Allround Wright keeps Sussex fighting
Middlesex 127 for 2 v Sussex 452
Andrew Strauss was dismissed for just eight as Middlesex fought to stay in the game against Sussex in a weather-affected County Championship Division Two match at Uxbridge. England captain Strauss was lbw to Corey Collymore, the former West Indies paceman, as Middlesex reached 127 for 2 in reply to Sussex's 452 all out.
Heavy rain in the morning and late afternoon allowed only 45.3 overs of play on the second day, which Sussex began on 413 for 9 after Luke Wright had completed a brilliant hundred with a pull for six off Steve Finn from the last ball of the opening day. Wright continued to hit out when play finally got under way again at 1.20pm, on-driving Toby Roland-Jones for his fourth six and also striking 14 fours in all before he was caught at the wicket off Finn for 134, from just 122 balls.
Collymore, the Sussex No. 11, helped Wright to add 78 for the 10th wicket - precious runs for the Second Division leaders against the team currently propping up the rest.
Middlesex rallied well following the early loss of Strauss, who has now scored just 423 Championship runs for his county this summer at an average of 30, with John Simpson and Owais Shah putting on 82 in 24 overs for the second wicket.
Simpson, the 22-year-old wicketkeeper acting as a makeshift opener in this game, was fortunate to survive some excellent new-ball bowling from both Collymore and Lewis Hatchett, a 20-year-old left-arm paceman making his Championship debut, but then flourished in the company of Shah.
Collymore rested after an opening spell of one for 24 from eight overs, and Shah opened up after a quiet start to drive Ollie Rayner's off-spin for six over wide long-on besides twice cover-driving him for four in the same over. Monty Panesar settled into a tight spell from the other end, beating Shah with his very first ball and conceding just 13 runs from his six overs before the rain arrived again at 5.05pm.
Wright, however, had by then sent back Shah with his bustling fast-medium, the batsman touching an attempted pull to Matt Prior behind the stumps after scoring 38. Left-hander Simpson remained 58 not out, having batted for two-and-a-half hours and faced 115 balls, hitting nine fours.