Middlesex close with solitary win
An unbeaten half-century from Nick Compton saw Middlesex to a clinical nine-wickets victory over Hampshire with six overs to spare in their Twenty20 Cup match at Southgate.
The 23-year-old played positively throughout, producing some wristy strokeplay as the home side chased a paltry target of just 112 runs after an abject batting display by their opponents.
Compton did survive a chance when he was dropped on 32 by Mitchell Stokes with the score on 62, but otherwise gave a fine exhibition of well-timed and finely-placed shots.
Compton and his opening partner Paul Weekes showed an aggressive approach from the start, with Weekes the more adventurous. He clubbed 45, including seven boundaries, as the opening pair took the home side to within 12 runs of victory before they were separated.
Weekes had just struck Shaun Udal for the third six of his innings but, attempting to add to his tally from the bowler's next delivery, he only succeeded in picking out Chris Benham at deep mid-wicket.
Compton continued untroubled and reached his 50 from 44 balls, including one six shortly before Scott Styris finished the game with a six off James Tomlinson that gave Middlesex their first win of the season in the competition.
With neither side having any chance of reaching the knock-out stages, the visitors produced a lacklustre display, limping to 50 for three at the halfway stage, having struck just seven fours.
It was not until the 11th over that they managed to clear the boundary rope for the first time when Greg Lamb drove Jamie Dalrymple, but the spinner got his revenge two overs later when he deceived the batsman with a slower delivery.
Although six batsmen reached double figures, none was able to impose themselves against some nagging bowling, although few were prepared to chance their arm either.
Dominic Thornely top-scored with 22 from 29 balls, but that only contained two boundaries as his side produced a feeble performance with the bat.
Only three overs yielded 10 runs or more as the Hawks recorded their lowest total in the competition for a completed innings.
Johann Louw returned figures of four for 18, the best for Middlesex in the history of the competition, whilst Styris returned one for 12 from his four overs, which is the most economical for the county in Twenty20 competition.