Jason Gillespie believes Sussex never made the most of their brilliant last-gasp win at Essex.

The head coach has also pinpointed failings with the ball and among the upper-order batting.

Put together, it all cost them a chance of going for silverware in the Royal London One-Day Cup.

Sharks are taking a break from competitive action after missing out on tomorrow’s quarter-finals in the 50-overs competition.

They looked well set to take one of the three qualification spots in their nine-team group after winning four of their first five matches.

Belief was high after they grabbed a one-wicket win in the final over at Chelmsford.

If that win felt like a defining moment in their group schedule, then such belief really grew when David Wiese and Ben Brown looked like leading a brilliant run chase against Hampshire.

Instead, they lost a spate of quick wickets at the Ageas Bowl to miss out on a memorable win.

That turned out to be the beginning of the end as they then lost heavily to Gloucestershire at Eastbourne and were on the wrong end of a record-breaking Glamorgan run chase at Hove.

As it turned out, a win on Tuesday would not have been enough as teams just ahead of Sussex all got the results they needed.

So, while there were suggestions Sussex improved in the 50-overs format this year, it was hard not to feel very deflated that they missed out.

To that end, the finale was fittingly underwhelming – Sussex already out and a small crowd in the bitter cold watching Glamorgan’s youngsters successfully chase 348, more than any other team has ever managed at Hove.

It was a complete contrast to the classic Good Friday win over Surrey before a big crowd which seemed to set up a good run in the event.

Or super away wins at Middlesex, Kent and Essex.

Gillespie told The Argus: “We did all right. To lose our last couple of games is pretty disappointing.

“The lads are hurting. They are disappointed but we didn’t deserve it (to go through).

“You look back at that match against Hampshire - after being out of the game completely and then get it down to 21 of the last three with five wickets in hand and then lose.

“It almost feels like we played our final against Essex, when we won by one wicket.

“There are areas to improve. We identified that our top five probably didn’t quite do enough with the bat over the course of the campaign.

“Some individuals played some really good knocks but, as a collective top five, I think we could have been a bit more effective.

“Certainly with the ball, I think our defence, particularly at the back end of innings, needs to improve.

“We know the opposition will hit boundaries, that will happen.

“But make them hit them from good deliveries, not gifting an easy half-volley on leg stump or a short wide one that can just be laced through point for four.

“A genuine half-volley or a genuine half-tracker “These are the things we need to improve on.

“We have got a pretty simple plan of hitting the top of the stumps and no width.

“Unfortunately, we probably haven’t been able to quite do that consistently enough and for long enough.”

Highlights for Sussex from the last three weeks included the emergence of Wiese as a batting powerhouse.

Wiese scored 395 runs and would surely have topped the 400 mark had Sussex managed the strike more sensibly late on against Glamorgan.

His strike rate of 120.42 was Sussex’s best and ranked fourth in the South Group among batsmen who scored at least 200 runs.

Phil Salt was not far behind on 114.76 and his 214 runs at 40.16 is respectable.

But only 104 of those runs came in the six innings apart from his brilliant ton in Kent and it often felt like there was more to come from the Welsh hotshot.

As for the bowlers, when the white balls come back out at Vitality Blast time, it is very conceivable that Will Beer will be left on the sidelines as Rashid Khan returns.

But Beer again underlined his value to the side, not just with the bat at Chelmsford but with his team’s best economy rate across the group fixtures of 5.27.

Mir Hamza’s 18 wickets put him third in the South Group.

Chris Jordan only took two wickets before heading off to England duty and Sussex never saw Jofra Archer or the injured Ollie Robinson.

Gillespie said: “We gave some opportunities to some other guys, the likes of Abi Sakande and George Garton, even the spinners.

“To be able to give the spinners some game time in May is pretty good.”