Delray Rawlins scores 46 as Sussex lose again from winning position
Lancashire completed a five-wicket win over Sussex shortly after lunch on the final day of their LV= Insurance County Championship group three match at the 1st Central County Ground in Hove yesterday.
Sussex, with Delray Rawlins leading the batting with 46 in their second-innings 154, had a slight upper hand after the first two days of the match. However, Lancashire turned things around on the third day when they dismissed the home side cheaply to set themselves a target of 253 for victory.
Overnight on Saturday, Sussex still had some hope of a final twist to the four-day match after they claimed a second Lancashire wicket late in the day as the visitors finished on 124 for two, still 129 from victory.
Lancashire wrapped up victory with almost two full sessions to spare yesterday, scoring the winning runs just after lunch as Keaton Jennings, the England opener, led them to their third straight win with 91 not out to go with his first-innings 60. The win keeps them top of the group.
Sussex were still in the match in the morning session after taking two quick wickets to put Lancashire at 153 for four. Rawlins took a tumbling catch at mid-wicket to dismiss Liam Livingston for three for the fourth wicket.
However, a fifth-wicket stand of 71 between Jennings and Josh Bohannon put Lancashire on the brink of victory. Bohannon dominated that 65-minute stand, with Jennings, hitting 46 off 53 balls, including eight fours and a six.
Jennings’s patient contribution was no less important, however, as he faced 194 balls in 264 minutes at the crease and hit six boundaries.
Bohannon, meanwhile, attacked with abandon. The No 6 batsman flicked Jamie Atkins to fine leg for four and guided Henry Crocombe to third man for another boundary. Then he pulled Crocombe to backward of square for another four, before pulling Delray Rawlins over mid-wicket for six.
His aggressive innings came to an end when he pulled Crocombe to long leg, where Tom Clark took a fine catch. At lunch, Lancashire were 228 for five, still needing 25 runs, and they got there 27 minutes after the break.
“It was a fantastic performance by us to come from behind, an unbelievable effort and just what we needed,” Dane Vilas, the Lancashire captain, said.
“We talked about what we had to do. We knew we had to turn things around to get a result, and that’s exactly what we did on days three and four.
“They were our moving days. All our bowlers bowled really well and I’m delighted for them.”
Ben Brown, the Sussex captain, was disappointed with their second straight loss in the same manner after establishing a sizeable first-innings lead. “I have feelings of déjà vu after last week’s defeat by Yorkshire, and now this,” he said.
“I’m ultimately disappointed that we didn’t have the experience to ram home the advantage we gained in the first innings. We didn’t do anything that wrong but Lancashire bowled really well and we couldn’t get the 200 runs or so in our second innings to put the game out of sight. And then the experience of their batting really showed.”
Brown did find some positives in the defeat, however. “On the plus side we had an amazing debut by Jamie Atkins, who has pace and bounce and can swing the ball,” he said.
“I was really excited about his debut and I’m really pleased for him, while Stuart Meaker really raised his game and showed his experience.
“Then there was Jack Carson. The pitch didn’t offer us as much spin as last week but he was outstanding again.”
Rawlins led the Sussex batting in the second innings, scoring 46 off 78 balls in 119 minutes at the crease, hitting five fours. The left-hander came in at 38 for four and was ninth out on 148 as Sussex were dismissed in 46.1 overs.
The Bermuda all-rounder fell just short of a half-century for the second time in the match, this time bowled after not offering a stroke to a ripping leg break from wrist spinner Matt Parkinson that turned sharply from outside off stump. Parkinson also dismissed him for 42 in the first innings.
Carson led the Sussex bowling with three for 45 from 24 overs, while Rawlins bowled three overs for 15 runs.
Sussex’s next match is away to Northamptonshire, starting on Thursday.