Wright returns with crucial fifty
Sussex 180 (Wright 59, Daggett 4-31) beat Northamptonshire 168 for 7 (Sales 51) by 12 runs
England allrounder Luke Wright struck a half-century as the Sussex defeated the Northamptonshire by 12 runs in a low-scoring encounter in the Clydesdale Bank 40.
Sussex were bowled out for 180 inside 36 overs with Lee Daggett taking 4 for 31 and Wright, who was playing his first match of the season after IPL duties and illness, top-scoring by blasting 59 off 57 balls. Despite David Sales' 51 off 70 deliveries, Northamptonshire fell short of their meagre target as they were limited to 168 for 7, Will Beer claiming 2 for 21.
Sussex won the toss and chose to bat and lost Ireland batsman Ed Joyce for 23 when he missed his attempted sweep off James Middlebrook and the ball went on to hit his leg stump. This broke an opening stand of 73 with Wright and Matt Machan then faced five balls without scoring before he edged Daggett to Northants wicketkeeper David Murphy.
Three deliveries later, former Zimbabwe international Murray Goodwin followed him back to the pavilion when he edged Daggett to Sales at slip. Wright went on to complete an explosive half-century off just 44 balls but Joe Gatting made only four before being bowled by Con de Lange.
Wright then perished when he launched Middlebrook to David Willey at long on before Sharks wicketkeeper Ben Brown was trapped lbw by de Lange after plundering 20. Beer was the next to fall when he was caught and bowled by de Lange before Lee Daggett's delivery careered into Sussex captain Michael Yardy's off stump after he had reached 39.
Daggett then pinned Amjad Khan lbw before Northants skipper Andrew Hall brought the innings to an end when England spinner Monty Panesar chipped him to Daggett at mid-off.
Chasing 181, the the home side lost Willey in the third over when he was bowled by Yardy and Kyle Coetzer followed for the same score when his off stump was taken out by Wright.
Opener Stephens Peters looked well set on 39 but he threw his wicket away when he smashed ex-Northants man Panesar to Machan at long off. Sales hung around to reach 50 off 67 balls but he soon fell when he was caught leg before by Beer after missing his sweep shot and Middlebrook departed with the very next ball by chipping Beer to Joyce at midwicket.
Rob White was dismissed for 29 in the penultimate over when he launched Chris Liddle high into the air and was taken by Brown before Hall hammered the same bowler to Beer at deep midwicket.