Stokes exposes Sussex's frailties

Luke Wright made an unbeaten 66

Luke Wright made an unbeaten 66

First published in Sport
Last updated

Career best figures of seven for 67 for Ben Stokes put Durham on course for a second successive LV County Championship win, while Sussex's slide into relegation trouble looks set to continue.

Sussex collapsed from 56 without loss to 205 all out, despite an unbeaten 66 from Luke Wright, then saw Keaton Jennings put an indifferent run of form behind him. He reached 46 not out as Durham stretched their lead to 237 with nine wickets standing.

Although Stokes took six for 99 for England at Sydney in the winter, his only previous five-wicket haul in the championship was six for 68 against Hampshire at the Rose Bowl three years ago.

After not being considered ready for England duty following his self-inflicted broken wrist, this is Stokes' third game back.

National selector James Whitaker watched him in last week's win against Lancashire when his five wickets in the match all resulted from poor strokes and he conceded runs at five an over.

Whitaker was not present today to see a vastly-improved display in which Stokes took four for 10 in his first six overs through swing and steep bounce.

A change of ball again seemed to have an influence, just as it did in Durham's first innings. That came after 31 overs and this time it happened after 17, just before Stokes came on.

Amazingly, both openers fell to slip catches via the wicketkeeper's gloves as five wickets went down for 23 in 12 overs.

Luke Wells nicked Stokes' fifth ball and Phil Mustard parried it to Scott Borthwick at second slip.

Paul Coughlin came on at the other end and after opening with a maiden he was twice driven to the cover boundary by Chris Nash, who then fended at a short one and edged above Mustard's head.

The wicketkeeper knocked the ball upwards and Paul Collingwood completed the catch at first slip.

As the edges kept coming, Mustard hung on to four catches and there was another one for Borthwick, while the other three were bowled by Stokes.

He went round the wicket to left-hander Joyce, who played round a fast swinger and lost his off stump.

Ben Brown may have been unlucky as a steeply-rising ball brushed him on the way to Mustard. The batsman indicated it had hit his shoulder, but he was given out.

The slide to 79 for five was arrested by Steffan Piolet contributing 25 to a stand of 54 with Wright before Stokes knocked back his off stump.

After a 14-over spell spanning lunch he was rested and John Hastings picked up two wickets before Stokes was recalled and saw Wright top-edge a pull over the wicketkeeper for his eighth four to reach 50 off 79 balls.

After Jon Lewis edged to Mustard, last man Lewis Hatchett played on.

With a full session to bat, Durham made a flying start then dropped anchor after losing Mark Stoneman, caught at second slip by Tredwell for 22, with the total on 35 in the sixth over. In the remaining two hours Borthwick made an unbeaten 22.

Comments (11)

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9:44am Tue 24 Jun 14

Max Ripple says...

So much for Rory Hamilton Browns predictions of us 'turning the corner'.
I was particularly impressed by his magnificent score of 1.
So much for Rory Hamilton Browns predictions of us 'turning the corner'. I was particularly impressed by his magnificent score of 1. Max Ripple
  • Score: 2

10:13am Tue 24 Jun 14

Neville says...

So much for Nash,s column in the Argus saying we need to be hard to beat.
There is I am afraid a malaise in the camp and we rarely hear from Robinson who seems unable to motivate anyone since he failed to get the England job.
The batting is absolutely abysmal with the odd exceptions and a clear out is needed and perhaps time for Adams to rtn to add some steel to things. Failure to secure a quality batsman and no one stepping up to the plate and able to show consistency makes us look relegation candidates. Never any word from the chief exec and with the poor crowds and T20 looking beyond us,things bleak currently.
So much for Nash,s column in the Argus saying we need to be hard to beat. There is I am afraid a malaise in the camp and we rarely hear from Robinson who seems unable to motivate anyone since he failed to get the England job. The batting is absolutely abysmal with the odd exceptions and a clear out is needed and perhaps time for Adams to rtn to add some steel to things. Failure to secure a quality batsman and no one stepping up to the plate and able to show consistency makes us look relegation candidates. Never any word from the chief exec and with the poor crowds and T20 looking beyond us,things bleak currently. Neville
  • Score: 7

11:07am Tue 24 Jun 14

woodcroft says...

Neville wrote:
So much for Nash,s column in the Argus saying we need to be hard to beat.
There is I am afraid a malaise in the camp and we rarely hear from Robinson who seems unable to motivate anyone since he failed to get the England job.
The batting is absolutely abysmal with the odd exceptions and a clear out is needed and perhaps time for Adams to rtn to add some steel to things. Failure to secure a quality batsman and no one stepping up to the plate and able to show consistency makes us look relegation candidates. Never any word from the chief exec and with the poor crowds and T20 looking beyond us,things bleak currently.
If you do not employ a batting coach you will continued to have problems. never an Adams fan as a coach, but we are real relegation contenders
[quote][p][bold]Neville[/bold] wrote: So much for Nash,s column in the Argus saying we need to be hard to beat. There is I am afraid a malaise in the camp and we rarely hear from Robinson who seems unable to motivate anyone since he failed to get the England job. The batting is absolutely abysmal with the odd exceptions and a clear out is needed and perhaps time for Adams to rtn to add some steel to things. Failure to secure a quality batsman and no one stepping up to the plate and able to show consistency makes us look relegation candidates. Never any word from the chief exec and with the poor crowds and T20 looking beyond us,things bleak currently.[/p][/quote]If you do not employ a batting coach you will continued to have problems. never an Adams fan as a coach, but we are real relegation contenders woodcroft
  • Score: 4

11:55am Tue 24 Jun 14

MikeTheMan says...

These are dark and depressing days for us Sussex fanatics I’m afraid. Another massive defeat looming. Durham effectively 237-1 and I'm sure they could actually declare overnight and be confident of beating us comfortably. It’s becoming clearer by the day that we are a very poor team indeed. People can try to make excuses for these players and a whole series of bad performances but really we are a shambles at both batting and bowling at the moment. Frankly this is becoming an embarrassment – we are being annihilated by a team who only got their first Championship win of the season last week and who are missing three of their best bowlers (Onions, Arshad and Wood). We could well be set around 500 to win and with our serial batting failures we will be lucky to get halfway.

At the end of this match we will have 102 points. Lancs are demolishing Northants and will have 100 points. We won our first two games, got 43 points and were top of the table. Since then we have played 8 matches, only got 59 points from them and been nowhere close to actually winning a match. So we’ve dropped from top of the table to 2 points above a relegation place and it is hard to see where a win is going to come from (even against Northants). Most worryingly we seems to lack fighting spirit and real determination to battle.

We made a fuss of Hatchett getting 5 wickets on the first day and it was a good achievement but actually our bowlers were carted around all day - Hatchett and Tredwell went at 5 an over, Piolet at four-and-a-half, Lewis and Magoffin at 3. We let them get at least 100 too many on that pitch.

When we batted, Nash and Wells saw off their strike bowlers but then 56-0 suddenly became 79-5 as our batsman failed YET again. Wells has got 16, Stokes comes on and in his first over Wells hits him for 4 and is out next ball. As so often, Nash has got a start and reached 28, Coughlin comes on and in his second over Nash hits him for two successive 4s and is predictably out next ball. RHB is caught-and-bowled for 1. He loves batting at three but he’s no good at it. His average is so bad it’s below even Machan’s. He talks a better game than he appears able to play. Joyce is excused most criticism because he’s been carrying our batting but his last three scores have been 0, 0 and 2, which is no use to anyone. Brown sometimes gets runs but you always expect him to be out in single figures and he didn’t disappoint.

Wright played a very responsible innings but you can’t recover from the other (only) five batsmen in the team all failing again. Piolet and Tredwell gave him some useful support and helped us to at least save the follow-on (and get a bonus point).

When Durham batted again they showed there is nothing wrong with the pitch or the conditions and got to 105-1 with no problems.

These are extremely depressing times but we are now a very a very poor team and it’s time to stop making excuses. We have a lot of serial failures in this team and hopefully at very least 3 of them will be replaced next season by players who will show more commitment and real determination.
These are dark and depressing days for us Sussex fanatics I’m afraid. Another massive defeat looming. Durham effectively 237-1 and I'm sure they could actually declare overnight and be confident of beating us comfortably. It’s becoming clearer by the day that we are a very poor team indeed. People can try to make excuses for these players and a whole series of bad performances but really we are a shambles at both batting and bowling at the moment. Frankly this is becoming an embarrassment – we are being annihilated by a team who only got their first Championship win of the season last week and who are missing three of their best bowlers (Onions, Arshad and Wood). We could well be set around 500 to win and with our serial batting failures we will be lucky to get halfway. At the end of this match we will have 102 points. Lancs are demolishing Northants and will have 100 points. We won our first two games, got 43 points and were top of the table. Since then we have played 8 matches, only got 59 points from them and been nowhere close to actually winning a match. So we’ve dropped from top of the table to 2 points above a relegation place and it is hard to see where a win is going to come from (even against Northants). Most worryingly we seems to lack fighting spirit and real determination to battle. We made a fuss of Hatchett getting 5 wickets on the first day and it was a good achievement but actually our bowlers were carted around all day - Hatchett and Tredwell went at 5 an over, Piolet at four-and-a-half, Lewis and Magoffin at 3. We let them get at least 100 too many on that pitch. When we batted, Nash and Wells saw off their strike bowlers but then 56-0 suddenly became 79-5 as our batsman failed YET again. Wells has got 16, Stokes comes on and in his first over Wells hits him for 4 and is out next ball. As so often, Nash has got a start and reached 28, Coughlin comes on and in his second over Nash hits him for two successive 4s and is predictably out next ball. RHB is caught-and-bowled for 1. He loves batting at three but he’s no good at it. His average is so bad it’s below even Machan’s. He talks a better game than he appears able to play. Joyce is excused most criticism because he’s been carrying our batting but his last three scores have been 0, 0 and 2, which is no use to anyone. Brown sometimes gets runs but you always expect him to be out in single figures and he didn’t disappoint. Wright played a very responsible innings but you can’t recover from the other (only) five batsmen in the team all failing again. Piolet and Tredwell gave him some useful support and helped us to at least save the follow-on (and get a bonus point). When Durham batted again they showed there is nothing wrong with the pitch or the conditions and got to 105-1 with no problems. These are extremely depressing times but we are now a very a very poor team and it’s time to stop making excuses. We have a lot of serial failures in this team and hopefully at very least 3 of them will be replaced next season by players who will show more commitment and real determination. MikeTheMan
  • Score: 10

12:11pm Tue 24 Jun 14

Max Ripple says...

Don't know why I got a thumbs down earlier on this story. Just stating the obvious. He's got to either sort himself out or go.
I thought MikeTheMan's comments were spot on also.
Don't know why I got a thumbs down earlier on this story. Just stating the obvious. He's got to either sort himself out or go. I thought MikeTheMan's comments were spot on also. Max Ripple
  • Score: 4

1:00pm Tue 24 Jun 14

MikeTheMan says...

221-1 at lunch, 116-0 this morning off 28 overs, over 4 an over, lead over 350 already. You can't get much grimmer than that. I'd bet a lot of money that wickets will start tumbling when we bat later today.
221-1 at lunch, 116-0 this morning off 28 overs, over 4 an over, lead over 350 already. You can't get much grimmer than that. I'd bet a lot of money that wickets will start tumbling when we bat later today. MikeTheMan
  • Score: 5

3:05pm Tue 24 Jun 14

bruce beckett says...

MikeTheMan:

Good post summing up the current malaise at Sussex. How many times this season have we had a team in early trouble only to see the lower order pile up the runs? I guess that's down to the fact that Zaidi has been a massive bust and we don't have a frontline spinner to break partnerships. Oh for the days of Mushy!

What I will say though is that nothing last forever. For a county with a limited budget, we've been competing with the big boys for a long time now. It was inevitable that at some stage the talent would dry up.

It seems we don't have the middle order batsmen to compete in Division One. The fact that Wright is batting at No. 5 and Brown at No. 6 tells you all you need to know. If the top four go early, we're in trouble.

Jordan's success since switching from Surrey has been England's gain but our loss. We sure could do with him right now, especially as he can bat a bit too.

We're not down yet, but it's hard to see where our next win is coming from.
MikeTheMan: Good post summing up the current malaise at Sussex. How many times this season have we had a team in early trouble only to see the lower order pile up the runs? I guess that's down to the fact that Zaidi has been a massive bust and we don't have a frontline spinner to break partnerships. Oh for the days of Mushy! What I will say though is that nothing last forever. For a county with a limited budget, we've been competing with the big boys for a long time now. It was inevitable that at some stage the talent would dry up. It seems we don't have the middle order batsmen to compete in Division One. The fact that Wright is batting at No. 5 and Brown at No. 6 tells you all you need to know. If the top four go early, we're in trouble. Jordan's success since switching from Surrey has been England's gain but our loss. We sure could do with him right now, especially as he can bat a bit too. We're not down yet, but it's hard to see where our next win is coming from. bruce beckett
  • Score: 3

5:55pm Tue 24 Jun 14

Max Ripple says...

Ooh. Rory scored 7 in his second innings. Massive improvement. Sorry - not impressed. Must do better or go.
Ooh. Rory scored 7 in his second innings. Massive improvement. Sorry - not impressed. Must do better or go. Max Ripple
  • Score: 2

7:49pm Tue 24 Jun 14

warwick shark says...

Another spineless performance again-we are going down with northants at this rate! Is it the players or the coach? Since when has RHB been a number three, batting at three is as good as opening with sussex! Wright has shown some fight with the bat, but the hard facts are, this is turning out to be the same shambles as last season.
Maybe the drop would do us good, shake things up, realise who's not up for the fight!
Another spineless performance again-we are going down with northants at this rate! Is it the players or the coach? Since when has RHB been a number three, batting at three is as good as opening with sussex! Wright has shown some fight with the bat, but the hard facts are, this is turning out to be the same shambles as last season. Maybe the drop would do us good, shake things up, realise who's not up for the fight! warwick shark
  • Score: 2

8:03pm Tue 24 Jun 14

MikeTheMan says...

What a pathetic, disgraceful performance. We’ve been a shambles for three days. As I said earlier, Durham could have declared overnight with a lead of 237 and been confident of beating us comfortably and so it has proved.

Durham have scored 696-16 (over 43 runs per wicket), we’ve scored 378-19 (under 20 runs per wicket). You can’t get a much more comprehensive thrashing than that, yet Durham were below us in the table before this match.

Both Durham openers scored a century and their number 3 scored 95. What did we do in response? Nash 36 and 18, Wells 20 and 17, Hopeless Hamilton-Brown (who loves batting at three) 1 and 7. He really is useless. Joyce 2 and 23 (following two 0s), Brown 4 and 14. Only Wright looked good enough to bat in the Championship. Tredwell is comfortably the highest scorer in our second innings and scored 16 in the first innings. He hasn’t been a great success as a spinner but clearly he is a better batsman than most of our top 6.

Stokes, who averages two wickets a match, has so far taken 10-121and Hastings has taken 6-99 on the same pitch on which our bowlers were carted around for almost 700 runs while only taking 16 wickets.

Durham got a load of runs, so nothing wrong with the pitch, we were just pathetic. Our team selection was bizarre but it just showed that we don’t have a sensibly balanced squad because of our poor recruitment last winter. We are over halfway through the season and Machan hasn’t yet scored a 50 so dropping him was fair enough. However with Yardy injured we don’t have any other batsmen so we played only 6 batsmen plus Piolet and Tredwell. Piolet is nearly 26 and can be effective in limited overs cricket but he never has been, and never will be, anywhere near good enough for Championship cricket as a batsman or as a bowler as this match has demonstrated again. Tredwell has batted well in this match but we brought him in primarily as a spin bowler and the last thing you need at Chester-le-Street is a specialist spinner.

We have been absolutely dreadful in this match. We are now 2 points from being in a relegation position. Lancashire play again before we do so we will be in eighth place when we start our next match. That is against Northants – everyone else beats them but will we? Come on Robbo, what excuses have you got for that non-performance? What are you going to do about it? Why was our recruitment so poor last winter?
What a pathetic, disgraceful performance. We’ve been a shambles for three days. As I said earlier, Durham could have declared overnight with a lead of 237 and been confident of beating us comfortably and so it has proved. Durham have scored 696-16 (over 43 runs per wicket), we’ve scored 378-19 (under 20 runs per wicket). You can’t get a much more comprehensive thrashing than that, yet Durham were below us in the table before this match. Both Durham openers scored a century and their number 3 scored 95. What did we do in response? Nash 36 and 18, Wells 20 and 17, Hopeless Hamilton-Brown (who loves batting at three) 1 and 7. He really is useless. Joyce 2 and 23 (following two 0s), Brown 4 and 14. Only Wright looked good enough to bat in the Championship. Tredwell is comfortably the highest scorer in our second innings and scored 16 in the first innings. He hasn’t been a great success as a spinner but clearly he is a better batsman than most of our top 6. Stokes, who averages two wickets a match, has so far taken 10-121and Hastings has taken 6-99 on the same pitch on which our bowlers were carted around for almost 700 runs while only taking 16 wickets. Durham got a load of runs, so nothing wrong with the pitch, we were just pathetic. Our team selection was bizarre but it just showed that we don’t have a sensibly balanced squad because of our poor recruitment last winter. We are over halfway through the season and Machan hasn’t yet scored a 50 so dropping him was fair enough. However with Yardy injured we don’t have any other batsmen so we played only 6 batsmen plus Piolet and Tredwell. Piolet is nearly 26 and can be effective in limited overs cricket but he never has been, and never will be, anywhere near good enough for Championship cricket as a batsman or as a bowler as this match has demonstrated again. Tredwell has batted well in this match but we brought him in primarily as a spin bowler and the last thing you need at Chester-le-Street is a specialist spinner. We have been absolutely dreadful in this match. We are now 2 points from being in a relegation position. Lancashire play again before we do so we will be in eighth place when we start our next match. That is against Northants – everyone else beats them but will we? Come on Robbo, what excuses have you got for that non-performance? What are you going to do about it? Why was our recruitment so poor last winter? MikeTheMan
  • Score: 8

9:52am Wed 25 Jun 14

warwick shark says...

Guess we'll have to win the 50 over comp!! Only one way we're going!
Guess we'll have to win the 50 over comp!! Only one way we're going! warwick shark
  • Score: 1

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