Joyce battles to hold Sussex innings together

First published in Sport by

The frailties of Sussex’s batting were cruelly exposed once again on the opening day of their County Championship clash with Somerset at Taunton.

After winning the toss and electing to bat Sussex slumped to 210-9 as all their top order failed with the exception of Ed Joyce.

Not for the first time Joyce almost single-handedly held the Sussex batting together and will need one more run to complete his fifth first class century of the season in the morning.

It could have been even worse for Sussex if Craig Keiswetter had not dropped Joyce when he had yet to score.

At that point Sussex were 16-2 having already lost Luke Wells and Rory Hamilton-Brown cheaply.

Chris Nash (15) and Matt Machan (30) threatened to offer Joyce some support but were both out before lunch with Sussex in deep trouble on 82-4.

Joyce did put on 50 with Luke Wright – off 118 balls – before the England all-rounder fell for 24, playing on trying to cut a wide ball from Peter Trego.

The Sussex skipper moved to his 50 from 142 balls but lost another partner before tea as Ben Brown was superbly caught by Johann Myburgh off the bowling of Craig Overton for seven.

Heavy rain during the tea interval held Somerset’s push to bowl Sussex out for an hour but when play did resume Steffan Piolet fell for four and Will Beer eight.

Sussex did manage to pick up a solitary batting point before James Anyon was trapped lbw by Overton for three.

Steve Magoffin survived as Joyce moved to 99 but was unable to complete his century before the close.

Comments (2)

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7:29pm Sun 8 Jun 14

MikeTheMan says...

Joyce 99 not out, the rest 99-9 and 6 batsmen out in single figures at Taunton. When are some of our serial failures going to bat properly, offer Joyce some support and get some significant runs. Pathetic batting (Joyce apart obviously). We recruited 3 bowlers over the winter (none of whom are now regular starters) but no batsmen at all. Time we did.
Joyce 99 not out, the rest 99-9 and 6 batsmen out in single figures at Taunton. When are some of our serial failures going to bat properly, offer Joyce some support and get some significant runs. Pathetic batting (Joyce apart obviously). We recruited 3 bowlers over the winter (none of whom are now regular starters) but no batsmen at all. Time we did. MikeTheMan
  • Score: 2

11:38pm Sun 8 Jun 14

Vince says...

Apart from Ed Joyce, Luke Wright is one of the few batsmen recently to have shown much more restraint and maturity in building a big innings - and not giving his wicket away cheaply as he used to do so often. It was therefore very disappointing to hear that he perished chasing a wide one from Trego, when Sussex were crying out for someone to stay there with Ed. Who knows, we might have been 250-3 and looking to get maximum batting points, by now if Wright had got his head down for the long haul?

In the last 2 seasons we rescued many games by batting with much more resolve and application in the 2nd innings than the first. If the innings had been reversed we would have had many more bonus points than we actually got. Fortunately Ed Joyce has almost single-handedly ensured that we have at least secured a reasonable number of batting points so far this season - but the rest of the top order really need to battle it out and get some big innings under their belts. Far too many batsmen are getting out in the 20's, 30's and 40's when they had built the platform for a big innings. As Geoff Boycott would say "Guard your wicket as though your life depended on it. Don't throw it away (like Pietersen did in Australia, by trying to hit sixes over mid on)!" To Luke Wright, I would say:- Leave the wide ones outside off stump alone and don't be drawn into impetuously trying to hit short pitched deliveries over long leg. That shot is usually Matt Prior's downfall.
Apart from Ed Joyce, Luke Wright is one of the few batsmen recently to have shown much more restraint and maturity in building a big innings - and not giving his wicket away cheaply as he used to do so often. It was therefore very disappointing to hear that he perished chasing a wide one from Trego, when Sussex were crying out for someone to stay there with Ed. Who knows, we might have been 250-3 and looking to get maximum batting points, by now if Wright had got his head down for the long haul? In the last 2 seasons we rescued many games by batting with much more resolve and application in the 2nd innings than the first. If the innings had been reversed we would have had many more bonus points than we actually got. Fortunately Ed Joyce has almost single-handedly ensured that we have at least secured a reasonable number of batting points so far this season - but the rest of the top order really need to battle it out and get some big innings under their belts. Far too many batsmen are getting out in the 20's, 30's and 40's when they had built the platform for a big innings. As Geoff Boycott would say "Guard your wicket as though your life depended on it. Don't throw it away (like Pietersen did in Australia, by trying to hit sixes over mid on)!" To Luke Wright, I would say:- Leave the wide ones outside off stump alone and don't be drawn into impetuously trying to hit short pitched deliveries over long leg. That shot is usually Matt Prior's downfall. Vince
  • Score: 1

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