DURHAM captain Dale Benkenstein admitted his side came up short in their Clydesdale Bank 40 four-wicket defeat against Hampshire Royals at the Ageas Bowl yesterday.
Dynamos posted 200-7 from their 40 overs, a total which looked out of their reach early on before Gordon Muchall rescued the innings with 96.
Muchall came to the crease with the visitors struggling on 41-3, but hit five fours and two sixes in a defiant knock, though he was given little support.
Benkenstein said: “From where we were to actually get to 200 was down to a brilliant innings from Muchy. But we did feel when we were out there that they had one or two wickets too many in hand.”
And so it proved with a perfectly-timed half century from former Durham man Simon Katich seeing the hosts over the winning line with 10 balls to spare.
Benkenstein admitted that it was always going to be difficult to defend a total of 200, and was maybe a little bit short of where they needed to be at the end of their innings.
“If we had a few more wickets in hand we thought 220 would have been a good score,” he said. “We were a few (runs) light.”
Benkenstein did share an important stand of 83 with Muchall for the fifth wicket and Paul Collingwood contributed 28 before he was run out.
Hampshire’s reply got off to a solid start as Adams and fellow opener James Vince put on 73 for the first wicket. Spinner Scott Borthwick ended the stand when he removed Adams for 33 and later caused concern in the Hampshire camp by coming back to dismiss Sean Ervine and Liam Dawson.
But all the while Katich was in command, so were Hampshire.
The Aussie twice hit Borthwick for six and did the same to Ben Stokes before finding the perfect ally in Dimitri Mascarenhas.
With 30 required off 29 balls at the fall of Dawson’s wicket at the start of the 36th over, Katich and Mascarenhas went on the offensive.
Mascarenhas lifted Borthwick for another six to take Hampshire in sight of victory before Borthwick trapped the Hampshire captain lbw for 22.
The sixth wicket pair had put on 28 in 15 balls and with Hampshire needing two runs, the rest was a formality.
Durham return to County Championship action on Wednesday, when they face Sussex at Arundel.
Collingwood, who returned to the side yesterday after more than a month out with a broken hand, looks set to lead the side for the first time.