Prolific Adams underpins victory
Jimmy Adams, the highest run-maker in the Friends Provident t20, took his aggregate to 551 as Hampshire Royals coasted to a six-wicket victory over Middlesex Panthers at Uxbridge, which boosts their hopes of reaching the quarter-finals.
Owais Shah hit 80 off only 52 balls with five sixes and five fours for Middlesex, but he got scant support and Hampshire were always on course for a target of 165 once some sloppy fielding had helped Adams and Michael Carberry put on 89 in 10 overs for the first wicket.
Carberry, badly dropped at backward square-leg off Gareth Berg when he had made 13, scored 41 off 28 balls with two sixes and four fours before he cut Shah’s first ball to backward point.
Adams, put down at short third man off Neil Dexter on 45, had made 64 off 44 balls with 10 fours when he hoisted Berg to long-on.
Hampshire stumbled briefly when James Vince sliced Berg to short extra-cover and Abdul Razzaq ran himself out, but Sean Ervine and Neil McKenzie saw them home with nine balls to spare.
The conditions were made for high scoring with the pitch flat and the parched outfield fast and bumpy, but Middlesex made a sluggish start after wining the toss.
Dexter was caught at extra-cover off Chris Wood in the second over, David Warner struggled to 18 off 17 balls before pushing Dan Christian to mid-off and Dawid Malan soon pulled Ervine to deep square-leg.
Scott Newman then fell leg before to Dominic Cork, Berg lifted Danny Briggs to midwicket and Tyron Henderson drove an Ervine full toss to long-off to leave Middlesex struggling at 105 for six in the 16th over.
Shah cut loose in the next over, reaching his fifty from 39 balls with two sixes and five fours and going on to make another 30 off only 13 balls.
He hit three more sixes before holing out to long-off, trying to hit Wood for another maximum off the last ball of the innings.
Ben Scott, who has returned to Middlesex after a loan spell with Worcestershire, joined him in a partnership of 59 – a record for Middlesex’s seventh wicket in this competition – in only four overs but a total of 164 for seven was never going to be enough.