4 wickets from Tim Linley has helped Surrey bowl Sussex out on Day two of the LV County Championship game at Arundel.
Despite a half century from Michael Yardy, Linley claimed figures of 4-62 as the league leaders could only make 295 after the washout yesterday.
The start was once again delayed this morning, but for just 15 minutes this time due to early morning drizzle. The toss was won by Vikram Solanki and in favourable overhead conditions he elected to field first, with Jon Lewis and Gary Keedy the two players from the 13 man squad to be left out of the final X1.
Chris Nash and Surrey’s nemesis of the last two season Luke Wells opened the batting for the hosts, but Dernbach made sure that the classy left hander didn’t improve on his average of over 100 against us by trapping him LBW for just 3. Despite that early wicket the pitch didn’t seem to be doing much for the seamers, so taking advantage of the new ball and the conditions was vital. However, Nash and Yardy steadied the ship well until Linley had the former caught by Solanki for 32 10 minutes before the lunch break.
After choosing to bowl Solanki would have wanted at least 3 or 4 wickets inside the first session, but that wasn’t to be, but after a flurry of boundaries after the interval, the Viscount had his second when captain Ed Joyce was caught behind. Ex-skipper Yardy was joined by Prior and made sure that we couldn’t get 2 wickets in quick succession as another partnership was built to frustrate the Surrey attack. However, despite his luck of being picked in the side, de Bruyn helped to build pressure onto the Sussex pair, and removed Yardy LBW for a well made 69.
Prior was looking strong but straight after tea Zafar Ansari had his first Championship wicket of the season when he got the big wicket of the England ‘keeper, and in the very next over Dernbach bowled Ben Brown for 1 to reduce Sussex to 206-6. Ideally, we would have liked to restrict them to less than 250, but a 59 run partnership between Luke Wright and Chris Jordan stopped that before Tremlett had Wright caught by Ponting. The last 3 wickets fell relatively quickly, with Trem also picking up Anyon and Linley bowling Jordan for 41 to finish off the innings.
Rory Burns and Arun Harinath had four overs to survive, and they did that by ending the day on 1-0.
So I think that’s a good day for us all in all, but with this game theoretically a 3-day game, a draw is the most likely result. All the bowlers bowled well today in patches but didn’t really bowl well at the same times, because whenever we seemed to get a wicket, a partnership was then built. In a game like this you perhaps need to roll a side over for less than 200 to force a result, but if you would have asked me at the beginning of the day if I would have taken 295 all out, I probably would have said yes.
With just two days to go we most likely need to bat positively tomorrow, gain a first innings lead and have another go at Sussex at some point on the 4th morning. Draws are no good to us at the moment, so we need to play attackingly and hope that we get that much needed bit of luck which is very much overdue.