an Emotional Jimmy Adams led Hampshire to an historic one-day double and admitted: It’s the stuff of dreams.
The popular Royals skipper hit 66 with the bat as his side served up an all-too-familar nail-biting last-ball decider to lift the Clydesdale Bank 40 trophy in the closest of finishes.
With the scores level opponents Warwickshire needed one run for victory from the final ball of the game.
Kabir Ali and wicketkeeper Michael Bates kept their nerve though as Hampshire won by virtue of losing fewer wickets to add the crown to the Friends Life t20 title they claimed last month.
And Adams admitted he would savour every last moment of leading his county to Lord’s glory.
He said: ‘It’s an amazing feeling – I never dreamed this would happen.
‘You dream of playing in Lord’s finals and I’ve been lucky enough to get there, but I’ve never dreamed of captaining a side and having the honour of walking out here with the boys behind me.
‘I will sit back at some point and savour that and I will probably get a bit emotional about it.
‘It’s been unbelievable.
‘You dare to have a think about what it might be like to captain a side to win at Lord’s, but I wouldn’t have scripted it like that.
‘I’m struggling to put it into words if I’m honest but it’s just brilliant.’
Man-of-the-match Adams and Sean Ervine (57) set a decent target, while Michael Carberry (35) and Simon Katich (35 not out) certainly played their part.
But chasing Hampshire’s total of 244 for five, Ian Bell (81) starred for the recently-crowned county champions who needed just seven runs to win from the final six deliveries and looked favourites to seal success.
But under the most intense pressure, Ali bowled a fine last over to send his team-mates and a big travelling support from the south coast absolutely wild.
Adams added: ‘I’m amazingly proud of what we have achieved.
‘We’ll be looking for some four-day success next year and hope that the one-day success continues.
‘But I wouldn’t trade this year for anything.
‘The guys have been outstanding and they have stuck to the task really well.
‘It was a big ask but we’ve just got over that final hurdle.
‘I was a nervous man all day.
‘I try to take a step away but I’m a fairly inexperienced captain. But I try to let the guys think that I am reasonably in control.
‘I’m like the swan who is paddling away like mad beneath the surface!’
Adams will now be part of the Hampshire side that heads to South Africa next month to play in the ICC Champions League t20 against the best sides in the world.
And with the Royals in the winning habit, Adams has not written off their hopes.
He smiled: ‘Who knows how we will do. We’ve got to get through the qualifiers first.
It will be a great experience for all of us.
‘We have players who revel in the spotlight.’
REPORT AND FURTHER REACTION FROM LORD’S n Pages 46 & 47