Jimmy Adams paid tribute to a match-winning knock from James Vince as Hampshire took another step towards a miraculous escape from relegation at Edgbaston.
Despite facing a deficit of 109 runs at the halfway stage against Warwickshire – Vince smashed a superb 145 as the visitors hit 416 in their second innings to set the title-chasing Bears 308 to win.
James Tomlinson and Chris Wood then played starring roles with the new ball as Warwickshire were skittled for 98, giving Adams’ side a second straight win in their fight for division one survival.
The Hampshire skipper said: ‘Vincey’s innings was pretty special. I thought he mixed it up really well with defence and aggression.
‘Sean Ervine’s innings was important and Chris Wood, too.
‘It is those little things, those cameos, that set the tone.
‘We always talk about momentum in cricket and it gave us that little bit to take into the bowling.
‘Then the boys were sensational.’
While Hampshire’s batting has looked brittle at times this season in four-day cricket, Vince stood up to the task in style as he shared a 120-run partnership with Ervine to swing the game back in the visitors’ favour.
Adams said: ‘To get 141 in the first innings and face a deficit and then set a total for them to chase of 300 was beyond what we hoped.
‘Then to come out after that and to do what we did with the ball was just one of those days.
‘You have them like that sometimes and you just have to make the most of them. We know the type of player he (Vince) is and the talent he has.
‘But it’s about choosing his moments and knowing when to do the hard yards and knowing when to back himself and take the attack to the bowlers.
‘We knew 308 would be a competitive score and we just knew we had to get out of the blocks well. Fortunately, Tommo and Woody set a great tone.’
Hampshire now host fellow strugglers Worcestershire at the Rose Bowl tomorrow in a relegation decider – the loser almost certain to drop into division two.
And Adams, who has taken the reins with Dominic Cork injured, believes there is now genuine belief Hampshire can escape.
‘Just like the previous couple of years, we’ve found our feet towards the end of the season,’ he said.
‘Hopefully it’s not too late this year. We’ve still got a lot of work to do but the mood in the camp is pretty buoyant now so fingers crossed we can take it into the Worcestershire game.’