Rejuvenated Liam can keep filling the void for Hampshire

Liam Dawson celebrates a wicket with Simon Katich, right. Picture: Neil Marshall
Liam Dawson celebrates a wicket with Simon Katich, right. Picture: Neil Marshall
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Giles White will be looking to the skies before weighing up his selection for Hampshire’s trip to Northamptonshire.

The Hampshire manager gambled on an extra seamer for the draw with Leicestershire, leaving out England spinner Danny Briggs to restore David Griffiths to the side on a bowler-friendly pitch.

It’s expected that tomorrow’s trip to Wantage Road could see very similar conditions after the recent rain.

Liam Dawson picked up a five-wicket haul in the rain-affected draw with the Foxes.

And his resurgence with the ball has given White some extra room for manoeuvre in team selection – allowing him to include an extra bowler, without weakening the batting.

White explained: ‘It was encouraging the way Liam bowled against Leicestershire.

‘It was something we highlighted at the end of the year that, if he was to become an all-rounder, it adds an awful lot to this squad. Credit to him, he’s put in the hard work.

‘I think Danny Briggs’ and Liam Dawson’s spin bowling gives us options as much as anything else.

‘We can look at conditions and pick a side accordingly.’

Hampshire were left frustrated over the weekend when just 10 overs of play were possible in two days.

But Michael Carberry looked in good form with an unbeaten 84 and Hampshire will fancy their chances of recording a second successive away win – weather permitting.

‘It was disappointing,’ added the Hampshire manager.

‘We turned up hoping to get out there but it’s the way the weather has been, so it was pretty frustrating.

‘We got ourselves into a good position, though.

‘We played some good, consistent cricket and there are lots of positives to take out of it.

‘Unfortunately, the weather beat us but, as a team, that was probably our most consistent performance so far.

‘We had a partnership of 120 between (Simon) Katich and Carberry.

‘Hopefully the weather is better at Northampton but the forecast doesn’t look that great.’

While Northamptonshire have made a slow start to the season – including two heavy defeats – White is expecting a tough test.

Hampshire have not visited Wantage Road in Championship cricket since 2003, although they did taste quarter-final defeat in the t20 cup back in 2009.

White said: ‘They are a good side and they have challenged in the past few seasons.

‘They have been at the top and they missed out on promotion by a point last year.

‘They’ve got a number of dangerous players and they will be looking to put in a good performance and get a result, so we’ve got to play well up there.’