SEAN ERVINE knows Hampshire are facing a huge challenge to avoid defeat against Yorkshire after a tough second day of the County Championship division one clash.
The hosts are 128 runs behind now and Yorkshire still have nine wickets left to add to their lead.
Ervine top scored with 80 while James Vince contributed 60 but Hampshire were bowled out for 222.
And it’s looking like a difficult task now.
Ervine said: ‘We were trying to fight back and were so disappointed to lose so many wickets in such a short space of time.
‘Me and Vincey play positively naturally and once I got the pace of the wicket and knew what their bowlers were up to I could go forward.
‘It is difficult. They are 120 runs ahead and we will have to bowl really well to get ourselves back into this game.
‘We will have to fight like anything to get something from this game.
‘Vincey has been short of runs but once he got going he showed his class. He is easy on the eye.
‘He was very disappointed. He had a big score in his sights and worked hard to get out when he did.’
Yorkshire fast bowler Jack Brooks celebrated his best County Championship figures of the season with five for 53.
Hampshire’s first task of the day was to break a frustrating 47-run partnership between Brooks and Ryan Sidebottom.
They managed to do that in 13 minutes to end the visitors’ first innings on 281, when Gareth Berg bowled Sidebottom past his legs, to record his career best figures of six for 56.
But three morning wickets stunted Hampshire’s advantage in the match.
Brooks had Will Smith pinned leg before while pushing forward.
Sidebottom copied his strike bowler at the other end by having Tom Alsop leg before, while Jimmy Adams got a 23 run start and then prodded Steve Patterson to short mid-wicket.
But the flurry stopped when Vince and Ervine shared a 107-run stand.
However, Hampshire lost their remaining six wickets for 23 runs in 13 overs.
The final four were the final pieces of Brooks’ magic, his second five-wicket haul of the season, as Lewis McManus flicked loosely to short mid-wicket, Berg miss-pulled behind, Brad Wheal was bowled and Andy Carter saw his stumps flayed as he attempted an ugly hoick – the hosts 59 runs behind.
Yorkshire were given 23 overs to bat out and did not find it easy with Berg and Wheal causing constant problems.
Adam Lyth was dropped at first slip by Ervine, but Wheal had Alex Lees’ leg pole dismantled with a fine in-swinging yorker.
But the visitors managed to get to close just one down with a lead of 128.