County Championship round-up: Joy for Sussex at the expense of Somerset


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The Independent Online

Display of the day

Sussex moved to the top of the Championship – temporarily at least – by piling more misery on Somerset, who have now suffered two crushing defeats in a row. Dismissed for 76 in their first innings, the Cidermen subsided with only marginal improvement second time around, bowled out for 108, with Jos Buttler's 29 their highest score in the match.

The game, only in its second day, was over by 2.35pm. There were five Somerset ducks in the contest, while Australian seamer Steve Magoffin's match figures of 12 for 31 following his 8 for 20 in the first innings were the best figures by a Sussex bowler since Mushtaq Ahmed took 13 for 225 against Worcestershire in 2007. Sussex, who have won three of their five matches so far, won the title that year, Mushtaq contributing 90 wickets. This season Magoffin has already bagged 28.

Bowler of the day

David Balcombe's bowling figures for Hampshire against Lancashire at the Ageas Bowl conceal a nightmare start in which the seamer conceded 21 runs in bowling half of his opening over.

Lancashire opener Stephen Moore hit his first ball to the boundary and ran three off the second, which was also a no-ball, a transgression that carries a two-run penalty in the extras column and also counts as runs conceded by the bowler. The next two deliveries also went for four, this time despatched by Luke Procter, to be followed by two more no-balls, which meant Balcombe was 0 for 21, having bowled only three legitimate balls. Amazingly, Balcombe did not bowl another no-ball in that spell or those that followed, and picked up five wickets for good measure.


Australian batsman Simon Katich had a frightening reminder of the damage that can be inflicted by a cricket ball when he was hit on the temple while practising in the nets, forcing him to withdraw from Lancashire's match against Hampshire. Katich was taken to hospital, such was the concern about his well-being, but happily after a day of tests at Southampton General he was discharged with a clean bill of health.