Recent Match Report – Sussex vs Middlesex Round 17 2022

middlesex 358 (Hollman 82, Simpson 71, Holden 58, Andersson 55, Robinson 5-66) and 370 for 3 (Robson 149, Holden 80*, Handscomb 79) beaten sussex 392 (Alsop 113, Orr 99, Garton 53) and 335 for December 4 (Pujara 170*, Clark 77, Alsop 66) by seven wickets

A cheeky batting display, led by centurion Sam Robson, carried Middlesex to a stunning seven-wicket win over Sussex on the final day of their Championship contest at Hove.

In a scintillating end to what had been a thrilling game over the four days, Middlesex chased down 370 on the back of Robson’s claimed 149 and fifty to Peter Handscomb and Max Holden, who was unbeaten on 80 at the end.

Holden staged a 99-run fourth wicket with Martin Andersson, promoted from No.8 to No.5 for Middlesex’s second innings, with just 82 balls to see the visitors cross the line in a game where Sussex had held the upper hand to all except the last two sessions. The pair, who had both scored half-centuries in the opening innings, chewed the target with such vigor that they needed just seven runs from the final four overs and came in with 19 balls to go. resell.

The Sussexes had to think about what might have happened if they hadn’t wasted time in poor light and rain on Saturday, which ultimately influenced their second innings statement.

The hosts took over 236 for 3 with the in-form Cheteshwar Pujara unbeaten on 125. Having played 52 first-class innings without a century, Pujara has been on a hot streak since joining Sussex, breaking his drought with a superb 201 not against Derbyshire on his debut for the county and then with a ton against Worcestershire and 203 against Durham.

He looked on course for another brace before batting partner Tom Clark, with whom he had scored 191 for the fourth wicket, fell, prompting Sussex captain Tom Haines to state half an hour before the lunch with a 369 lead and Pujara undefeated on 170.

There was drama before Clark, lbw was fired at Luke Hollman for 77, as he and Pujara spent a glorious morning by the sea pushing the hosts’ advantage.

Middlesex, already without key bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi, who was not feeling well, lost top hitter Robbie White to a bizarre injury on the pitch as he tried to cut one of the 25 limits of Pujara, which included three sixes. As Pujara drove Ethan Bamber halfway for some four, White valiantly dove to his right trying to parry the ball with his left hand and landed clumsily. White was taken from the pitch on a stretcher with what was later confirmed to be a dislocated left shoulder.

Clark survived the 43 when he gained inside advantage on a Blake Cullen delivery and beat wicketkeeper John Simpson as he walked away for four. Clark lifted his fifty shortly later with a brisk tug-of-war through extra coverage from Bamber. Pujara, too, was released on 166 when he was taken down by Mark Stoneman off Hollman at extra cover.

To compound Stoneman’s woes, he was absent in the second leg of Middlesex, lbw’s response to Aaron Beard as the visitors fell 1-for-1 chasing 370 from 77 overs.

Sussex lacked penetration midway through the session as Robson and Handscomb added 138 points to the Middlesex cause. Several bowlers are still missing through injury and with Ollie Robinson and George Garton making their first appearances in months, the hosts have lacked firepower, the former spending a brief time off the field after playing nine times and the latter used sparingly after its long battle with covid.

Robson hit his fifty balls from 74 while Handscomb went for tea on 47 from 107, meaning Middlesex would need 231 from 38 overs in the final session. They went at it with good application, no sooner had Robson lifted his ton than he fired Sean Hunt for six to move to 107. It was the first time Robson had gone past fifty in a first-class game since his 253 in the corresponding game. last September.

Handscomb, meanwhile, had already raised his fifty – just his second in 17 innings for Middlesex. But Robinson, who had taken five wickets in the first innings, proved his worth again as soon as he returned to attack. He struck with his third ball back, trapping Handscomb lbw for 79 to end the second wicket partnership on 209 with Middlesex still needing 160 runs.

Robinson only managed three overs in his second spell, but when he returned he made an immediate impact again, ending Robson’s charge with another lbw.

Andersson and Holden continued their spirited pursuit. Holden raised his second half of the game from 49 balls, carving seven fours along the way. With 10 overs remaining, Middlesex needed 58 runs to win and Andersson duly crushed Beard for six and from there the pair made victory look like a walk down the boardwalk.

Valkerie Baynes is an editor at ESPNcricinfo

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