Hoggard hat-trick inspires Yorkshire
Matthew Hoggard took a hat-trick to inspire Yorkshire to an extraordinary 156-run victory against Sussex at Hove as the home side folded for 83 in under 26 overs on the final afternoon. It leaves Sussex on the verge of relegation heading into their final match against Nottinghamshire next week. Yorkshire are within touching distance of safety and need five points to ensure it, while they have also pulled Lancashire a little closer to the drop zone. Sussex were already struggling when Hoggard returned for his second spell having earlier removed Joe Gatting and run-out Rory Hamilton-Brown from third man. He dismissed Andrew Hodd, Dwayne Smith and Piyush Chawla caught at second slip in three balls in Yorkshire's first hat-trick since 1998 and Hoggard's second after his effort against West Indies, in Barbados, in 2004. David Wainwright, the left-arm spinner, then took the final two scalps to finish with 4 for 12 as Michael Yardy was left forlornly on 13 not out. It was a dramatic turnaround after Sussex appeared to have given themselves an outside chance of victory as they chipped away at Yorkshire's batting. Jacques Rudolph fell to the first ball of the day from Chawla, who claimed three further wickets during a lengthy spell. When Azeem Rafiq was bowled by Smith the lead was 201, but Hoggard hit 26 off 24 in a final-wicket stand of 38 with Wainwright. A couple of hours later the same pair were match-winners.
Worcestershire couldn't claim their first win of the season as Somerset fought back to secure a draw at Taunton. John Ward watched the action.
An absorbing final day in Cardiff ended with Glamorgan one wicket short of victory for the second week running and Gloucestershire 13 runs shy of their target. In a bold move, Jamie Dalrymple declared on the overnight lead which left all day for the visitors to chase 294. Both teams needed victory to close the gap on second-placed Essex and will need a host of results to go their way next week to earn promotion. Dalrymple and Robert Croft shared six wickets, but couldn't quite wrap up the match in time as Steve Kirby blocked out a maiden. Glamorgan struck early when James Harris removed Stephen Adshead for a duck, but Hamish Marshall sped to 35 from 29 balls before Harris struck again. At 126 for 2, Gloucestershire were well placed until Croft removed Alex Gidman for 52. Dalrymple struck twice in the middle and Croft then claimed William Porterfield for 81 from 248 balls. Despite wickets falling, Gloucestershire managed to chip away at the target as Jon Lewis made 28. Lewis fell in the penultimate over but the final pair managed to hold out.