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REPORT & HIGHLIGHTS: Sussex beaten by Yorkshire at Headingley

25-Sep-2015

Michael Yardy, on his final innings in cricket, shakes the hands of the opposing Yorkshire players

Sussex were unable to secure either the draw or win today at Yorkshire that would have saved them from the drop, as a 100 run defeat to the champions at Headingley saw them relegated to Division Two.

Set 309 in 92 overs, Sussex lost their first five wickets in 20 overs to the combined pace of Jack Brooks and Tim Bresnan.

Yorkshire decided to bat on in the morning on 298 for 9 and seven runs had been added when Bresnan drove the ninth ball of the day from Steve Magoffin straight to Lewis Hatchett at long on.

Sussex were quickly in trouble at 39 for 3, all the wickets falling in a destructive opening burst from Brooks. Ed Joyce inside-edged onto his stumps, Chris Jordan was LBW and Matt Machan was caught behind by Jonny Bairstow. Machan's dismissal was Brooks' 65th wicket of the season and the 300th of his career.

He was rested with figures of 7-1-25-3 and Bresnan took over from the Kirkstall Lane and wasted no time in making his own mark. Chris Nash was bowled and Luke Wright was held behind by Bairstow moving to his right.

For the second time in the match, Yardy came in to bat with Sussex in crisis and he was still there at lunch with Ben Brown who completed 1,000 Championship runs for the season upon reaching 12.

The sixth wicket pair went into the afternoon session with Sussex on 88 for 5 and for a while it appeared as if they might succeed in pulling off a rescue act.

Brown was doubly fortunate to edge consecutive balls from Liam Plunkett through a vacant third slip but Yardy cover drove him for four and leg-glanced Brooks to the boundary as the runs mounted.

But with the stand worth 81, Yardy was out. He went to hook a Bresnan bouncer but it lobbed off the glove for Alex Lees to hold on at first slip.

Yardy had contributed 41 in 85 minutes from 70 balls with seven boundaries and his playing career with Sussex had come to a close. He was given a guard-of-honour by his team-mates when he led the side on to the field in the morning, later applauded to the wicket and then given a standing ovation upon his dismissal, each Yorkshire player shaking his hand as he made his final exit.

Three overs later, Brown struck Adil Rashid off the middle of the bat for Jack Leaning to take a reflex catch at short leg and the leg-spinner then trapped Steve Magoffin lbw.

Sussex were 151 for 8 with an hour to go until tea and Ashar Zaidi smacked 47 off 40 deliveries before being lbw sweeping at Adam Lyth. Rashid brought down the curtain at 3.10pm when Chris Liddle was also LBW.

Soon after the conclusion of the match and in bright sunshine, Yorkshire skipper Andrew Gale lifted high the Trophy for the third time - but the first in front of the ecstatic home fans. First, officially, at Lord's, then at Southampton and now at their own headquarters after it was handed to Gale by the Club's president, 'Dickie' Bird. 

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