Finn shines in Middlesex triumph
Steven Finn did his hopes of receiving an England Test recall no harm with three scalps as Middlesex defeated Sussex by 10 wickets at Lord's to claim their third LV= County Championship win of the summer.
Finn followed up his three first-innings wickets with 3-66 as Sussex were bowled out for 225 in their second innings. That left Middlesex with a target of 18 and they completed a 10-wicket victory 40 minutes after tea on the final day.
Middlesex looked like wrapping up proceedings early when they reduced Sussex to 101 for five prior to lunch.
They were delayed by Ben Brown's second half-century of the match, but, when he and Naveed Arif Gondal departed in successive overs, Sussex were heading for their second successive championship defeat.
Finn, who had already picked up Ed Joyce on the third evening, was hit for two fours by Chris Nash in his first over of the day but hit back in the next when he cleaned up the Sussex opener with a leg-stump yorker.
Finn struck again when Murray Goodwin was smartly taken low down at second slip by Ollie Rayner. It was Goodwin's ninth single-figure score in 11 innings this season.
There was no respite for Sussex when Gareth Berg replaced Finn at the Pavilion End. Joe Gatting was leg before in the seamer’s first over and then Finn got in the act in the field, holding a two-handed catch when Luke Wright chased a wide ball and slashed to gully.
Skipper Michael Yardy also got out to a poor shot, pulling a short ball from Toby Roland-Jones straight to deep square-leg.
Finn returned after lunch and should have been celebrating again when Naveed was badly dropped in the gully by Eoin Morgan on nought. He eventually got off the mark with a boundary off his 34th ball and gradually Sussex's seventh-wicket pair mounted a recovery of sorts.
Brown twice pulled Roland-Jones for two of the eight fours he collected in a two-hour 53 as he and Naveed added 63 in 25 overs, seven of which were bowled by Finn at a cost of just five runs.
Just when Middlesex were getting frustrated, Berg went round the wicket to have Naveed well caught low down at slip by Dawid Malan. In the next over, Brown - having reached his fifty off the previous ball - mis-judged a reverse sweep at off-spinner Rayner and gave a simple catch to slip.
Steve Magoffin enjoyed himself either side of tea with 37, including six fours and a six off Malan, but the occasional leg-spinner picked up the last two wickets with Magoffin and Monty Panesar holing out.