NEW signing Keith Barker restored some respectability on the first day’s play at The Ageas Bowl this year.

The former Warwickshire all-rounder ended the day on 27 not out after adding an unbroken 24 with fellow new boy Jamie Fuller (10 not out), who was playing against his former teammates, as Hampshire closed on 102-7 in reply to Middlesex’s 141-3.

At one stage Hampshire were 38-6, with Liam Dawson (15) the only player to reach double figures as he and Joe Weatherley (four), James Vince (six), Sam Northeast (four), Aneurin Donald (eight) and Tom Alsop were all dismissed in the first 17 overs of the reply.

Gareth Berg (27) added 40 with Barker after Toby Roland-Jones (4-2-2-2), Steven Finn (4-0-12-1) and Tom Helm (4-1-9-2) made the early breakthroughs.

It was left to the new boys to at least ensure Hampshire reached triple figures.

Earlier, Berg took the only wicket to fall, that of Nick Gubbins (seven) with the new ball.

Sam Robson (53) and Steve Eskinazi (35) both retired and England one-day captain Eoin Morgan added 30 not out during Middlesex’s 55 overs.

Barker at least bowled ten tidy overs and Ian Holland and Ryan Stevenson were economical, but Hampshire lacked a cutting edge with the ball.

Hampshire and Middlesex are also playing at The Ageas Bowl today, from 10.30am.

Hampshire bowling: Barker 10-4-17-0, Berg 10-4-18-1, Holland 9-4-14-0, Stevenson 9-3-20-0, Dawson 4-1-9-0, Fuller 8-0-39-0, Crane 5-0-20-0.