James Vince admitted Hampshire missed an opportunity as they stumbled to defeat against Kent at the Ageas Bowl.
The home side’s NatWest T20 Blast campaign suffered another blow with a five-run defeat to the Spitfires.
Hampshire were in the box seat for much of the contest, restricting their visitors to 159 for six and then looking in command at 88 for two with 10 overs remaining.
But the boundaries dried up and – with 16 needed from the final over – they fell short and closed on 154 for four.
Skipper Vince said: ‘For three quarters of the game we did better than them but we struggled to find the boundary in the second half of our innings.
‘We would have liked to win with an over to spare. It was a bit of a mess up but we have to move on.’
Shahid Afridi, who took four for 26 with the ball, did not bat despite Hampshire’s need for boundaries.
Instead, Liam Dawson and Lewis McManus were entrusted with helping Tom Alsop (43 not out) finish the job.
Vince, who hit 39, added: ‘Afridi hasn’t really hit it miles yet and McManus has been in really good touch.
‘We didn’t lose a wicket for a while, so no-one went in and we left too much to do in the back end.’
Hampshire, who sit fourth in the south group – level on points with Kent, visit sixth-placed Middlesex on Thursday before hosting eighth-placed Essex on Friday.