Rawlins picks out positives
Delray Rawlins, the Sussex all-rounder, hopes to build on an encouraging batting display in his team’s recent outing against Essex in the Bob Willis Trophy.
The left-handed batsman led the Sussex resistance in their second innings at the 1st Central County Ground in Hove with an aggressive 40 from 42 deliveries in 73 minutes batting at No 7.
Rawlins, whose swashbuckling innings featured back-to-back sixes off of Simon Harmer’s off spin, added 40 for the sixth wicket with Aaron Thomason to lead a fightback after coming to the crease in the 38th over with Sussex wobbling at 79 for five.
“It was nice to get a few runs in the seconds innings, I feel like now that’s something to build on for myself,” Rawlins told The Royal Gazette.
Sussex collapsed once the stand between Rawlins and Thomason was broken as their last five wickets fell for 22 runs in eight overs.
South Group leaders Essex won the four-day match by three wickets with 6.1 overs to spare on the final day to maintain their perfect record after three rounds and on course to reach the final at Lord’s next month.
The defeat was Sussex’s second on the trot having suffered an innings and 25-run defeat in their previous outing against Kent.
But despite coming up short, Rawlins says there are positives he and his team-mates can take away from the match.
“It was a tough pill to swallow, but it was nice to bounce back in that fashion after last week’s defeat [against Kent],” he said.
“We are improving as a team and everyone is improving individually with their skill, so we are in a pretty good place.”
The 22-year-old rejoined his Sussex team-mates last month having returned home because of the Covid-19 outbreak, which cut short the county’s preseason tour of South Africa and delayed the English season.
Meanwhile, Sussex’s defeat against Essex arrived the same day that it was announced that Jason Gillespie, the team’s coach and former Australian fast bowler, will leave the club at the end of the season to take up a role with the South Australian Cricket Association.
“It’s going to be sad to see him go,” Rawlins said. “He’s been outstanding in his time with us and helped myself and a lot of players at the club.”
Sussex are away to Middlesex in their next outing in the Bob Willis Trophy from August 22 to 25.
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