Gurney's five hurtles Nottinghamshire to first win
Nottinghamshire 255 (Wood 100, Gidman 57, Magoffin 6-109) and 243 (Patel 100, Wood 53, Magoffin 6-50) beat Sussex 189 (Cachopa 54, Ball 6-49) and 150 (Gurney 5-43, Ball 3-18) by 159 runs
Five wickets for Harry Gurney - a career-best 5 for 43 in fact - ensured that the magnificent contribution of the two rookie pace bowlers, Luke Wood and Jake Ball, was made to count as Sussex were finished off in 32 overs in rather a tame end to what had been a contest of fluctuating fortunes, bowled out for 150 five overs into the afternoon session on the third day of the scheduled four.
It gave Nottinghamshire a first win of the season after a worryingly inconsistent start for a county seemingly laden with talented. Ball, the 24-year-old right-armer, finished with 9 for 67 from the match, 19-year-old Wood 5 for 96 plus, of course, the little matter of 153 runs - a maiden century followed by 53 in the second innings - which suggests he is more than just a promising left-arm seamer.
It leaves director of cricket Mick Newell facing an unexpected selection dilemma for Nottinghamshire's next Championship match, against Somerset at Taunton the week after next, when he will have the former Australian Test bowler Ben Hilfenhaus available after arriving to replace Vernon Philander in the overseas slot, as well as Stuart Broad, now available after being omitted from England's one-day international squad.
Someone is going to be unlucky and it is not easy to identify who. With Michael Lumb likely to return from injury to bolster the top order but with Alex Hales and James Taylor away on England duty, Newell will go with four seamers instead of three, which opens up one place.
"You are probably looking at two from three of Jake, Luke and Harry," Newell said. "We have a lot of Twenty20 cricket in June so that comes into it and Luke will only play red ball cricket, so he has a good chance. And we'll look at where we are with Jake and Harry when that game comes around.
"Jake has been terrific in this game. I've said before that he has been out best bowler going back to our pre-season tour and like Harry he can do well in all forms of the game, so we'll have the option to share things round."
Mark Robinson, the Sussex cricket manager, would love a headache of that nature. With Tymal Mills, Ajmal Shahzad, Ashar Zaidi, James Anyon and Lewis Hatchett all injured, and Chris Jordan picked for the England ODI squad, his bowling resources could not be more stretched.
At least Steve Magoffin appears to be unbreakable. The 35-year-old Australian took 12 wickets in this match, six in each innings, to take him to 35 for the Championship season so far. Robinson says Magoffin has yet to find a level of consistency the bowler himself believes to be satisfactory so far, although there were phases in this match when he looked close to his best. It is only the third time in his career he has taken 10 or more in a match. Goodness knows what he will achieve if he can return to peak form.
Despite all the injuries, Sussex went into this match only 18 points behind the Division One leaders with a game in hand, so they are hardly struggling. The absence of Ed Joyce undermined their potential with the bat here on a difficult wicket, yet Robinson believed it was by letting Nottinghamshire off the hook twice in the match when his bowlers were on top that cost Sussex dearly.
"The young lad Wood took it away from us in the first innings and then after having them seven down for 108 to let them get near to 250 on a 150 wicket left us massively behind the eight ball," he said.
"I was disappointed that we started to feel a bit sorry for ourselves towards the end of the second day and I think that carried over a bit. But for the last four games we have played on result wickets and the batsmen are a bit shell-shocked, really, and they need to get some confidence back."
Nottinghamshire's last three second-innings wickets went in the space of 20 balls into the morning session. Wood thick-edged Ollie Robinson to point for 53 before Samit Patel completed his first century since the corresponding match in April last year, but then the innings ended rather rapidly with Patel top-edging his next ball to be caught at point and then Ball swinging at one and getting a nick as Magoffin finished with two wickets in two balls.
That gave him 6 for 50 and 12 for 159 for the match. It is the second time the Australian has taken 12 wickets in a match although not his career best. Against Somerset in 2013 he took 8 for 20 and 4 for 11.
Sussex needed 310 to win but they were quickly two down as both Mike Yardy and Matt Machan were out without scoring, both leg before to Ball. In match of duplications - three six-wicket hauls, two men out the ball after reaching 100 - Ball found himself on a hat-trick for the second time in the match, and as in the first innings by taking wickets with the last ball of one over and the first of the next. Chris Nash survived but then Brendan Taylor, who had dropped Luke Wells once, held on to a second chance offered by the left-hander off Wood.
Chris Nash fended off a brutish ball from Wood into the hands of short leg before Gurney began a run of five wickets in 43 balls by having Craig Cachopa caught behind, then bowling Luke Wright for 39. Jordan and Robinson went to consecutive balls, after which Magoffin and Ben Brown at least extended the contest beyond lunch, adding 52 for the ninth wicket before Magoffin missed one and Ball claimed the final scalp.
Patel, now 30 and until recently the last graduate of the Nottinghamshire academy system to find a permanent home in the first team, heralded the progress of Wood and Ball.
"To see the way Luke Wood played in the first innings, that's what won us the game," Patel said. "And he played with a lot of maturity in the second innings too.
"Jake has come on leaps and bounds and the pace he has gained his crucial. If you are to survive at this level you have to have a bit of pace. People talk about us needing to bring local talent through and to see them doing so well as local lads is fantastic."