Big win puts Sussex in title contention
Sussex are mounting a title bid in the LV= County Championship Division One after a crushing victory over Worcestershire at the PROBIZ County Ground lifted them into third place.
They claimed their fourth win of the season, and third in succession at home, by an innings and 17 runs, having claimed the extra half-hour at the end of the third day.
Worcestershire finished on 141 for nine in their second innings with James Cameron, who had been struck on the side of the helmet by a bouncer from Steve Magoffin, retired hurt and unable to continue his innings.
Once Magoffin and James Anyon had made inroads with the new ball, Worcestershire were sent hurtling to defeat by an excellent spell in the final session from Monty Panesar.
The left-arm spinner took 4-23 from 23 overs, 13 of which were maidens, as Worcestershire lost their last seven wickets for 54 runs.
A pitch offering excellent carry for the seamers and bounce for Panesar was superbly exploited by the Sussex attack.
Anyon picked up Phil Hughes when the left-hander gloved a lifter and Magoffin bowled Vikram Solanki for the second time in the match to give them the perfect start.
Moeen Ali and skipper Daryl Mitchell held Sussex up with a stand of 55 for the third wicket but, when Magoffin returned to the attack to have Moeen well caught by Michael Yardy at second slip, the innings went into swift and steep decline.
At one stage Panesar bowled six successive maidens and also picked up the wickets of Matt Pardoe and Gareth Andrew.
Amjad Khan then came into the attack to trap Richard Jones leg before and Panesar ended Mitchell’s resistance with a quicker ball that uprooted his middle and off stumps and Ben Scott was held at silly point.
It was left to Amjad to seal the win, which put Sussex above Somerset, when he had Jack Shantry caught at slip by Luke Wells.
Earlier, Sussex’s tail added 95 runs in 18 overs before they declared on 420 for eight, a lead of 258.
A shower delayed the resumption and when the players did go out at 12:20pm they promptly returned to the dressing rooms because of concern over a damp patch in the bowlers’ run-ups.
It meant 18 overs were lost, but Sussex soon made up for lost time as Magoffin and Anyon, with a mixture of authentic strokes and more rustic blows, put on 40 for the eighth wicket before Alan Richardson claimed his fifth wicket of the innings when Magoffin played on for 41 aiming through the off side.
Anyon pressed on to score his second half-century of the season and, when the declaration came, he had made 56 off 60 balls with eight fours, although he was dropped by Mitchell on 38 when the Worcestershire captain just failed to cling onto a mis-timed pull after running across from second slip.