Wright and Brown give Sussex edge
Durham 164 and 2 for 0 trail Sussex 328 (Wright 87, Brown 64) by 162 runs
Champions Durham could end the season with a defeat after Sussex took control on the second day of their Championship match at Hove. Just 36.2 overs were possible because of bad light and after several inspections play was called off at 5pm with Durham 2 for 0 in their second innings.
Sussex were earlier bowled out for 328 to earn themselves a first-innings lead of 164, after an excellent recovery by their lower order from 90 for 5. Luke Wright (87) missed out on a century but Ben Brown (64) and Ashar Zaidi scored valuable runs to give their side a useful advantage.
Wright resumed on 74 and showed his intent in the first over of the day when he took two boundaries off the country's leading wicket-taker, Graham Onions. He had a reprieve on 83 when a mistimed off drive just eluded extra cover but there was little Wright could do with the delivery that bowled him as Chris Rushworth got one to nip back and keep low. Wright's runs came off 78 balls with 16 fours and a six.
At that stage Sussex's lead was a modest 39 but Brown and Zaidi batted impressively in a stand of 83 in 20 overs for the seventh wicket.
Zaidi is playing only his second first-class match in four years and hoping to earn a permanent contract with Sussex. Originally from Pakistan, he moved to England to play club cricket for Accrington in the Lancashire League and got his opportunity a fortnight ago after a successful trial in Sussex's second team.
He began by hooking his first ball from Rushworth for six and attacked at every opportunity, hitting six fours. Brown gave him excellent support and Zaidi was in sight of a half-century when he was caught at slip off Ben Stokes. He left the field angrily and the umpires called Stokes and Paul Collingwood, Durham's captain, into their room at lunch to discuss it further.
Brown, who had come to the crease with Sussex in trouble on 90 for 5, reached his fifth half-century of the season before driving to point to give legspinner Scott Borthwick his first wicket just before lunch.
Chris Jordan was well held at slip by Collingwood when he propped forward to Borthwick before Onions, who had been unusually expensive by his high standards, picked up his third wicket after switching ends when Steve Magoffin edged to second slip.
There had already been one brief stoppage when thick mist rolled over the ground two balls into Durham's second innings. The umpires made several inspections during the afternoon but with no breeze to shift the mist the light did not improve sufficiently for there to be a restart.