reports from Edgbaston
Warwickshire 180-8 Sussex 166 Warwickshire win by 14 runs
Nick Knight, the Warwickshire batsman capped immediately before this match, was carried off after colliding in the field with Trevor Penney during the final overs. Knight received immediate medical attention, regained consciousness after a minute, and was taken to Birmingham General Hospital. He was detained overnight with concussion.
Penney, who had held a catch to dismiss Ian Salisbury a fraction of a second before impact, suffered a cut across the nose.
Almost single-handed Paul Smith had kept the game alive until 7.55pm. Warwickshire's beneficiary this season made 85 from 86 balls and then took three wickets in 11 deliveries when Sussex were coasting to victory. Neil Smith returned a competition best 6 for 33.
Warwickshire must rue their omission of Paul Smith from the opening three Benson and Hedges Cup matches when they lost one of the three titles won last summer.
Knight and Smith were both run out after they had taken intrepid singles in a third-wicket partnership of 129 from 23 overs, Knight made 59 from 83 balls before being beaten by Ed Giddins' throw from long-on.
Franklin Stephenson also contributed handsomely to the entertainment, taking five for 38.
Stephenson, who is bowing out of county cricket in September, will continue to play for Orange Free State next winter but plans to concentrate his energies next summer on the bar he has bought in Barbados. He was at the centre of some flawed Sussex thinking when they chased an attainable target.
They had made 85 through Jamie Hall and Keith Greenfield from 15 overs and promoted Stephenson to first wicket down whereupon he promptly flashed at a widish ball and was caught for a single at the wicket.
Three Warwickshire batsmen had the out-first-ball experience - Neil Smith,Trevor Penney and Keith Piper. The odds were stacked against Warwickshire but the Smiths thought otherwise and proved their point.Reuse content