Hampshire leg-spinner Mason Crane salutes skipper James Vince after toasting Vitality Blast success over Essex Eagles

Mason Crane. Picture: Habibur Rahman
Mason Crane. Picture: Habibur Rahman
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Mason Crane toasted a ‘great win’ as Hampshire beat Essex Eagles in the Vitality Blast on Thursday night.

The leg-spinner took three for 24 to inspire the Ageas Bowl outfit to a seven-wicket success in the south group encounter at Chelmsford.

James Vince powered Hampshire to their victory target of 134 with an unbeaten 87 from 54 deliveries.

And with his 12 fours and three sixes, the skipper lifted his troops up to fourth place in the standings ahead of the visit of Glamorgan to the south coast on Friday night (7pm).

Crane was delighted with the success – which was his first at the famously intimidating venue.

The 22-year-old said: ‘It was a great win.

‘I had never won at Chelmsford before and it is my fifth season.

‘The guys were saying out there when we were taking wickets that it was as good a chance as any.

‘We have three games in four days and this is where T20 really feels like a momentum game.

‘We will carry on this feel into the Glamorgan match.’

Chris Wood (two for 18) had Cameron Delport caught by Liam Dawson off the first ball of the match.

But an 81-run stand for the second wicket between Tom Westley (44) and former Hampshire keeper Adam Wheater (39) had Crane & Co worried.

Dawson (two for 31) bowled the former before Crane removed Wheater, Ryan ten Doeschate and Dan Lawrence in quick succession to leave the Eagles 101 for five.

And the hosts never recovered before Vince produced a masterclass with the bat.

Crane added: ‘It felt like they were on for a big score with Wheater and Westley but we pulled it back well and finished it off.

‘I got a bit of luck with one or two of the wickets but the ball was coming out of the hand nicely and I feel like I am really in the competition now.

‘We were relaxed because we are playing with a top international player (Vince) in our team.

‘When he plays like that no-one can stop him.

‘He showed everyone just how good he is.’