Surrey openers put Hampshire to the sword
Steven Davies and Graeme Smith propelled Surrey to a convincing nine-wicket victory over Hampshire Royals in the Yorkshire Bank 40 Group B clash at the Kia Oval.
The left-handed pair shared in an opening stand of 162 in 21 overs - a Surrey record for any wicket against Hampshire in one-day cricket - after Zafar Ansari had helped restrict the reigning champions to a modest 228 all out with career-best figures of 4-46.
That proved far from substantial enough as Davies struck a career-best 127 not out and Smith 74 in what proved a comfortable nine-wicket win.
Surrey already had 43 on the board by the end of the fourth over in their reply, with Davies warming up by pulling James Tomlinson for six.
Davies took the hosts to three figures in addition to simultaneously bringing up his half-century, which came off 43 deliveries. Smith, meanwhile, eased to a 36-ball fifty in the 15th over.
The South Africa Test captain was caught at wide long-on off Liam Dawson for 74, although not before lifting Hamza Riazuddin back over his head for six.
Davies moved to 98 with a second six off Michael Carberry and, in the 26th over, brought up the sixth one-day hundred of his career - which came off 81 balls and included 10 fours and three sixes.
Vikram Solanki chipped in with an unbeaten 22 as he and Davies saw Surrey home with more than eight overs to spare.
After winning the toss, Hampshire were indebted to Sean Ervine's 63 from 70 deliveries for their total of 228.
James Vince and Jimmy Adams overcame the departure of Carberry, to a thin edge off Jade Dernbach, and gave the Royals some early impetus.
But, after Vince was caught at deep square-leg off Jon Lewis in the ninth over, the visitors became bogged down against the spin of Ansari and Gareth Batty.
With George Bailey and Adams both holing out to long-on, Hampshire were 89 for four in the 18th over.
Ervine then took charge, initially by moving the Royals beyond 100 with a straight six off Gary Keedy.
Dawson and Ervine added 54 in nine overs for the fifth wicket before a superb catch, at short extra-cover by Smith off Ansari, ended a resourceful knock of 36 from Dawson.
Ansari struck again when Adam Wheater was stumped two overs later, yet only after Ervine - on 31 - was dropped having bottom-edged Batty’s delivery.
After Chris Wood had been run out at the non-striker's end by Davies, Ervine brought up a 61-ball half-century with the second of two successive fours through midwicket off Dernbach.
Hampshire's innings slipped away after Ervine, looking to launch Ansari into the pavilion, was bowled by the young left-arm spinner.