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Sussex bowlers shine after Wright's record show

Luke Wright plundered 92 Getty Images

Sussex 202 for 8 (Wright 92, Wiese 52, Taylor 4-20) beat Somerset 167 (Abell 48, Anderson 48) by 35 runs
Scorecard

Luke Wright will bring up his 300th T20 match in the Blast final after he bulldozed 92 to set up Sussex's semi-final victory over Somerset. Wright's 53-ball innings was the highest on a Finals Day and, allied to David Wiese's 52 off 29 deliveries, powered Sussex most of the way towards their 202 for 7 in a stand of 120 in 10 overs for the fourth wicket.

It proved more than enough despite a stand of 84 in 7.2 overs between Tom Abell and Corey Anderson. Sussex would have been getting a little nervous as that pair developed and the partnership was only ended when Danny Briggs got a fingertip on a fierce drive from Anderson with Abell out of his ground. From there the game was closed out as Jofra Archer finished with 3 for 32 and Chris Jordan produced a masterclass of yorkers with a maiden in the 17th over.

Sussex's total could have been north of 230 if it hadn't been for an impressive finish from Somerset - the last five overs of the innings going for just 25 and there wasn't a boundary from the last 22 deliveries. Jerome Taylor finished with 4 for 20, but the damage had been done in a mid-innings period in which the 13th and 15th overs went for a combined 58.

Jamie Overton, touted for an England red-ball call-up in the near future, was dispatched for 31 and Lewis Gregory taken for 27. Gregory had the chance to atone as part of the good finish, but Overton was left with one over unbowled - his brother, Craig, who wasn't selected, was seen offered some consoling words on the boundary.

Wright was one of the early generation of England cricketers to start spreading their wings around the T20 world. It's a mark of the riches the national team has in white-ball cricket that he is no longer really part of conversations around those sides. He remains a formidable T20 player and this was a superb innings - laying a base in the early stages, then take the innings by the scruff of the neck himself.

His fifty took 34 deliveries then he started to hurtle towards three figures as he and Wiese - who struck a monstrous six onto the third tier of the newest stand at Edgbaston - ripped the Somerset bowling to shreds. Had Wright found eight more runs he would have stood alone in second place on the T20 century-makers list; instead he remains in a group on seven, staring upwards at Chris Gayle's gargantuan figure of 21 hundreds.

"I'd have taken that at the start, for sure," he told Sky Sports moments after walking off. "We tried to use the wind, it is blowing. I just play when the youngsters are in, then managed to get that over off Overton."

On missing his hundred, he added: "I don't have to buy a jug tonight now. Got to save the wallet these days."

When Wright fell - caught at long-off against Anderson who had been called into emergency bowling duties - the innings fell away. Wiese, whose fifty had come off 26 balls, was the second of two wickets in two balls to conclude Taylor's impressive four overs. It had been an important hand from Wiese because when Delray Rawlins, who had started to find his range against spin, fell Sussex were 73 for 3 in the eighth and the allrounders to come.

But any bounce Somerset may have felt having clawed their way back with the ball did not last long. Archer's pace and bounce accounted for Steven Davies, caught off the shoulder of the bat at point, and then he had Johan Myburgh caught in the covers in what would become his final innings in professional cricket. When James Hildreth fell, Somerset were floundering on 48 for 4 after seven overs.

Abell breathed life into the chase as he took 25 off an over from Briggs, but Anderson took time to get going. He was twice given a life on 9 - a missed stumping and a chance to deep square - before depositing consecutive sixes off Wiese to increase the tension. Then came the tip of Briggs' index finger leaving too much even for the in-form Gregory against the pinpoint yorkers of Jordan.

The result continued the rapid downturn of Somerset's season which over the last two weeks has seen their Championship ambitions fizzle away and now another push for a trophy has come up short. One of the club's finest collections of players still waits for silverware to show for it.