Sussex have been told they are in a “fantastic” position to end their wait for promotion at the halfway stage of the season.

The county are eight points clear at the top of Vitality County Championship division two after a high-scoring but dull draw with closest rivals Middlesex at Lord’s.

They have a 17-point buffer over third-placed Leicestershire going into a break in red-ball action.

Sussex head coach Paul Farbrace said: “We’ve said for two years we want to be promoted and be in division one.

“There’s plenty of good cricket to be played before it’s decided who’s going to go up but we want to be there or thereabouts.

“Seven games in, to be in the position we’re in is fantastic.

“We’re right up there with three games won out of seven, two others where the weather went against us when we were in a good position and one pretty tough defeat to Glamorgan.

“But we’re certainly not getting carried away with ourselves.

“We know there are some good teams in division two who will also be looking at it and saying they’re not in a bad position at the turn.”

Middlesex ended day four on 613-9 declared in reply to Sussex’s total of 554-9 with a positive result for either side never really looking possible.

Jayden Seales and Cheteshwar Pujara have now completed their stints in the Championship this season.

Attention now turns to T20 cricket and the Vitality Blast, which gets under way when Gloucestershire visit Hove on Friday (7pm).