Gloucestershire 201 for 7 (Dent 86*, Payne 48*) v Sussex
Scorecard

Chris Dent and David Payne saved Gloucestershire's blushes on the first day of their final County Championship game of the season against Sussex.

Dent batted through the day, showing terrific resilience on a wicket that provided the visiting bowlers with plenty of lateral movement, but did not get any meaningful support until Payne walked to the crease at 97 for 7.

The pair then peeled off an unbroken 104-run stand for the eighth wicket as Gloucestershire reached 201 for 7.

Sussex were content to field first and made up for a delayed start by taking three Gloucestershire wickets inside 15 overs.

Chris Jordan bowled Gareth Roderick in the sixth over before Steve Magoffin added 19-year-old debutant James Bracey, two overs later, and Ollie Robinson bowled George Hankins to leave the hosts 12 for 3 in the 15th over.

Hamish Marshall, in his last game for the county he has represented so well for the past 10 years, provided temporary resistance, but eventually perished, lbw to Magoffin for 14.

Boundaries were hard to come by and though Phil Mustard hit an early four through extra cover, it was to be his only scoring shot. Magoffin, with his tail up, found an outside edge and Sussex wicketkeeper Ben Brown took the catch.

At 42 for 5, Sussex must have felt they would be batting sooner rather than later.

However, the indomitable Dent stuck to his task and despite losing sixth-wicket partner Jack Taylor cheaply, he joined forces with Craig Miles and then Payne, to guide Gloucestershire towards a total that at one stage, looked nothing more than a pipe dream.

Miles helped himself to 20 before falling to a smart leg-side catch by Brown off Jofra Archer, and thereafter Dent reached his fifty, with seven fours.

Better known for taking wickets than scoring runs, Payne played sensibly at the opposite end and having reached tea, on 143 for 7, Gloucestershire increased the tempo in the final session with Dent finishing the day unbeaten on 86 and Payne 48 not out.

When bad light forced the players off, with 28 overs of the day remaining, the eighth-wicket pair had not only taken the score through the 200 barrier, but had posted their century stand in less than 23 overs.