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Nash leads Sussex to emphatic win
Sussex kept their hopes of qualifying for the quarter finals of the NatWest T20 Blast alive with a comprehensive victory over Middlesex at Hove.
Will Beer and Lewis Hatchett both took three wickets as Middlesex were bowled out for 107 in the final over.
Sussex cruised to victory with six wickets and 23 balls to spare thanks largely to an unbeaten 74 from Chris Nash.
The result followed up their win against Kent the previous week and lifted the Sharks into fourth spot in the south division.
Stand-in skipper Nash opted to put Middlesex in after winning the toss and it proved a wise move as the visitors hopes of setting a challenging total were undermined by losing early wickets.
Joe Denly was bowled for eight in the second over by Lewis Hatchett and dangerman Eoin Morgan made just one when he edged James Anyon to the wicketkeeper.
Ryan Higgins and Dawid Malan were both dropped but it made little difference as Sussex’s bowlers kept up the pressure.
Beer bowled Malan with his first ball for 13 and also picked up the wickets of Neil Dexter and John Simpson to leave Middlesex in deep trouble on 61-6 after 11 overs.
Steff Piolet kept things tight as he conceded just 17 runs from his four overs and also picked up the wicket of the big-hitting Dan Christian lbw with a ball that kept low.
Higgins and Rayner put on 30 for the seventh wicket but the Middlesex innings tailed off when Higgins was bowled by Anyon for 31 and Rayner followed in the following over from Yasir Arafat for 18.
Hatchett finished things off in the final over by dismissing James Harris and Harry Podmore to return career-best figures of 3-23.
A total of 107 was never going to cause Sussex too many difficulties even though they lost Luke Wright and Harry Finch inside the first five overs.
Wright was trapped lbw by James Harris for just two while Finch was run out by a direct hit from Higgins having looked good for his 11.
Nash put on 49 for the third wicket with Rory Hamilton-Brown and brought up his 50 from 40 balls.
Hamilton-Brown fell for 17 and Matt Machan was caught on the midwicket boundary for three but Nash secured the win with a straight six off Harris.
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