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Sharks toast Beer effort

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Sussex moved into pole position to qualify for the Clydesdale Bank 40 semi-finals after leapfrogging Warwickshire at the top of Group C following a 17-run victory.

The third-placed Bears were dismissed for 182 in the final over replying to a modest 199 for nine to leave Sussex needing to beat Yorkshire and Kent to secure their place in the last four.

Warwickshire and Kent, however, can still go through if the leaders slip up.

Sussex’s spinners were the key to victory; they bowled 21 overs between them on a slow pitch. Michael Yardy set the tone by conceding just 23 runs in his eight overs, before Will Beer took centre stage.

Will Beer

Will Beer claimed 3-27 as Sussex moved top of Group C in the Clydesdale Bank 40 by beating previous leaders Warwickshire by 17 runs

Having run out Will Porterfield, the leg-spinner starred after being brought into the attack by having Tim Ambrose caught behind and Jim Troughton stumped.

Beer completed his haul when he bowled Darren Maddy off an inside edge on his way to figures of 3-27.

Off-spinner Chris Nash had the dangerous Rikki Clarke caught at extra-cover and returned in the 38th over to end a threatening 52-run stand between Keith Barker and Steffan Piolet by bowling the former as he tried to clear the leg-side boundary.

That left Warwickshire needing 34 off the last three overs, and Nash secured victory in the last when he castled Chris Wright to finish with 3-27.

Earlier, Sussex had been indebted to Yardy, who made the only half-century of the match.

Wright took three wickets in nine balls - including that of namesake Luke for a golden duck - to reduce Sussex to 34 for three in the seventh over.

Yardy and Murray Goodwin then put on 62, only for the latter to play on to Jeetan Patel’s quicker ball for 36; the New Zealand off-spinner also picked up Joe Gatting to finish with 2-29.

At 125 for six in the 27th over, Sussex were in trouble. But Kirk Wernars counter-attacked before Yardy chipped a catch to mid-on, having hit five fours in his 61.

Wernars finished unbeaten on 37 and a target of 200 proved beyond a Warwickshire side whose hopes of reaching the last four may have been fatally damaged by two defeats in the space of 48 hours.

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