All-round Gidman boosts Gloucestershire
Will Gidman bowled Gloucestershire into a powerful position at the Ageas Bowl with a five-wicket haul and then held up Hampshire with the bat on another day hit by rain.
Gidman took 5-48 with his medium pace as Gloucestershire shot Hampshire out for 199 after half a day had been lost to the weather.
Gidman’s performance helped give Gloucestershire a first-innings lead of 115 and this had been extended to 244 by the close of the third day on a wicket still helping the pace bowlers.
When Gloucestershire batted a second time they slumped to 71 for five, but then Gidman joined Ian Cockbain in a crucial unbeaten stand of 58 for the sixth wicket in 17 overs.
At the close Gloucestershire were 129 for five with Cockbain defiant on 27 and Gidman offering valuable support with 23.
Hampshire resumed after the morning had been washed out at 182 for seven in their first innings and soon lost their remaining wickets in eight overs for 17 runs.
Gidman had Chris Wood caught in the slips for 21 and then trapped Danny Briggs leg before two runs later. David Payne finished it off by bowling Hamza Riazuddin for his first success of the match.
First innings centurion Chris Dent did not last long a second time, caught at second slip by Liam Dawson off Wood and Gloucestershire’s top order wobbled under pressure.
Riazuddin had Richard Coughtrie lbw, Alex Gidman caught and then induced Hamish Marshall to edge to wicketkeeper Michael Bates.
David Balcombe, who took eight wickets in the first innings, sent back Dan Housego in the 24th over to leave Gloucestershire five down and 186 in front.
It was then that bowling hero Will Gidman came out to join Cockbain and the sixth-wicket pair gradually repaired the earlier damage with a cautious stand surrounded by a ring of close fielders.
At stumps each had hit three boundaries and had survived some uneasy moments to put Gloucestershire into a powerful position going into the last day.
Riazuddin, who failed to take a wicket in Gloucestershire’s first innings while Balcombe was recording career-best figures, finished the day with 3-30 from 10 overs.