Draw could be crucial for Hampshire

Will Smith. Picture: Neil Marshall
Will Smith. Picture: Neil Marshall
Kyle Abbott Picture: Neil Marshall

Hampshire and rain frustrate Middlesex

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Will Smith admitted Hampshire’s draw with Somerset could be crucial in their bid to climb the table.

Rain washed out the final day of the County Championship division one clash at the Ageas Bowl.

The hosts were poised 82 runs adrift of Somerset, with six second innings wickets remaining.

However, the downpours ensured the match was drawn.

Dale Benkenstein’s side remain at the foot of the top-flight table – but they cut the gap to Surrey to 14 points, with a game in hand.

Stand-in skipper Smith said: ‘Points are massive in our situation.

‘Last year we saw the benefit of scraping through games we were on the wrong side of and that helped us out at the end of the season.

‘The weather, whether we deserved it or not, has come and we have got those extra five points. Those points are crucial.

‘We are looking to finish as high up the table as we can.

‘It isn’t just points to stave off relegation.

‘We are well aware we can’t get ourselves into those positions again.

‘We have to make sure we are ahead of the game.

‘It was the second session on day one which set us back on a good wicket.

‘We were well under par in the first innings.

‘While we aren’t getting the weight of runs, everyone is playing well but there are only so many times you can say that before you look within and ask questions about scoring hundreds.

‘It is just getting over that final hurdle.

‘We saw at the end of last season when we do click and get big scores, it helps massively.’