ANDOVER will look to get themselves back in the Southern League Division One promotion shake-up, as they entertain lowly Portsmouth.

Then on Sunday, the side will be hoping for T20 Cup glory when they travel to Tichborne Park in the first round.

Last Saturday, Andover made the long trip across the water to the Isle of Wight to play against Ventnor. Andover, who had their last game washed out by the weather, were looking to build on two good wins previously.

Skipper, Matt Hooper, won his fifth toss in a row and had no hesitation in electing to bat first on a good looking pitch. Andover openers, Ali Hooper and Asher Hart, started the innings in customary attacking fashion.

Hooper creamed the second ball for four with a textbook cover drive and Andover made a promising start. Andover got to 22 in quick fashion with Hooper adding a straight six to his account before being caught behind.

Andrew Duckworth, playing in only his second Southern League match, joined Hart and both looked to keep the momentum in Andover’s favour.

Unfortunately, Hart followed Hooper in exactly the same fashion and now the town club were on the back foot at 24-2.

With the Ventnor bowlers tails up Duckworth then fell shortly after and Harry Blackburn also came and went without troubling the scorers.

Andover were reeling and the misery was deepened when wicket-keeper Matt Knight was run out after a mix up with Glyn Treagus. This brought captain Matt Hooper to the middle and along with Treagus they set about rebuilding the Andover innings.

This pair stayed together for the biggest partnership of the Andover innings, albeit only 23 runs.

Treagus was caught and Richard Taylor added a few lusty blows before departing. Mike Adams and Luke Graham also added a couple of boundaries alongside Hooper and Andover passed a 100.

The final pair of Hooper and Aidan Jansen didn’t last much longer than those before them as Hooper was the last man to depart for a top score of 23.

Andover ended their innings on a disappointing 113 from 32 of their allotted 50 overs.

Defending such a low total, the Andover bowlers knew they had to make early inroads into the Ventnor batting order.

After a quiet start with the Andover opening bowlers not giving away any runs, the town side got the early breakthrough they were after.

A suicidal run was taken to Duckworth who calmly through into the safe hands of Knight and Ventnor were one wicket down without scoring.

Ventnor then played carefully whilst also hitting the odd boundary and they crept into the twenties. Hart then produced a corking delivery and the batsman could only lift it to Jansen at square leg.

Hart and Adams were replaced by Graham and Jansen who went after further wickets. Unfortunately Graham was injured in only his second over.

Spin was introduced as Hooper brought himself into the attack but despite all the Andover bowlers toiling hard no breakthrough could be found.

Ventnor played sensibly, mixing in some big shots alongside patient defence. Ventnor cruised past the Andover total in 22nd over for the loss of only two wickets.

Andover spent the ferry ride home ruing a missed opportunity of recording three victories on the bounce.