Portsmouth skipper Duggan compiles eighth Southern Premier League century – Ventnor stay top of Division 1 after spectacular Basingstoke collapse

Skipper Ben Duggan compiled his eighth Southern Premier League century as Portsmouth moved to within two points of second tier leaders Ventnor.

By Simon Carter
Sunday, 29th May 2022, 11:46 am

A fortnight after hitting an unbeaten 96 against Liphook & Ripsley, the former Hampshire Academy prospect struck 112 not out in his side’s seven-wicket romp against Alton at St Helens.

It was his third SPL ton for Portsmouth and his highest league score since an undefeated 121 for the Academy against New Milton five years ago.

Duggan’s latest century came after his side had let Alton off the hook somewhat. After reducing the visitors to 98-7, Alton were allowed to reach 209-8 thanks to a 108-run stand for the eighth wicket between Howard Gadsby (57 not out) and No 9 Toby Salmon (50).

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Ben Duggan struck an unbeaten 112 as Portsmouth defeated Alton. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

Henry Woolf (3-47) was Portsmouth’s leading wicket-taker, but Sri Lankan overseas all-rounder Minhaj Jalill - on his first XI debut - returned 2-20 from a tidy 10-over spell.

In reply, Duggan – now averaging 236 from his last three SPL knocks - and Jack Marston (29) put on 89 for the first wicket before the latter was bowled by Scott Myers in the 23rd over. That brought in Jalill, who promptly saw his stumps rearranged by Myers first ball.

James Christian (35) survived the hat-trick delivery and went on to add 82 for the third wicket as Portsmouth claimed a third win in four SPL matches.

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Duggan struck 15 fours in his 146-ball knock, and there were eight balls when his side reached their target.

Ventnor remained top after Will Mew’s career best figures had instigated a sensational Basingstoke & North Hants collapse at Steephill.

After having reached 51-1, the visitors lost nine wickets for just 14 runs to be rushed out for 65, Mew bagging 5-7.

Sri Lankan Dineth Thimodya was in no mood to take his time in reply, hitting five fours and three sixes in a 26-ball 40 as Ventnor won by nine wickets inside 10 overs.

Sarisbury Athletic suffered a second successive Division 1 loss, beaten by 14 runs at Rowledge.

Opening bowlers Jacob Harris (3-42) and Australian Ronan DeGrussa (3-36) - along with Sam Hill (3-35) - combined to restrict Rowledge to 188 all out.

In reply, Sarisbury got off to a good start - openers Cameron Grierson (39) and Tom Mills (15) putting on 60.

But in next to no time, they had both been dismissed by David Lloyd (4-30) and it was 63-3 when Sam Floyd departed for a duck.

Skipper Josh Hill (41) top scored but Sarisbury lurched to 136-7 when he and Harris (0) fell in quick succession. Rob Franklin hit 23 but the visitors were dismissed for 174.