Chilton chips the gloss off Sussex

Lancashire 242-7 Sussex 230-9 Lancashire win by 12 runs

Amid some fanfare a few years ago, it was decreed that cricket's oldest and best knock-out competition would become like football's equivalent. It worked as well. Both now have a couple of initials to identify them. Unfortunately, this well-intentioned ploy by the marketing mandarins at Lord's, determined to appease the shires and sex up the county game, coincided more or less with that period when the FA Cup was losing its allure. Even then, the letters C & G Trophy, which it has been since 2001, could hardly compete.

Sussex appeared in the last final thriller, in 1993, when Warwickshire somehow overhauled their total of 323. They will not be involved in one this year, having been defeated by Lancashire. The margin was 12 runs, a country mile in modern one-day cricket, and for much of the Sussex innings it would have taken an extraordinary effort to engineer victory.

Sussex are the County Champions but they needed a decent run in the C & G after a stuttering start to their Championship defence. The theory was that long-suffering supporters who have waited a lifetime for a Championship - and their parents a lifetime before that - could rest in peace without further success. The practice is they want more, immediately. They could perhaps have done without Lancashire, who look as well-rounded as they have done for years. Their performance exuded efficiency, though like the Hove pitch, it was not flawless.

The surface was sporting from the off - it helped in severely bruising three fingers - and the Sussex captain, Chris Adams, sensing, or hoping, it would only improve, decided to field. There were four important innings for Lancashire, but none seemed to have put daylight between the teams. Mal Loye's well-crafted half-century came to an end in the 28th over just when it looked as though the innings would revolve round him. Mark Chilton took over the anchor role with Andrew Flintoff primed for the big late hit.

Both were out at a stage when Lancashire would have preferred otherwise. Flintoff, whose eyes perform the unlikely trick of both lighting up and glazing over when confronted by class spin, was leg before, hitting across the line against Mushtaq Ahmed. Mushtaq bowled shrewdly but controversially. He was carrying a thigh injury and as soon as he finished his quota of overs he set off to leave the field. Lancashire understandably queried this, but Mushtaq's limp won the day and the umpires' hearts.

Chilton, with a well-crafted 62 in 78 balls, provided solidity until the 46th over, Carl Hooper supplied some late, lovely impetus. A powerful six over midwicket was followed by the daintiest of late cuts for four. He was the first to be struck, had to bat largely with one hand and did not take the field.

Soon Sussex had their own casualty and it gave them a terrible start. The in-form Ian Ward was struck on the hand by James Anderson's lifting second ball and went off for ice treatment. They then lost three quick wickets with the ball lifting ostentatiously. Richard Montgomerie was held at slip, Murray Goodwin, trying to turn to leg, was remarkably caught by Chilton at short midwicket aided by a telescopic left arm atop a height of 6ft 3ins. That put him in the frame for Man of the Match, which he did get. Matt Prior, with bat away from body, also nicked to slip.

The rebuilding job was effected by Adams and Matthew Yardy, though not without good fortune. Adams was dropped on eight by Flintoff and on 36 by Law, both in the slips and both eminently catchable.

Flintoff deserved his wicket, another lifter accounting for Yardy, again in the the slips. While Adams and Robin Martin-Jenkins were together Sussex were not without hope but Lancashire, especially Flintoff and Anderson, bowled straight and with movement at lively pace. Adams went for 51, attempting something a mite extravagant.

Martin-Jenkins lost partners regularly, two to run-outs, first the returning Ward first ball and then Mohammad Akram to a splendid piece of Flintoff acrobatics, following through in his run-up and then twisting, leaping and throwing in what looked like one movement. He was left unbeaten on 62.

In the splendid account of Sussex's historic Championship, The Longest Journey, the authors, Bruce Talbot and Paul Weaver, record that more romance was given to their triumph because they had overcome Surrey and Lancashire, two giants of the game. "But having taken up squatter's rights on the big boys' stage how long will it be before we can celebrate again?" Could be quite a wait.

Quarter-final draw: Lancashire v Yorkshire (Old Trafford); Warwickshire v Ireland or Northamptonshire (Edgbaston); Worcestershire v Essex (Worcester); Gloucestershire v Middlesex (Bristol). To be played Tue 15 June and Wed 16 June.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
food + drink
Life and Style
Shoppers in Covent Garden, London, celebrate after they were the first to buy the iPhone 6, released yesterday
tech
News
Liam Payne has attacked the media for reporting his tweet of support to Willie Robertson and the subsequent backlash from fans
peopleBut One Direction star insists he is not homophobic
Life and Style
healthFor Pure-O OCD sufferers this is a reality they live in
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvSeries 5 opening episode attracts lowest ratings since drama began
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Affleck stars as prime suspect Nick Dunne in the film adaptation of Gone Girl
filmBen Affleck and Rosamund Pike excel in David Fincher's film, says Geoffrey Macnab
Life and Style
fashion
News
news
News
people
Travel
Warner Bros released a mock-up of what the new Central Perk will look like
travel
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments