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Page last updated at 13:40 GMT, Friday, 19 June 2009 14:40 UK

Willoughby bowls Somerset to win

Somerset 367 and 178 beat Sussex 197 and 313 by 35 runs (Somerset 21pts, Sussex 3pts)

Charl Willoughby
Charl Willoughby took the last three Sussex wickets to wrap up victory

Charl Willoughby took 4-80 as Somerset secured victory over Sussex by 35 runs just after lunch on the final day.

Sussex resumed on 169-4, needing 180 more to win, and looked on course while Chris Nash was still there.

But, having improved his career-best to 134, Nash was one of five quick wickets as Sussex slumped to 270-9.

Piyush Chawla (27no) helped add 43 for the last wicket before Robin Martin-Jenkins was caught in the gully for 27 off Willoughby to seal Somerset's win.

It was Somerset's second successive Championship victory following last Sunday's four-wicket win over Yorkshire at Headingley.

Coming on top of their better part of rain-affected draw against Lancashire at Old Trafford and a Twenty20 win at Northampton, it completes a very successful 17 days on the road.

Yet the home side had looked capable of winning themselves earlier in the day when Nash and nightwatchman Jason Lewry frustrated Somerset with a 60-run fifth-wicket stand.

Lewry passed 20 for only the fifth time in the last four years, making 25 with four boundaries. But, with the target down to 131 to win, he was bowled off a bottom edge by David Stiff.

That was the breakthrough Somerset needed and they took five wickets for 52 runs in 17 overs before lunch to put themselves back in the driving seat.

Nash, showing the necessary patience and application on a slow pitch as he converted his overnight 111 into comfortably the best of his career, added three more boundaries before being caught behind off Alfonso Thomas.

3 June (New Road, T20) . . . Somerset lost to Worcs by 8 runs
4 June (Wantage Road, T20) . . . Somerset bt Northants by 30 runs
6-9 June (Old Trafford, CC) . . . Somerset drew with Lancashire
11-14 June (Headingley, CC) . . . Somerset bt Yorks by four wkts
16-19 June (Hove, CC) . . . Somerset beat Sussex by 35 runs

Andrew Hodd soon followed, leg before, offering no shot to give Thomas his eighth wicket of the match.

And Luke Wright wasted a solid start with an airy drive to backward point where Arul Suppiah took a superb catch.

They were given hope by Dwayne Smith, who went on the offensive, hitting two boundaries and driving Willoughby over mid-on for six. But, in the last over before lunch he was trapped in front by the South African trying to work the ball through midwicket.

Sussex still had hope as they bat all the way down to number 11, Chawla having hit his maiden first-class hundred in the 10-wicket crushing of Worcestershire earlier in the week.

Together with Martin-Jenkins, the Indian leg-spinner attacked the new ball after lunch to give their side renewed hope.

Martin-Jenkins cracked successive deliveries from Willoughby to the cover boundary.

But the South African got his revenge in his next over, as Marcus Trescothick took the winning catch in the gully. And that further extended Sussex's wait for a Championship win at Hove.

They have not won at home since beating Worcestershire in September 2007 to complete their third Championship win in five years.

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see also
Chawla and Nash give Sussex hope
18 Jun 09 |  Counties
Thomas burst puts Somerset on top
17 Jun 09 |  Counties
Trescothick defies Chawla's haul
16 Jun 09 |  Counties

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