Live: Sussex bat again, 335 runs behind on first innings
Delray Rawlins’s up-and-down start to the season in the LV= Insurance County Championship hit another low point yesterday when he was out for a duck as Sussex crashed to a season-low score in their group three match with Northamptonshire.
The Bermuda all-rounder, who made scores of 42 and 46 in Sussex’s five-wicket defeat by Lancashire last week, faced four balls at No 6 before he was caught at slip from what ESPNcricinfo described as “a horrible hack at a hint of width”.
The 23-year-old’s second duck in his past four innings reduced Sussex to a startling 25 for seven on a juicy track at County Ground, Northampton before a late rearguard action by Ollie Robinson got the visiting side up to 106 all out in just under three hours.
At the close, Northamptonshire had replied with 214 for five for a lead of 104 going into today’s second day. It proved to be a good toss for them to win after the start was delayed for a half-hour because of rain.
They quickly had the visitors on the back foot when Ben Sanderson got the breakthrough with the fifth ball of the match when he removed Tom Haines for a first-ball duck.
Sanderson then dismissed opener Aaron Thomason (8) and No 3 bat Stiaan van Zyl (3) in his third and fourth overs to have Sussex in early trouble at 19 for three in the seventh over.
When Rawlins was out in the fourteenth over, five wickets had fallen for nine runs, including Travis Head, the Australia Test batsman, who made nine on his county debut.
Sussex did offer some late resistance when Robinson and Stuart Meaker, batting at Nos 8 and 9, put on 56 for the eighth wicket before Meaker was dismissed for 23. Robinson, dropped three times, finished on 49 not out after facing 92 balls in 125 minutes at the crease.
Veteran seamers Sanderson and Gareth Berg took five wickets apiece as Northamptonshire used just four bowlers. Sanderson had five for 28 from 15.2 overs and Berg five for 18 off 13 overs.
Robinson’s all-round performance was the high point of a difficult day for Sussex as he then took four wickets for 31 runs as the visiting side to keep their hosts in check in the final session.
Northamptonshire have a comfortable lead thanks to Rob Keogh’s 66 and 66 not out from Saif Zaib, which backed up the early work done by Sanderson and Berg.
"It was the perfect day, and we could have still been a few more runs ahead if we had caught all our catches,“ Sanderson told the Sussex official website.
“That partnership between Rob and Saif has really set things up for us and put us in a strong position ahead of tomorrow.
"It was seaming about this morning but as the day went on it seemed to get better with the older ball and a bit of sun and wind. It has been frustrating so far this season beating the edge a lot, but it all happens quickly when it starts.
“Same with Bergy, who has bowled really well all season, so for him to get his just deserves with a five-for is just brilliant.”