A Jack Mynott inspired 57-run victory over the Hampshire Academy gave South Wilts their fifth win in eight outings – the versatile all-rounder gluing an uncertain batting performance together with an unbeaten century before going on to take two wickets with his spin bowling.
Mynott, who has just finished his finals at Loughborough University, hit 102 not out having batted throughout South Wilts’ 232 all out – a total team-mate James Hayward thought was 20 runs shy of an ideal total.
“The Academy are a decent young side and were clearly going to rely on a couple of lead performances from their more experienced players, but only Felix Organ really fired and they finished 175 all out and 57-runs short,” he said.
Hayward praised Mynott’s contribution, saying: “He’s a versatile young player. A few weeks back he was batting at seven, but with TC (Tom Cowley) absent, we promoted him and he came up with the goods with a ton which set up the win.
“It underlines the strength we have as a squad to be able to do that and Jack is certain a key component.”
Felix Organ will have been disappointed to finish on the losing Academy side having followed up a five-wicket spin haul with a classy half-century at the top of their innings.
Instead, he bowed to Mynott, who collected the individual accolades – his undefeated century gluing an uncertain South Wilts batting performance together and ensuring their 232 was a winning score.
But at least twice in a game where fortunes fluctuated, the Academy youngsters worked themselves into a good position, only to have the initiative wrested away from them.
The first occasion came in the half-hour immediately leading up to the luncheon interval after Tom Morton, with a typically punchy 56 (two sixes and seven fours), and Mynott had taken South Wilts to 103 without loss.
A clatter of five wickets for 42 runs almost gave the club’s watching vice-presidents a bout of indigestion as they tucked into their smoked salmon lunch – but Mynott ensured all would be well.
Batting in a sweater on the hottest day of the cricket calendar so far, the 23-year-old doubled his lunchtime score, enjoyed a fruitful partnership with the emerging Luke Evans (27) and went on to carry his bat for 102, twice clearing the boundary rope alongside hitting eight fours.
It was his first league century since scoring 138 against Alton in 2015.
It may have taken all 57 overs, but it later proved a match winner.
Organ’s 18-over stint yielded a 5-54 return, while Tom Scriven’s figures of 3-36 included arguably the ball of the day which accounted for James Hayward (caught behind).
The target was one that, with sensible batting, the Academy had the potential to threaten – provided they got off to a sound start.
They got to tea almost unscathed, George Metzger (23) falling (at 77-1) to the round-the-wicket spin of Mynott (2-41), just as the cucumber sandwiches were being cut.
Organ probably had to repeat his century of the previous week against Alton if the Academy were to succeed, but after the tea break he and Fletcha Middleton produced some flowing shots, moving the reply on to 111, with Mynott twice being despatched over the long-on boundary.
But when Middleton (21) fell to an outstanding low leg-side catch by Tom Morton, the Academy top order wobbled, three wickets falling for six runs and Organ departing for an accomplished 62.
A promising 111-1 became 117-4 all too quickly and once again the initiative had been lost.
It was probably too much to ask of a fledgling middle and lower-order, barely free of GCSE examinations, to pull the Academy round.
But Scott Currie (28) batted nicely – only to see batting partners Toby Albert and Jamie Regan run themselves out to miss-fields – before becoming a victim of the pacey Steve Warner, who finished with 4-43.
The Academy were eventually dismissed for 175, but left the field knowing they had given South Wilts a decent game, only for understandable bouts of inexperience to let them down.