Lancashire bowl their way to Finals Day

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The Independent Online

Following three successive quarter-final defeats, Lancashire are heading to Twenty20 Finals Day again after an impressive bowling display suffocated Sussex.

The hosts would have fancied chasing 153 but Murray Goodwin, who scored a hundred in their last group game, injured his finger in the field and by the time he came in they had lost five wickets, including the dangerous Lou Vincent for a golden duck.

The veteran slow left-armer Gary Keedy removed Chris Nash (31) and Mike Yardy (23) in three balls and 80 off eight overs proved beyond Sussex, who lacked power hitters in the absence of the injured Luke Wright.

Lancashire's 152 for 8 was below the average at Hove this summer and this was a better batting wicket than most. Stephen Moore was caught behind off the second ball and they failed to accelerate at the end, losing 4 for 19 in the last four overs. But Karl Brown cleared the ropes four times – something Sussex failed to do enough – and although Monty Panesar, whose energetic and much-improved fielding was enjoyed by a full house crowd of 6,500, eventually persuaded Brown to hole out his innings, which proved to be decisive.

*Hampshire have launched an audacious attempt to sign Essex captain James Foster. It is understood Foster, who is out of contract at the end of this season, has said he would be interested in talking to Hampshire and would be offered the role of captain.