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Wells to the rescue for Sussex

Sussex CCC

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An unbeaten half-century by Luke Wells kept Sussex afloat in their LV= County Championship Division One match against Durham.

On the ground where he scored his maiden first-class century early last season, Wells dug in doggedly to guide the Emirates Durham ICG visitors to 112 for five in their second innings and a lead of 96.

The opener reached 51 and eventually found support from wicketkeeper Ben Brown, who followed his unbeaten first-innings 76 by contributing 12 to an unbroken partnership of 43.

Following the fall of 16 wickets on the first day, Durham's seventh-wicket pair Phil Mustard and Scott Borthwick extended their stand to 83 in the morning.

Luke Wells

Luke Wells contributed vital runs for Sussex, who will seek to set a challenging target for Durham when play resumes tomorrow

They survived until 20 minutes before lunch, but three wickets then went down for one run and, after an hour was lost to rain, Durham were all out for 227.

Mustard survived a few scary moments against Monty Panesar, who was out of luck after starting the day with figures of 2-4 in five overs.

The left-hander sped to 40 but then added only five in 12 overs before falling lbw when propping forward to the fifth ball from Sussex's acting captain Chris Nash.

In the next over, the first of the day for seamer Kirk Wernars, Borthwick departed for 35 when he chipped to short midwicket, where Michael Yardy stuck out his left hand to hold the catch.

Lunch was delayed with nine wickets down but both Graham Onions and Chris Rushworth were dropped and cashed in; they had put on 24 when rain arrived.

Durham failed to add to their total on the resumption as Onions went down the pitch to Panesar and was bowled.

Having fallen to Rushworth's first ball in the first innings, Nash was lbw to the third this time. Needing 16 to reach 1,000 runs for the season, he was out for a duck.

Yardy made 29 before walking into a swinger in Callum Thorp's first over to fall lbw.

Thorp later pinned Wernars with a yorker, while Ben Stokes worked up a lively pace to remove Joe Gatting and Matt Machan.

However, Wells reached his half-century off 96 balls by slicing his eighth four through gully, where he scored a lot of his runs, and was still unbeaten at the close.

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