The ArgusSussex face huge battle to avoid defeat (From The Argus)

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Sussex face huge battle to avoid defeat

The Argus: Chris Jordan is out in the first innings Chris Jordan is out in the first innings

Sussex are facing the prospect of their first defeat of the season after losing 15 wickets on the third day of their Championship clash with Somerset at Hove.

The division one leaders were forced to follow-on after being dismissed for 142 in their first innings and reached the close on 162-6, still trailing by 68.

Lewis Gregory has been the chief destroyer for Somerset taking seven wickets in the match so far with only Luke Wells and Ed Joyce showing any resistance.

Wells carried his bat in the first innings – the first Sussex batsman to do so in ten years – and was unbeaten on 79 when he ran out of partners in the afternoon session.

Joyce will need to do the same in the second innings if Sussex are to stand a chance of saving the game and was 76 not out at stumps.

Gregory ripped through the Sussex batting in the morning after Alfonso Thomas had bowled Mike Yardy for ten in the fourth over of the day.

The all-rounder picked up the wickets of Rory Hamilton-Brown (0), Matt Machan (10) and Ben Brown (4) in a fiery spell down the hill to leave Sussex reeling on 61-5.

He returned to remove Chris Jordan for five after lunch and James Anyon for two with Jamie Overton picking up the wickets of Ashar Zaidi – much to the batsman’s disgust – and Steve Magoffin.

Jon Lewis added 36 for the final wicket with Wells who followed up his half century in the second innings at Edgbaston by batting for 168 balls.

Somerset skipper Marcus Trescothick had no hesitation in enforcing the follow-on and was rewarded when Wells was finally dismissed as Sussex reached tea on 62-1.

Alfonso Thomas then picked up the wickets of Yardy (11) and Hamilton-Brown (4) before Gregory got rid of Machan (7) and Brown (1).

Zaidi put on 42 with Joyce for the sixth wicket before being superbly caught by sub wicketkeeper Alex Barrow off the bowling of Jamie Overton.

Joyce was still there at the end with Jordan (6 not out) but will need to make his fourth first class century of the season if Sussex are to avoid defeat.

Comments (11)

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6:50pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Neville says...

Very poor batting performance apart from Joyce and Wells,poor shot selection and our batting is very weak and brittle. We should try and get a decent batsman.
Zaidi is definitely not up to it and why on earth does he bat so high up,should be about 9 or 10.
Does anyone know who is responsible for our batting coaching,it is the repeat of last season where we can never post decent first innings scores.
Our record at Hove is not good over the past few matches.
Very poor batting performance apart from Joyce and Wells,poor shot selection and our batting is very weak and brittle. We should try and get a decent batsman. Zaidi is definitely not up to it and why on earth does he bat so high up,should be about 9 or 10. Does anyone know who is responsible for our batting coaching,it is the repeat of last season where we can never post decent first innings scores. Our record at Hove is not good over the past few matches. Neville
  • Score: 0

7:55pm Tue 29 Apr 14

fratsomrover says...

The heart of our batting, No's 3,4,5 & 6 scored 24 between them in the first innings and 23 between them in the second.
They are at least consistent !!
Surely we have some batsmen somewhere in the squad ?
The heart of our batting, No's 3,4,5 & 6 scored 24 between them in the first innings and 23 between them in the second. They are at least consistent !! Surely we have some batsmen somewhere in the squad ? fratsomrover
  • Score: 0

8:13pm Tue 29 Apr 14

MikeTheMan says...

Just got home from the County Ground. What a shambles our batting was today! That was without doubt the most pitiful display of batting I have seen from a Sussex team for a long time. There was nothing wrong with the pitch - as evidenced by Wells scoring 79 not out while the other ten managed a ludicrous and laughable 53 in our first innings. Joyce apart, the second innings was no better. Our openers are fine but the rest of our batting is woefully weak, woefully weak. Other than our openers, the batting today would have embarrassed an average club side.

Wells 79 not out and 26, Joyce 6 and 76 not out, so a perfectly good pitch. But Yardy 10 and 11, RHB 0 and 4, Machan 10 and 7, Brown 4 and 1, Zaidi 4 and 18, Jordan 5 and 6 not out, Anyon 2, Magoffin 2, Lewis 11. Wells and Joyce have got runs: our next highest score was 18 and the only logical reason for all the failures can be that they are not good enough.

I have a lot of time for Yardy, he has made major contributions to Sussex cricket and he well deserves his benefit but he hasn’t scored any runs in 3 matches so far this season. RHB has continued from last season, gets runs very occasionally but two total failures again. Machan is only young but two total failures and he was dropped as well. Brown – also two total failures - isn’t good enough to bat at number 6 and the fact that he was batting there shows just what a ridiculously long and not very good tail we have. Our seam bowlers are supposed to be able to bat competently – absolutely no evidence of that today (though to be fair Lewis was the second highest scorer in the first innings debacle). Zaidi may possibly be the best spin option we’ve got but he has been batting several places too high and he’s looking what he is, a club cricketer.

Other than Wells and Joyce, the batting today was total rubbish and I can’t see how even Robbo can fail to see that – we have to get Nash, Prior and Wright into the team as soon as possible. At least five, maybe six, of that team could very justifiably be dropped after that shambles – if only we had enough experienced players to replace them.

We need catching practice too – we let Somerset get far too many runs by dropping both Trescothick and Petersen, their two highest scorers. Everybody drops catches sometime but if you drop good players you often pay a high price.
Just got home from the County Ground. What a shambles our batting was today! That was without doubt the most pitiful display of batting I have seen from a Sussex team for a long time. There was nothing wrong with the pitch - as evidenced by Wells scoring 79 not out while the other ten managed a ludicrous and laughable 53 in our first innings. Joyce apart, the second innings was no better. Our openers are fine but the rest of our batting is woefully weak, woefully weak. Other than our openers, the batting today would have embarrassed an average club side. Wells 79 not out and 26, Joyce 6 and 76 not out, so a perfectly good pitch. But Yardy 10 and 11, RHB 0 and 4, Machan 10 and 7, Brown 4 and 1, Zaidi 4 and 18, Jordan 5 and 6 not out, Anyon 2, Magoffin 2, Lewis 11. Wells and Joyce have got runs: our next highest score was 18 and the only logical reason for all the failures can be that they are not good enough. I have a lot of time for Yardy, he has made major contributions to Sussex cricket and he well deserves his benefit but he hasn’t scored any runs in 3 matches so far this season. RHB has continued from last season, gets runs very occasionally but two total failures again. Machan is only young but two total failures and he was dropped as well. Brown – also two total failures - isn’t good enough to bat at number 6 and the fact that he was batting there shows just what a ridiculously long and not very good tail we have. Our seam bowlers are supposed to be able to bat competently – absolutely no evidence of that today (though to be fair Lewis was the second highest scorer in the first innings debacle). Zaidi may possibly be the best spin option we’ve got but he has been batting several places too high and he’s looking what he is, a club cricketer. Other than Wells and Joyce, the batting today was total rubbish and I can’t see how even Robbo can fail to see that – we have to get Nash, Prior and Wright into the team as soon as possible. At least five, maybe six, of that team could very justifiably be dropped after that shambles – if only we had enough experienced players to replace them. We need catching practice too – we let Somerset get far too many runs by dropping both Trescothick and Petersen, their two highest scorers. Everybody drops catches sometime but if you drop good players you often pay a high price. MikeTheMan
  • Score: 3

8:57pm Tue 29 Apr 14

psb196 says...

Mike The Man - I agree completely. It must have been dreadful for you to witness today. Thankfully I went yesterday, although by early afternoon that was bad enough.

We have a problem in two ways - firstly our top three bowlers are unplayable for ten overs each and often get five or six wickets in that time, or, as in Middlesex and Warwickshire, get the whole lot. However, if the opposition weather the storm like Warwickshire's second innings and Somerset yesterday, they go on to amass literally hundreds of runs. We have no "go to" alternative. Zaidi, is, as you correctly say, a club cricketer. Otherwise we bowl Luke Wells (oh please!) or Hamilton-Brown.

Then, of course there is the batting. I was wondering what would happen if Joyce was out cheaply. Now we know. Wells did well, but he is not always so successful. Yardy is a walking wicket now, I'm very sad to say. because, again like you, I respect the guy. Hamilton-Brown is a shadow of the boy that Surrey elected KIng, he now plays like a tired old man. Ben Brown's batting has got worse, year upon year. Machan I will forgive, just. Zaidi confuss many who say he is a great batsman. Really? Could have fooled me. Ditto Chris Jordan. A 90 at Derby a year ago does not a batsman make. Again, many seem to think because he is of West Indian origin he is Chris Gayle. He isn't.

Robinson did well in going for the experience of Lewis and Lewis has proved him right. I feel he should also have gone for an experienced Trego-style batsman who could steady the ship and get us 80 from number six or seven when we need it.
Mike The Man - I agree completely. It must have been dreadful for you to witness today. Thankfully I went yesterday, although by early afternoon that was bad enough. We have a problem in two ways - firstly our top three bowlers are unplayable for ten overs each and often get five or six wickets in that time, or, as in Middlesex and Warwickshire, get the whole lot. However, if the opposition weather the storm like Warwickshire's second innings and Somerset yesterday, they go on to amass literally hundreds of runs. We have no "go to" alternative. Zaidi, is, as you correctly say, a club cricketer. Otherwise we bowl Luke Wells (oh please!) or Hamilton-Brown. Then, of course there is the batting. I was wondering what would happen if Joyce was out cheaply. Now we know. Wells did well, but he is not always so successful. Yardy is a walking wicket now, I'm very sad to say. because, again like you, I respect the guy. Hamilton-Brown is a shadow of the boy that Surrey elected KIng, he now plays like a tired old man. Ben Brown's batting has got worse, year upon year. Machan I will forgive, just. Zaidi confuss many who say he is a great batsman. Really? Could have fooled me. Ditto Chris Jordan. A 90 at Derby a year ago does not a batsman make. Again, many seem to think because he is of West Indian origin he is Chris Gayle. He isn't. Robinson did well in going for the experience of Lewis and Lewis has proved him right. I feel he should also have gone for an experienced Trego-style batsman who could steady the ship and get us 80 from number six or seven when we need it. psb196
  • Score: 2

9:00pm Tue 29 Apr 14

psb196 says...

Typo in earlier post. I meant Zaidi confuses many.
Typo in earlier post. I meant Zaidi confuses many. psb196
  • Score: 0

9:03pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Curly1960 says...

Let's not panic. We have been outplayed in this game but have we already forgotten the convincing wins against two good teams - Middlesex & Warwickshire (away)? I am sure that the batsmen will own up to their shortcomings here but a full strength line up would surely include Prior, Nash & Wright, when all fit, which may well happen in the next fixture with Joyce, Machan & Jordan all possibly missing. Nash & Wright both hit fifties in the 2nd's game today. Keep calm people!!
Let's not panic. We have been outplayed in this game but have we already forgotten the convincing wins against two good teams - Middlesex & Warwickshire (away)? I am sure that the batsmen will own up to their shortcomings here but a full strength line up would surely include Prior, Nash & Wright, when all fit, which may well happen in the next fixture with Joyce, Machan & Jordan all possibly missing. Nash & Wright both hit fifties in the 2nd's game today. Keep calm people!! Curly1960
  • Score: -1

9:12pm Tue 29 Apr 14

psb196 says...

Therein lies a perennial problem, our best players rarely all play at the same time, if ever. There's always someone out.
Therein lies a perennial problem, our best players rarely all play at the same time, if ever. There's always someone out. psb196
  • Score: 0

9:20pm Tue 29 Apr 14

MikeTheMan says...

Curly1960 - you may be right to say don't panic but I was there today. Wells and Joyce got a lot of runs - the wicket was fine. The sad truth is that the rest of our batting, without exception, was rubbish, And some players were rubbish twice. Some of them are not good enough. Yes, we won our first two matches but that was because (a) our bowlers are good in very helpful conditions and (b) Joyce got a lot of runs. Several players (batsmen specifically) have done nothing in 3 matches - and we don't have a quality spinner.
Curly1960 - you may be right to say don't panic but I was there today. Wells and Joyce got a lot of runs - the wicket was fine. The sad truth is that the rest of our batting, without exception, was rubbish, And some players were rubbish twice. Some of them are not good enough. Yes, we won our first two matches but that was because (a) our bowlers are good in very helpful conditions and (b) Joyce got a lot of runs. Several players (batsmen specifically) have done nothing in 3 matches - and we don't have a quality spinner. MikeTheMan
  • Score: 0

9:35pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Curly1960 says...

MikeTheMan - I agree with your point about a quality spinner but let's judge him when the wickets are more helpful later in the season ( I don't see many other spinners bagging lots of wickets at the moment )and Robbo made a conscious decision to not go for a higher profile player because the stats don't suggest spinners win many matches these days. This allows them to play 4 front line seamers which I think is a better tactic.
I also think a line up of Wells, Nash, Yardy, Joyce, Prior, & Wright will come good more often than not this season, with Machan or Finch as back up.
MikeTheMan - I agree with your point about a quality spinner but let's judge him when the wickets are more helpful later in the season ( I don't see many other spinners bagging lots of wickets at the moment )and Robbo made a conscious decision to not go for a higher profile player because the stats don't suggest spinners win many matches these days. This allows them to play 4 front line seamers which I think is a better tactic. I also think a line up of Wells, Nash, Yardy, Joyce, Prior, & Wright will come good more often than not this season, with Machan or Finch as back up. Curly1960
  • Score: 0

9:42pm Tue 29 Apr 14

psb196 says...

Zaidi played in the final two matches of last season on supposedly spinner-friendly pitches and only took wickets against Yorkshire when their innings was well into its latter stages. He is not good enough. I'm sure come September I will have been proved right.

For the past three seasons, early season wins have been gained when the wicket suits Magoffin and latterly Magoffin and Jordan (and Lewis v Middlesex). Come the heat of midsummer Magoffin "goes troppo" as they say in the Northern Territory and is nowhere near the bowler of April and May. The same was true of Jordan last season too.
Zaidi played in the final two matches of last season on supposedly spinner-friendly pitches and only took wickets against Yorkshire when their innings was well into its latter stages. He is not good enough. I'm sure come September I will have been proved right. For the past three seasons, early season wins have been gained when the wicket suits Magoffin and latterly Magoffin and Jordan (and Lewis v Middlesex). Come the heat of midsummer Magoffin "goes troppo" as they say in the Northern Territory and is nowhere near the bowler of April and May. The same was true of Jordan last season too. psb196
  • Score: 0

11:36am Wed 30 Apr 14

psb196 says...

Nice of Jordan to dig in this morning! Not.
Nice of Jordan to dig in this morning! Not. psb196
  • Score: 0

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