knight's perfect picnic: Make the most of summer's last Bank Holiday weekend

Florence Knight's perfect picnic

Polpetto's head chef shares her favourite recipes from Iced Earl Grey tea to baked peaches, mascarpone & brown sugar meringues...
Horst P Horst: The fashion photography genius who inspired Madonna comes to the V&A

Horst P Horst comes to the V&A

The London's museum has delved into its archives to stage a far-reaching retrospective celebrating the photographer's six decades of creativity
Mark Hix recipes: Try our chef's summery soups for a real seasonal refresher

Mark Hix's summery soups

Soup isn’t just about comforting broths and steaming hot bowls...
Tim Sherwood column: 'It started as a three-horse race but turned into the Grand National'

Tim Sherwood column

I would have taken the Crystal Palace job if I’d been offered it soon after my interview... but the whole process dragged on so I had to pull out
Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard admits he is still below the level of Ronaldo and Messi but, after a breakthrough season, is ready to thrill Chelsea’s fans
Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

The Everton and US goalkeeper was such a star at the World Cup that the President phoned to congratulate him... not that he knows what the fuss is all about
Match of the Day at 50: Show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition

Tom Peck on Match of the Day at 50

The show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition