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MATCH RESULT - SUSSEX WIN BY 7 WICKETS

Middlesex 75 all out & 378 all out - 3 points

Sussex 309 all out & 145/3 - 22 points

Sussex survived a determined recovery by Middlesex to beat them by seven wickets inside three days at Hove. It was their first victory in the Specsavers County Championship Division Two since they beat the same opposition at Lord’s at the start of June.

Middlesex had conceded a first innings advantage of 234 but some rearguard batting in their second innings, and particularly a last wicket stand of 79 in 16 overs between Steve Finn and Tim Murtagh, saw them reach a total of 378, setting a brittle Sussex batting line-up 145 to win.

That target looked even trickier when Phil Salt, driving loosely, was bowled between bat and pad by Tim Murtagh for 10, Tom Haines received a bail-trimmer from Steve Finn which angled into him before straightening and the out of form Harry Finch was out for a pair – his second in as many matches - when he edged a sharp ball from Murtagh into the slips.

That left Sussex struggling at 44 for three. But an unbroken century partnership between Alex Carey (69) and Luke Wells (48) saw Sussex home. The contest ended when spinner Nathan Sowter came on at 88 for three and Carey hit his first three deliveries for legside sixes, followed by another later in the over.

But the Sussex hero was still Ollie Robinson, who followed his 8-34 first innings return with another six wickets to give him a match haul of 14 for 135, the best by a Sussex bowler since Ian Thomson took 15 at Worthing in 1964.

Middlesex had started the day on 149 for four, still 85 runs behind. Sam Robson had added just seven runs to his score when he played forward to Robinson and edged the ball to Finch at second slip. But it would be the only Middlesex wicket to fall in the morning session.

The clean-striking Simpson went on to complete his fifty off 71 deliveries, with eight fours. At 247 for five, a lead of 13 runs and with four over remaining before lunch, Sussex took the new ball. Their rewards, though, would come after the interval.

Simpson had added just two runs to his lunch score when he shouldered arms to Robinson and had his off-stump knocked back for 89. Then Middlesex lost two more in two overs. Toby Roland-Jones was smartly stumped by Ben Brown off the bowling of Haines when he lifted his back foot. And it was 278 for eight when Nathan Sowter was caught behind off Robinson’s bowling.

Middlesex lost their ninth wicket at 299 when James Harris fell to the same Brown-Robinson combination for 66. It all might have been a bit more straightforward for Sussex if Harris had not been dropped on six, a dolly to Haines in the gully.

That miss felt even more painful for Sussex as the last wicket pair of Finn and Murtagh defied the bowlers. Finn’s innings of 56 from 65 balls, with six fours and two sixes, equalled his career best, the other being a five-hour vigil for England against New Zealand in Dunedin in 2012-13.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


TEA - DAY THREE

Middlesex 75 all out & 378 all out

Sussex 309 all out

Sussex needed 145 to beat Middlesex at tea after being frustrated by a last wicket stand of 79 between Steve Finn and Tim Murtagh.

Middlesex led by only 18 runs when they lunched on 252 for five. And Sussex must have been hopeful of a quick victory when they made swift inroads into the middle and late middle order batting at the start of the afternoon session.

John Simpson batted admirably for a clean-hitting half-century. But he had added just two runs to his lunch score when he shouldered arms to Ollie Robinson and had his off-stump knocked back for 89.

Middlesex then lost two wickets in as many overs when Toby Roland-Jones was stumped by Ben Brown off the bowling of Tom Haines and it was 278 for eight when Nathan Sowter was caught behind off Robinson’s bowling. The same combination accounted for James Harris for 66 but then a fighting last pair stand raised Middlesex hopes. Robinson’s match figures of 14 for 135 were the best for Sussex since 1964.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


LUNCH - DAY THREE

Middlesex 75 all out & 252/5

Sussex 309 all out

Middlesex, facing an uphill task to save their match against Sussex in the second division of the Specsavers County Championship, lost only one wicket before lunch at Hove.

They resumed on 149 for four, still 85 runs behind Sussex, with Sam Robson 61 not out and John Simpson unbeaten on 30. Robson survived a torrid opening over from Ollie Robinson. But he had added just seven runs to his score when, after half an hour’s play, he played forward to Robinson and edged the ball to Harry Finch at second slip.

But the impressive Simpson looked untroubled and went on to complete his fifty off 71 deliveries, with eight fours. When Will Beer entered the attack he started with a full toss which Simpson drove for four to take Middlesex past Sussex. Beer injured his hand attempting to stop the ball and had to leave the field. Sussex took the new ball at 247 for five but in the four overs available with it before lunch were unable to force another breakthrough.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


STUMPS - DAY TWO

Middlesex 75 all out & 149/4

Sussex 309 all out

Sussex took two crucial wickets in the final hour of the second day to strengthen their position in the crucial Specsavers County Championship Division Two match against Middlesex at Hove.

Trailing by 234, Middlesex had reached 105 for 2 when they lost Dawid Malan (19) and Paul Stirling for a second-ball duck in successive overs. Their hopes of setting Sussex a testing target on a good pitch now largely rest with opener Sam Robson who reached a 108-ball half-century and was 61 not out at stumps with his side 145 for 4, still 89 behind.

Robson and Nick Gubbins had rebuilt after Steve Eskinazi was bowled by Ollie Robinson off the third ball of the innings, adding 68 either side of tea. But Jared Warner, the Yorkshire seamer who has joined Sussex on loan for the rest of the season, had Gubbins (28) well taken at second slip by Harry Finch before Sussex struck twice in the space of six balls.

Dawid Malan (28) played on to give Sussex debutant Elliott Hooper, a 23-year-old left-arm spinner from Hastings making his first-class debut, a memorable first wicket. Robinson then pegged back Paul Stirling’s off stump for a second-ball duck to take his 50th Championship scalp and complete his second ten-wicket haul of the season against Middlesex.

Earlier, Will Beer made 77 as Sussex’s last three wickets put on 151 to take them to 309.

Middlesex had fought back during the first hour as Sussex, who had resumed on 128 for 3, lost four wickets for 23 – three of them to Toby Roland-Jones who now has 24 victims in his last five Championship innings after finishing with 5 for 70.

The seamer picked up Luke Wells (62) and Alex Carey (56) after they shared 125 for the fourth wicket. Wells clipped to mid-wicket and Carey was taken at slip driving loosely before David Wiese was caught behind for a duck off a ball which rose sharply to give Roland-Jones his third wicket in four overs.

Tim Murtagh picked up Ben Brown (3) caught behind off a top-edged slash but from 151 for 7, Robinson and Beer counter-attacked superbly.

Robinson contributed 37 to an eighth-wicket stand of 88 after being caught on six off a Roland-Jones no ball while Hooper scored 20 as 41 were added for the ninth wicket. To add to Middlesex’s frustrations, Steve Finn had to go off for treatment after being hit on the face fielding a drive by Beer, who was last out after hitting 13 fours and a six from 110 balls faced.

Robinson, who took 8 for 34 in the first innings, then struck with his third ball when Steve Eskinazi was bowled through the gate for four. Robson and Gubbins rebuilt before Sussex landed those late blows.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


TEA - DAY TWO

Middlesex 75 all out & 36/1

Sussex 309 all out

Sussex’s lower order batsmen put them in a strong position against Middlesex as they took a first-innings lead of 234 on day 2 at Hove.

Their last three wickets more than doubled their score as they recovered from 151 for 7 to 309 all out, thanks mainly to Will Beer’s 77.

Beer, who came in after Sussex had lost four wickets for 23 runs during the first hour, was last out after hitting 13 fours and a six from 110 balls in a spirited counter-attack.

He was well supported by Ollie Robinson (37) in an eighth-wicket stand of 88 while debutant Elliott Hooper contributed 20 as 41 were added for the ninth wicket. Toby Roland-Jones finished with 5 for 70 but team-mate Steve Finn had to go off for treatment after being struck on the face fielding a shot by Beer at long on.

Robinson, who took 8 for 34 in the first innings, then struck with his third ball when Steve Eskinazi was bowled through the gate for 4 but Sam Robson and Nick Gubbins stood firm to take Middlesex to 36 for 1 at tea, still 198 behind.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


LUNCH - DAY TWO

Middlesex 75 all out

Sussex 232/7

The day after taking a career-best 8 for 34, Ollie Robinson showed his ability with the bat to lead Sussex’s fightback after they had lost four wickets for 23 on the second day against Middlesex at Hove.

Robinson and Will Beer shared an unbroken eighth wicket stand of 81 to take Sussex to 232 for 7 at lunch, a lead of 157.

Toby Roland-Jones appeared to have put Middlesex back in contention when he picked up Luke Wells (62) and Alex Carey (56) after they shared 125 for the fourth wicket, and David Wiese (0). Wells clipped to mid-wicket, Carey was taken at slip driving loosely and Wiese (0) beaten by one which rose sharply.

Ben Brown (3) was caught behind off Tim Murtagh but from 151 for 7, Robinson and Beer counter-attacked superbly with Robinson hitting Steve Finn for three successive fours at one stage as the Sussex pair scored at more than five runs an over. Robinson was 37 and Beer 42 at lunch.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


STUMPS - DAY ONE

Middlesex 75 all out

Sussex 128/3

Sussex seamer Ollie Robinson took career-best figures of 8 for 34 against Middlesex on a remarkable first day in the Specsavers County Championship match at Hove.

The 25-year-old, who is on England’s radar after making his Lions debut last month, took the first eight wickets to fall as Middlesex slumped to 44 for 8 before recovering partially to 75 all out. Sussex were 128 for 3 at stumps, a lead of 53.

Robinson’s return was the in the County Championship this season and enhanced the seamer’s already remarkable record against Middlesex. In three matches he has taken 46 wickets including 18 this season – with power to add in the second innings.

Robinson walked off at tea to a standing ovation and was presented with his county cap by Sussex skipper Ben Brown. His figures are the best by a Sussex bowler at Hove since Ted James took 9 for 60 against Yorkshire in 1955.

Middlesex had been put in following a delayed start at 2.30pm because of morning rain and Robinson was on a roll straight away when he picked up a wicket with his first ball as Sam Robson edged to wicketkeeper Ben Brown pushing forward.

Bowling an exemplary off-stump line and length and finding just enough seam movement, six of his victims were caught behind the wicket with Harry Finch claiming two catches at second slip including Eskinazi and James Harris who departed in the space of three balls in the 13th over.

His second victim Nick Gubbins was his 200th in the County Championship and when Nathan Sowter became his eighth in his ninth over Robinson was on course to take all ten wickets. Such was his control, he was only hit for one boundary in front of square. He now has 48 Championship wickets in just eight games at 15.48 this season.

Robinson was among the first to congratulate Tom Haines when he had Toby Roland Jones caught by Finch driving at an away-swinger and after last man Tim Murtagh had slogged 20 – along with Eskinazi (24) the only batsman to reach double figures – leg-spinner Will Beer ended the innings when Steven Finn (5) padded up. Middlesex’s total was the lowest Championship score at Hove since Sussex were dismissed for 71 by Gloucestershire 19 years ago.

Both sides need to win to keep their second division promotion hopes alive and Sussex were soon in trouble themselves at 15 for 3. Phil Salt clipped the third ball from Tim Murtagh to mid-wicket, Haines drove loosely at Toby Roland-Jones and was taken at gully and Roland-Jones had a second wicket when Harry Finch was leg before for a duck.

But Luke Wells and Australian Alex Carey, who was making his Championship debut, put on an unbeaten 113 for the fourth wicket with Wells reaching his 50 just before the close when he drove Nathan Sowter through the off side for his ninth boundary. He will resume on 52 while Carey is unbeaten on 46.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


TEA - DAY ONE

Middlesex 75 all out

Sussex seamer Ollie Robinson took career-best figures of 8 for 34 as Middlesex were bowled out for 75 in 21.4 overs on the first day of their crucial County Championship Division Two match at Hove.

The 25-year-old was on course to take all ten having picking up the first eight wickets after Middlesex had been put in following a delayed start at 2.30pm due to morning rain.

Tom Haines and Will Beer each picked up a wicket with only Steve Eskinazi (24) and last man Tim Murtagh, who finished 20 not out, getting into double figures for Middlesex.

Robinson, who made his England Lions debut last month, now has 48 Championship wickets in eight games this season and he was presented with his county cap after leaving the field to a standing ovation. He has taken 18 of those wickets against Middlesex after picking up ten at Lord's earlier in the season.

The 25-year-old was on a roll straight away when he took a wicket with his first ball as Sam Robson edged to wicketkeeper Ben Brown pushing forward. Bowling an exemplary off-stump line and length and finding just enough seam movement, seven of his victims were caught behind the wicket with Harry Finch claiming three catches at second slip including Eskinazi and James Harris who departed in the space of three balls in the 13th over.

His second victim Nick Gubbins was his 200th in the County Championship.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.


LUNCH - DAY ONE

Morning rain meant no play before lunch in the crucial Specsavers County Championship match between Sussex and Middlesex at Hove.

Mopping up began shortly after the scheduled 11am start and after a lengthy inspection at 1.30pm by umpires Jeff Evans and Ben Debenham, they decided that play could begin at 2.30pm.

Two areas at the sea end were a cause for concern and the boundary rope has been brought in a couple of yards as a result.

Match updates provided by ECB Reporters Network.

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