Durham made the most of bowling friendly conditions at Seat Unique Riverside on Day 1 of the LV Insurance County Championship as they bowled Sussex out for just 162.
After winning the toss and asking the visitors to bat, Matthew Potts and Ben Raine bowled a lengthy opening spell interspersed with a rain delay to leave Sussex 47-3 at the lunch interval.
Wickets continued to fall after the break. Paul Coughlin chipped in as Sussex’s young batting line up struggled to deal with the moving ball under the floodlights. Ali Orr and Faheem Ashraf were the only batters to score more than 30.
Lower order resistance from Sussex saw the score tick past 150 before Oliver Gibson bowled Sean Hunt to end the innings on 162. Potts and Coughlin led the way with three wickets each.
Hunt then got his revenge by pinning Sean Dickson lbw for 14 as the light constantly threatened to take the players off and eventually succeeded at 5.25pm with Durham 54-1.
It was the perfect toss to win for Scott Borthwick, with the floodlights being on from start of play to close – and it was a no brainer to send Sussex into bat.
The home side made the perfect start as Potts had Sussex skipper Tom Haines caught behind in his second over. Raine then dismissed Tom Alsop and Tom Clark before lunch.
Wickets fell at regular intervals for Sussex, with Dan Ibrahim edging behind to emergency loan signing Chris Benjamin, before Ali Orr’s luck ran out as Potts cleaned up his stumps.
Coughlin then gave the same treatment to James Coles. Debutant Charlie Tear survived a while before eventually falling to Oliver Gibson.
Faheem Ashraf and Jack Carson provided some light resistance, before Durham cleaned it up to leave Sussex 162 all out
Durham made a steady start to their first innings before Dickson was pinned to a Hunt delivery which kept low.
Skipper Scott Borthwick and Michael Jones then saw them through to 54-1 when the umpires took the sides from the field for bad light and ended the day’s play.
Sussex coach James Kirtley said: “Henry (Crocombe) is down at A&E and he’s in quite a bit of pain.
“He’s gone for an x-ray and hopefully we’ll have an update on how his shoulder is doing. I’d be highly surprised if he plays any further part in this game”
Matthew Potts said: “Overheads were with us but we still had to execute. A very good day but tomorrow is very important. Just about trusting the process and the hard work I’ve done but for now.
“I’m focused on backing up spell after spell and playing for the guys around me, whether that’s for Durham or for England.”
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