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Agathangelou takes his chance

Late call-up Andrea Agathangelou led the resistance for Lancashire after Hampshire had threatened to take control of their LV= County Championship Division Two match on the opening day at the Ageas Bowl.

David Balcombe claimed five wickets as the hosts made Lancashire struggle following Glen Chapple’s decision to bat.

However, Agathangelou - a 23-year-old South Africa-born Cypriot making his first appearance of the championship season after Simon Katich suffered a blow to the head during pre-match nets - scored an unbeaten 93 to help the visitors to the close on 252 for nine.

Katich had to be taken to hospital after being struck on the temple during the warm-up, the ball finding a gap in the grille. The experienced Australian was later able to rejoin his teammates at their hotel.

Aganthangelou was not the only player to enjoy a notable performance as Lancashire went in search of their third successive Division Two victory.

Hampshire opening bowler Balcombe could hardly have made a worse start; after three legitimate deliveries with the new ball he had already conceded 21 runs.

Yet Balcombe eventually recovered his poise and finished with 5-92 as Hampshire got on top from the moment Stephen Moore edged James Tomlinson to James Vince at third slip with the score on 54.

Balcombe had Karl Brown caught in the slips and then sent back Steven Croft, Gareth Cross, Wayne White and Kyle Hogg in the afternoon session.

However, Luke Procter battled hard, his 53 taking 125 balls, and Aganthangelou recorded his first championship half-century as Lancashire dodged the showers to make a respectable first-innings total.

By stumps, Agathangelou had faced 156 balls and was in sight of a maiden hundred.

Left arm pace bowler Tomlinson was the other Hampshire bowler to pose problems, dismissing Moore and then Ashwell Prince to a catch by Liam Dawson in the cordon to finish the day with 2-42.