County Championship round-up September 19, 2003

Sussex win by an innings as Yorkshire's hopes are dampened

Wisden CricInfo staff

Frizzell County Championship Division One
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Chris Adams celebrates Sussex's first Championship in their 164-year history

Sussex 614 for 4 dec beat Leicestershire 179 and 380 by innings and 55 runs at Hove
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Jason Lewry rose above the hangovers, to ensure that Sussex's celebrations will be all the wilder this evening - assuming, of course, that any of the team can look a champagne glass in the face. Lewry's career-best figures of 8 for 106 secured an innings victory for Sussex with a day to spare, but they were made to sweat off the alcohol in the first half of the day, thanks to a fifth-wicket stand of 208 between John Sadler and Darren Masters. Masters, who came in as a nightwatchman, made 119 - the first century of his first-class career. Sussex had grabbed two early wickets, including George Walker, who lost concentration when a lady with a shopping bag wandered across the outfield. But with Mushtaq Ahmed off the field with a sore hip, it wasn't until Masters skied a catch to Robin Martin-Jenkins off Billy Taylor, that Lewry took command. Darren Maddy and Paul Nixon fell to consecutive deliveries, and Phil DeFreitas and Vasbert Drakes lasted three balls between them, as Leicestershire's last five wickets tumbled for 27 runs.

Nottinghamshire 376 for 9 dec and 319 for 8 dec v Lancashire 219 and 6 for 0 at Trent Bridge
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Lancashire's forlorn hopes of sneaking the Championship died long ago, but Nottinghamshire are still desperate to avoid the wooden spoon. On this evidence, and with news of Leicester's capitulation filtering north, they will do so with room to spare. Glen Chapple hadn't given up the good fight, however - he picked up all six wickets to fall as Notts slumped to 151, but then Paul Franks led the revival with an even 100. He needed just 112 balls for his innings as he cracked 12 fours and two sixes, and Notts were able to declare for the second time in the match. That left Lancashire facing a tricky period of batting, but bad light came to their aid after three overs.

Surrey 318 and 194 lost to Essex 464 and 49 for 2 by eight wickets at The Oval
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Surrey's second-string team was no match for Essex's Mohammad Akram, who steamed through their flimsy line-up for career-best figures of 8 for 49. Surrey were already up against it after Andy Flower's double-century on the second day, but when they lost Scott Newman and Nadeem Shahid without a run on the board, the end was only a matter of time. Jonathan Batty and James Benning resisted for a time with a pair of 47s, but the only real contest was between Akram and the rest of Essex's bowlers. Akram had picked up all eight of Surrey's early wickets, but Graham Napier ruined his chances of a ten-for with two wickets in three balls. Essex were left to score 49 in their second innings, and eased past the total in less than 10 overs.

Kent 594 beat Warwickshire 267 and 257 by an innings and 70 runs at Canterbury
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Warwickshire's captain Michael Powell did his best to defy gravity, but Kent nevertheless romped to an innings victory with a day to spare, to consolidate fourth place in the Frizzell County Championship. Warwickshire contrived to lose 17 wickets in the day, including 11 for 122 in the morning, as Mark Ealham's canny medium-pace and Andrew Symonds' liquorice allsorts sent them crashing to 55 for 4 in the follow-on. Powell refused to be suckered, and counterattacked impressively in his 110, but Warwickshire's attitude was very end-of-termish. Their lower-order redeemed themselves to a certain extent with a batch of 20s and 30s, but the damage had already been done.

Frizzell County Championship Division Two
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Northamptonshire 196 and 379 beat Worcestershire 172 for 8 dec and 311 by 92 runs at Wantage Road
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To the loser, the spoils. Yesterday, Worcestershire made a crafty decision to declare their first innings at eight-down, which deprived Northants of a vital bonus point and the Second Division title. But Northants did at least extract a measure of revenge with a comprehensive victory today, as their three-pronged spin attack of Jason Brown, Monty Panesar and Graeme Swann twirled through the Worcestershire second innings. Brown was the pick, finishing with 5 for 89, and though Northants encountered some resistance in the lower-middle order, they were comfortable winners by 92 runs. But it is Worcestershire who take the title - by three-quarters of a point.

Yorkshire 476 and 29 for 2 v Gloucestershire 344 at Headingley
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Yorkshire have no option but to win this match if they are to regain their place in the First Division, but the elements were not in their favour today. A paltry 7.5 overs were possible, in which they lost two big wickets. With a frugal lead of 161, they will be forced to go for broke tomorrow. Damien Martyn may be the key - if he can clobber a brisk half-century or better before lunch, they might yet have time to bowl Gloucestershire out on a juicy pitch.

Glamorgan 270 and 464 for 8 dec beat Durham 247 and 118 by 369 runs at Chester-le-Street
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Never mind the overcrowded fixture list - Mike Kasprowicz must wish he could play against Durham every week of the year. For the second time this season, Kasprowicz bowled Glamorgan to a thumping victory over Durham, and for the second time, he picked up nine wickets in their second innings. Kasprowicz's stunning figures of 9 for 45 in 12.5 overs did not quite outshine his 9 for 36 at Cardiff back in August, but the upshot was very much the same. Chasing an unlikely 488 for victory, Durham were reduced to 44 for 7 before Shoaib Akhtar muscled into the picture to slog 37 from 27 balls. But Kasprowicz, bowling fast, full and straight, soon sent him packing. Of his nine victims, seven were lbw or bowled, and the other two were caught by the wicketkeeper, Mark Wallace. Kasprowicz had earlier been involved in a bullish, unbeaten 93-run partnership for the tenth wicket with Darren Thomas - a foretaste of things to come.

Derbyshire 317 and 160 for 4 v Hampshire 580 at Derby
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This week Derbyshire have all but lost their captain, Dominic Cork, and now they have all but lost this match - the wooden-spoon decider. Derbyshire were already up against it overnight, but by the time Hampshire's tail had wagged along to 580 all out, they faced a first-innings deficit of 263, and near-certain defeat. James Hamblin and Shaun Udal were Derbyshire's main tormentors with the bat - Hamblin was eventually dismissed four runs short of his maiden first-class century, while Udal contributed a brisk 57. Their problems were compounded in their reply when Andrew Gait was forced to retire hurt after being clattered in the ribs, but Michael di Venuto and Rawait Khan both scored half-centuries to steady the ship. By the close, however, Derbyshire were four wickets down, and still more than 100 runs adrift.

Yesterday's Championship review