WORCESTERSHIRE coach Bill Athey praised pace bowler Alamgir Sheriyar after his weakened team had fallen as expected to Hampshire by seven wickets at Southampton.

Hampshire had little difficulty in reaching the 91 they needed in their second innings but Sheriyar made it as uncomfortable for them as he had done in the first innings, when he bowled 40 of the 96 overs.

Hard-working Sheriyar bowled unchanged for a further ten hostile overs to dismiss John Stephenson, Giles White and Robin Smith.

This gave him match figures of ten for 172 -- a deserved reward for carrying the Worcestershire bowling almost single-handedly, providing a constant threat which Hampshire never fully mastered.

But without Graeme Hick, Phil Newport, Tom Moody, Stuart Lampitt, Phil Weston and Paul Pollard, Worcestershire found the burden too great and Hampshire won with the best part of 60 overs to spare.

Worcestershire began the last day on 76 with last pair Steve Rhodes and Chris Liptrot at the crease. The pair had already pushed the match into a fourth day with a partnership over 17 overs and they survived another four before Liptrot was given out in controversial circumstances -- standing his ground before being led away by his skipper.

Hampshire had plenty of time to reach their 91 for their second win of the season but Sheriyar made them work for it.

Athey said: "Sheriyar bowled fast and for long periods. He has always been capable of the occasional fine individual performance but now he is adding consistency to his game.

"Selectors at a higher level like to see consistency and, if he carries on like this, people will have to start taking notice."