Hampshire on the move as West Midlands are swept aside

Dawn Simmonds helped Hampshire defeat West Midlands Picture: Keith Woodland
Dawn Simmonds helped Hampshire defeat West Midlands Picture: Keith Woodland
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Hampshire moved into the top half of the BICC premier division with a 24-15 victory at home to West Midlands.

The hosts set the early pace after Dawn Simmonds, Maria Agozzino and Kelly Palmer gave the ladies’ B side a 3-0 lead.

West Midlands picked up two of the remaining three sets, but Nikki Stevens ensured Hampshire took a 4-2 win in the opening game.

The visitors made a better start to the men’s second-string match as they twice went ahead in the

opening stages.

But each time Hampshire immediately levelled, with both Darren Barnes and James Nicholson pulling them level.

Richie North and Linton Hickman made it 4-2 to Hampshire, before the visitors took the next set

to get back to 4-3.

The home side restored their two-set advantage through Nillson Pritchard, only for West Midlands to win the next clash and make it 5-4.

But two Hampshire wins on the trot from Mick Street and Steve Jannaway ended the men’s B tie as a contest, leaving the West Midlands to take the last set.

The game finished 7-5.

Hampshire took an 11-7 lead into the second day and they were soon well on the way to an overall victory after the ladies’ first team triumphed 5-1 thanks to Sue Lowther, Joanne Senior, Jane Monaghan, Jo Rolls and Tracy North.

The hosts only needed three more sets to win the whole match, and after losing the opener in the

men’s A matc,h Graham Chalk and Paul Winter moved them to the brink of victory.

West Midlands kept themselves in the fight by winning the next two sets, but it was a brief reprieve after Mike Gillet gave Hampshire an insurmountable lead and earned three bonus points.

The visitors then took four sets on the bounce to ensure they won the men’s A match, before Chas Barstow and Gary Stafford won the last two ties to make that scoreline more respectable at 7-5.