Brian Pollard reports from the Probiz County Ground
A wonderful spell of hostile bowling from Hove pace man Rana Naved – before an unbeaten century parnership from the openers – hauled Sussex right back into this game going into tea on day three of this LV= county championship match against Somerset.
Sussex, already trailing by 36 runs after the first innings, had been facing an enormous deficit after seeing Somerset reach 206-5 at lunch.
But the hosts ripped through the Somerset lower order after lunch, taking the last five wickets for just 29 runs in 10.2 overs.
And Rana was responsive for all five wickets, taking 4-12 in 5.2 overs as well as securing a direct hit run out.
First to go was Jos Buttler for 8 in the third over after lunch. Rana then trapped Lewis Gregory lbw for 2 in his following over. The in-form Pakistani bowler followed that up by running out Gemaal Hussain for 11, before mopping up the tail in consecutive balls by trapping Steve Kirby lbw for 1 and clean bowling Willoughby for a golden duck.
Rana’s superb mini-spell left Sussex with a very attainable target of 272 to win with a day and a half’s play left scheduled in this match – and certainly a more gettable target than the home spectators would have been fearing during luch ahead of the day’s middle session.
It was only Rana’s second ever 10-wicket haul for Sussex, the 33-year-old returning 5-82 in 23.2 overs to complement his 5-79 in the first innings – curiously also bagged in exactly 23.2 overs.
Sussex, in reply, got off to an excellent start in their second innings, reaching 105 for the loss of no wickets at tea here at Hove.
Chris Nash reached his half century with a crisp drive to the boundary through mid-off. His 62-ball 50 included eight fours. Ed Joyce is unbeaten on 41 off 83 balls at tea while Nash is 57 not out off 71 balls.
Sussex had yesterday been bowled out for a disappointing 177 in response to Somerset’s first innings score of 213. Former England Ashes hero Marcus Trescothick claimed two half centuries in the match, with a 63 in the first innings followed by a 79 in the second. Sussex pace bowler James Anyon picked up five wickets in the match, taking 2-61 and 3-39 in each Somerset innings.