Portsmouth get surprise silver lining

Pat Burns. Picture: Paul Jacobs (142279-3)
Pat Burns. Picture: Paul Jacobs (142279-3)
Andrew Gorvin bowling for Havant.  Picture: Neil Marshall (171025-5)

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Dave Henderson enjoyed a departing bonus in his final game as skipper with the news Portsmouth were crowned champions of Southern Electric Premier League division two, even though their own match was abandoned.

The St Helen’s outfit went into the final round of fixtures in second place in the table and knowing OTs & Romsey were big favourites to take the crown.

But a surprise defeat for their rivals – to the already-relegated Hursley Park in one of the few matches to beat the weather – handed the title to Portsmouth.

For Henderson, it was a fitting finale to a fine season from his side as he calls time on his first-team career and hands over the reins to a successor for next term’s division one campaign.

Portsmouth had turned in one final impressive bowling display to dismiss Tichborne Park for 145.

Pat Burns (four for 31) and Andy Marston (three for 22) saw the visitors dismissed in 39 overs.

Harry Collier (24 not out)and Jack Marston (22 not out) had then guided Portsmouth to 58 for two when the rain arrived and eventually saw the game abandoned.

But the result elsewhere meant Portsmouth got their hands on the trophy.

Elsewhere in division two, Hambledon looked well on course to complete their season with another win after Bashley II were bowled out for just 104.

The New Forest club lost their final eight wickets for just nine runs.

A superb spell from Rhidian Chapman (three for eight) began the collapse, which was completed by Shane Nkomo (five for three).

But the Dons were unable to start their reply because of the weather.

In the premier division, Havant confirmed their position as runners-up after their clash with Bashley was also cut short.

Andy Gorvin hit 39 in Havant’s 141 for six.

Ventnor may feel they were saved by the rain after they were bowled out for just 111 in their clash with Lymington.

But the Islanders’ recent revival meant their relegation fears were allayed several weeks ago.

In division three, Havant II’s Ollie Jones (72) led the way in his side’s 185 all out against Lymington II.

But the abandonment ended their hopes of sneaking into a promotion spot as they ended up in third place.

Gosport Borough finished in fourth position, while Waterlooville were fifth after their matches also failed to beat the weather.