Leg-spinner Mason Crane pleased Hampshire bowling ‘gamble’ paid off in thrilling win against Sussex
Mason Crane spoke of his relief after playing a key part in helping Hampshire past rivals Sussex in a Royal London One-Day Cup classic.
Stand-in skipper Sam Northeast’s side clung on having posted 355-5, eventually wrapping up a nine-run victory.
But it was far from plain sailing for Hampshire, who had the visitors 103-5 at one stage in their reply.
South African David Wiese smashed a masterful 171, but it proved in vain as Sussex fell short.
Hampshire had both Kyle Abbott and Crane to thank for taking them to victory.
The leg-spinner finished with figures of 4-55 while the South African seamer claimed 3-64.
Although admitting it was far from his best bowling display.
Crane was just pleased the calculated risk to hand him the ball in the final over paid dividends.
The England capped spinner dismissed both Will Beer and Mir Hamza in successive deliveries as Sussex were skittled out for 346.
He said: ‘We took a gamble with me bowling and it paid off.
‘We didn’t bowl that well. I didn’t bowl very well, I didn’t stick to my plans until the end there and I stick my hands up.
‘My thoughts when I was given the ball with three overs to go were “what is the worst that could happen”, as the rate we were going at would have lost us the game.
‘It was a great to get a wicket with the first ball but it was still a long way off and we were gambling.
‘Then the last over Abbo left me with enough, it was a great finish. It has gone so fast I haven’t really processed it.’
Crane did reserve praise for Wiese after his brilliant knock for Sussex.
The South African could count himself unfortunate to be on the losing side, after smashing 171.
And Crane felt Wiese deserved better following his batting heroics.
‘Wiese’s knock was as good a knock as you will see,’ Crane added.
‘He didn’t really deserve to lose today.
‘We thought we had the game won at 103 for five as in a big chase like that you need early wickets and we got that.
‘When you get 350 and the guys are saying it was a tricky wicket at times you don’t think it is going to finish like that.’