Delray Rawlins among the wickets as Bradley Currie enjoys dream debut for Sussex
Delray Rawlins claimed a wicket as 23-year-old Bradley Currie stole the show for Sussex on day three of their LV= Insurance County Championship second division match against Middlesex.
It proved a memorable first-class debut for the Scottish seamer, who claimed six wickets at Lord’s, producing a spell of four for 16 in the morning session to rip out Middlesex’s top order, before returning later to claim two more and end with figures of six for 93.
The hosts resumed 103 without loss and when Sam Robson (62) fired the first ball of the day through the covers, it suggested a continuation of the free-flowing runs.
However, in perfect swing conditions, left-armer Currie’s devastating spell threatened to change the entire landscape of the game.
Reward came quickly as his inswinger beat Mark Stoneman’s inside edge to trap him leg-before. It was not long before Steve Eskinazi became his next victim, an outside edge flying through to Oli Carter.
Currie’s next two wickets came in the space of four balls, dismissing former England opener Robson before Max Holden followed quickly after. The hosts were in disarray at 137 for four, leaving Pieter Malan and John Simpson to dig in.
When Simpson followed his partner to the half-century mark from 137 balls, Middlesex appeared to be inching towards safety.
However, just before the tea interval, Aristides Karvelas got a debut wicket with one that lifted and left Malan.
When teenager Danial Ibrahim had Luke Hollman well caught by Tom Clark soon after the resumption, Middlesex were still 82 short of the follow-on.
By now the floodlights were on, but Simpson and Toby Roland-Jones launched a counter-attack.
Roland-Jones showed controlled aggression, striking the ball hard and straight, while Simpson timed the ball sweetly against a tiring attack.
A hard-run two carried Simpson to his century and by the time Rawlins bowled him soon afterwards, the follow-on had been saved.
Currie, though, completed his day to remember by ending Roland-Jones’s innings before scattering Umesh Yadav’s stumps.
Barring something extraordinary on the final day, the match seems destined for a draw.