County Championship: Tom Alsop ton gives Hampshire good start v Warwickshire

Tom Alsop
Tom Alsop's only previous first-class hundred came against Surrey in September 2016
Specsavers County Championship Division One, Edgbaston (day one)
Hampshire 291-6: Alsop 131*, Donald 75; Hannon-Dalby 4-58
Warwickshire: Yet to bat
Warwickshire 2 pts, Hampshire 2 pts
Match scorecard

Tom Alsop's second first-class hundred helped Hampshire end day one on 291-6 against Warwickshire at Edgbaston.

While many of his team-mates struggled to build a meaningful innings, the left-hander patiently made his way to a century off 203 balls and was on a career-best 131 not out at the close.

Aneurin Donald (75) accelerated the scoring after tea with a 41-ball fifty.

Olly Hannon-Dalby (4-58) and captain Jeetan Patel (2-72, with his spin) were the Bears' only wicket-takers.

Their efforts meant the hosts are still well in the match, despite Alsop ending a wait of more than two years to add to his maiden Championship century.

Pace bowler Hannon-Dalby began his opening spell with four consecutive maidens and was rewarded with the first wicket when he trapped Joe Weatherley lbw for 12.

He removed Hampshire captain Sam Northeast (22) in the same fashion after lunch but, by then, wicketkeeper-batsman Alsop was well set at the crease and on course for three figures.

Donald, making his first Championship appearance for Hampshire, contributed 75 in a sixth-wicket partnership of 84 with Alsop, who will resume alongside Gareth Berg on the second morning with a third batting point just nine runs away.

Hampshire, who had hoped to have India Test batsman Ajinkya Rahane making his debut, were also without Aiden Markram, who has linked up with South Africa's World Cup squad, while county captain James Vince is back on England duty after being released for Sunday's One-Day Cup semi-final win over Lancashire.

Warwickshire fast bowler Olly Hannon-Dalby told BBC WM:

"It was just a good solid day of four-day cricket. It's in the balance right now. It is a good pitch, the way they always are here.

"As a bowler, you had to be patient and bash away in the right area. There wasn't a great deal of swing with the new ball this morning. I managed to get a bit of swing in the second spell which was good but I just tried to bowl nice and tight.

"We have got bowlers with a lot more pace than me, people like Henry Brookes, so my job in the attack is just to be as boring as possible and try to keep that run-rate down."

Hampshire batsman Aneurin Donald:

"It was quite difficult at stages. We found it quite tough to score at the start but the foundation was laid there by Tommy. He played an unbelievable knock and that allowed me to come in and bat around him.

"With a few guys missing he got shuffled up the order and did a fantastic job and at the end of the day we have got to be pleased walking off with that total.

"For me it was just one of those days. I struck the ball nicely from the start and that allowed me to take a bit of pressure off Tommy. Him holding the anchor role at one end allowed me to come out and play with way I did."

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