Hampshire on brink after Somerset loss

Hampshire's Liam Dawson. Picture: Neil Marshall
Hampshire's Liam Dawson. Picture: Neil Marshall
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Career-best T20 performances from Liam Dawson and Chris Wood couldn't stop Hampshire falling to defeat at Somerset.

Dawson hit 82 off 41 balls with Wood's return of five for 32 not enough to stop the visitors falling to a 17-run loss in a high-scoring Vitality Blast south group match at Taunton.

West Indies paceman Jerome Taylor claimed five wickets after the home side posted 197 for seven after losing the toss.

Somerset recovered from 17 for three thanks to James Hildreth (57), Corey Anderson (32) and late cameos from Lewis Gregory, who smashed 24 off nine balls and Roelof van der Merwe, whose unbeaten 31 came off just 13 deliveries.

Left-arm seamer Wood notched three wickets with his first eight balls at the start of the innings and at one point had figures of four for nine from 2.1 overs.

In reply, Hampshire were given hope by a fifth-wicket stand of 82 in 8.3 overs between James Vince (77 off 45 balls) and Dawson, but eventually fell short as Taylor claimed five for 15 from four overs and Jamie Overton three for 37.

Dawson's innings was exhilarating, but in the end he was eclipsed as man-of-the-match Taylor, who looks a shrewd overseas signing by Somerset.

There is now little margin for error if Hampshire are to stand a chance of reaching the quarter-finals.

Dawson acknowledged that reality, as well as the fact his side aren't reaching the levels expected of them.

The all-rounder took solace, however, from the performances of himself and his Hampshire team-mate in the west country.

He said: 'I am pleased that both myself and Chris Wood, who is a good friend of mine, came out of the game with career-bests. He bowled really well.

'It is never easy batting with James Vince because he makes everything look so easy.

‘I was pleased with the way I struck the ball and helped us take the game into the final over.

'But it doesn't make up for another defeat. We are hurting in that dressing room because we know we are under-performing considering the players we have in the team.

'We probably have to win all our remaining matches to stand a chance of reaching the quarter-finals of a competition we really fancied ourselves to do well in.'