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REPORT: Late wickets for Briggs after tough day at Northampton

05-Sep-2017

Two wickets for Danny Briggs at the end of day one of the Specsavers County Championship match against Northamptonshire kept Sussex’s hopes of a fourth win in as many games alive.

Simon Kerrigan was trapped in-front with the last ball of the day after he had come in as a nightwatchman following Briggs’ dismissal of Ben Duckett.

Duckett was caught and bowled by the slow-left armer, but not before the opening batsman had made 193 off 200 deliveries.

After rain washed out the morning session, play got underway at 1.00pm with Sussex having foregone a toss and decided to field after lengthy consideration. 

Jofra Archer and Ollie Robinson - fresh from his match winning heroics at Colwyn Bay last week - took the new ball but were unable to take an early wicket. 

David Wiese made the breakthrough in the 24th over of the day with the score on 91 when he bowled Rob Newton via an inside edge.

Duckett was almost run out soon after when on 55, but Robson’s throw was wide of the stumps.

Sussex didn’t have to wait too long for a second wicket, however, with Luke Wright taking a high catch off the bowling of Robinson to dismiss Alex Wakely and leave the home side 119-2 after 27.5 overs.

A third wicket was harder to come by as Duckett and Richard Levi put on 96 either side of tea.

Duckett began to up the pace after the interval, bringing up his century with the score on 180-2, and continued to do so even after Archer took his 55th wicket of the campaign  when Levi was caught in the deep by Angus Robson for 44. 

As the evening session progressed and the gap between Duckett’s runs scored and balls faced narrowed, it looked as if the England batsman would make a second double-century in as many matches against Sussex at Wantage Road. 

The bowlers persisted, however, and Danny Briggs took the crucial wicket with six overs remaining. Kerrigan's dismissal soon after left Northants on 329-5 at stumps.

Speaking at the close, Sussex Head Coach Mark Davis said: “It was a tough day. Full marks to Ben, he chanced his arm and hits boundaries and is hard to contain.

“Anyone that gets a big score is always going to have a few moments go their way, that’s the nature of the game. We could have bowled better but he scored a decent hundred.

“It's an interesting pitch and we weren’t sure what team we were going to play. There’s a bit of grass on the pitch and slightly shaved at the ends so it was difficult to know what to do."

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