Former Middlesex batter continues run-scoring form, then showcases unheralded legspin
Hampshire 328 for 7 (Gubbins 131*, Alsop 68, Fuller 54) beat Sussex 230 (Head 52, Gubbins 4-38) by 98 runs
First, Gubbins scored a magnificent century, 131 from 119 deliveries with six fours and five sixes, to help Hampshire post a daunting score of 328 for 7 from their 50 overs. Gubbins’ score was a List A record for a Hampshire batsman against Sussex.
But then Gubbins the legspinner stunned Sussex by taking four wickets for 38 runs as Sussex were bowled out for 230 in 41.2 overs. Before this Gubbins had taken only one wicket, in a T20 match. He has proved a shrewd signing from Middlesex.
A young Sussex side, with five teenagers and three others aged 22 or less, never looked likely to reach their target, and they have now lost two of their opening three games in this competition, with the other match abandoned without a ball being bowled.
Their best hope was their fourth-wicket pairing David Wiese and Travis Head, their most experienced players, who put on 61 in 11 overs. But Wiese fell to a magnificent catch by Scott Currie at wide mid-off and the Gubbins ended their last hope by bowling Head.
While Gubbins was clearly Hampshire’s batting star he received solid support from Tom Alsop and James Fuller, who each hit half-centuries.
Alsop missed Hampshire’s opening match in the competition because he was having a concussion break. But here he came into the side in place of Tom Scriven and gave his side a solid start with Tom Prest after captain Kyle Abbott had chosen to bat first.
Alsop showed his form when he hit boundaries off each of the first three deliveries of the expensive Henry Crocombe’s third over. Alsop and Prest put on 81 for the first wicket before 16-year-old legspinner Archie Lenham came into the attack to bowl the 15th over and immediately bowled Prest for 34.
Gubbins brought up the 100 in the 18th over when he swept Head for four. Alsop looked in such good form that it was a shock when he played on to Danial Ibraham for 68 off 60 balls, with eight fours. By now, though, Gubbins was in full stride.
When Hampshire were 169 from 30 overs they looked capable of scoring 350 or more. But they managed only 52 from the next ten overs because of some tight bowling from the Sussex spin trio of Lenham, Will Beer and James Coles.
It took a sixth wicket stand of 116 in 13 overs between Gubbins and the hard-hitting Fuller to put Hampshire firmly on top. And then it was Gubbins the bowler who took over.