FP Trophy final: Sussex v Hampshire, Lord's
LATEST ACTION (all times BST)
e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org (with 'For Sam Lyon' in the subject), text 81111 (with "CRICKET" as the first word) or use 606. (Not all contributions can be used)
So, a cracking day's play at Lord's ends with
Hampshire comfortable FP Trophy winners
- they don't half love it at the home of cricket hey? Dominic Cork
is named the man of the match for his 4-41 and he and the rest of the Hampshire squad look like auditionees for the Alice in Wonderland Cheshire Cat. That's it from me, thanks for your company today - until next time people.
A deserved lap of honour from the Hampshire boys is greeted and appreciated by the Lord's supporters, while Sussex hole out in their dressing room to lick their wounds. A top effort from Michael Yardy and Luke Wright for them today, but not enough of the Sharks put their hands up really. And I wonder if Yardy will wish he had bowled first after winning the toss at his darker moments tonight...
1753 - Hampshire 221-4 bt Sussex 219-9 by six wickets
And there it is. Nic Pothas puts the wheels in motion with a lofted four over midwicket and Chris Benham swipes the winning runs with a well-hit sweep and Hampshire can get their celebrations started. A real team effort today and throughout the competition.
HAMPSHIRE WIN THE FRIENDS PROVIDENT TROPHY 1751 - Hampshire 212-4 (40 overs) - TARGET 220
There's no giving up from Luke Wright, you can be sure of that, and the way he has bowled has been one of the few highlights for Sussex today. He continues to roll in with aggression and pace and he yields just the single from the over - impressive work.
1747 - Hampshire 211-4 (39 overs) - TARGET 220
"Easy! Easy!" is the cry from the Hampshire supporters as Nic Pothas puts serious manners on Rory Hamilton-Brown, tonking the spinner miles over the midwicket boundary for six. The Hampshire dressing room is a sea of smiles as well and I dare say an alcoholic beverage or two will be cracked open in a few minutes' time.
From pompeyboyzinleeds on 606:
"Looks like Hampshire's record of only one defeat in Lord's finals is going to continue. Fine bowling by Corkie and batting from the openers."
1744 - Hampshire 204-4 (38 overs) - TARGET 220
This puppy is cooked folks. Chris Benham laces the returning Luke Wright through the square cover boundary for four and, with the field up, the boundary shots are there to be picked off every delivery. Six off the over and just 16 needed for victory.
1739 - Hampshire 198-4 (37 overs) - TARGET 220
The sun is back out and shining at Lord's - and so is Nic Pothas. The keeper-batsman, playing through the pain, takes on Michael Yardy down the ground and gets it over the infield for four through mid-off, before repeating the shot over mid-on two balls later. Hampshire within touching distance now.
1736 - Hampshire 190-4 (36 overs) - TARGET 220
Confusion reigns at Lord's as Nic Pothas tells the umpires he will be retiring hurt, only for Hampshire skipper Dimitri Mascarenhas to order him to stay out there and play through the pain. Neither captain willing to back down, it would seem. A couple off Yasir Arafat's 10th over - he's gone for 54 runs and Hampshire need 30 from 84 deliveries.
1731 - Hampshire 188-4 (35 overs) - TARGET 220
The atmosphere's frostier than Santa's winter holiday home out there at the moment as Sussex skipper Michael Yardy refuses to allow Nic Pothas a runner on account of the fact the Hampshire batsman came into the match with his groin injury. The sound of a name being crossed off the Christmas card list can be heard from the dressing room. Chris Benham responds by bludgeoning the Sussex skipper out of the ground for a massive six. Note to self - don't upset Hampshire when they only need 30-odd for victory.
1726 - Hampshire 180-4 (34 overs) - TARGET 220
Yasir Arafat is the latest man tasked with picking up a wicket, but he's been wayward all day and nothing changes in his comeback over - a front foot no ball giving Hampshire a free hit and only adding salt to the wound. The only slight glimmer of hope for Hampshire in an otherwise deflating over is the sight of Nic Pothas limping around with a groin injury. He has been rushed back for this game, I believe, but he looks about as fit as Rab C Nesbitt.
1720 - Hampshire 175-4 (33 overs) - TARGET 220
The James Kirtley experiement is given short shrift as Michael Yardy brings himself back on to bowl from the Pavilion End. Big shout when he gets one into Nic Pothas's pads but it hit the keeper-batsman outside the line and it's an otherwise safe enough over for Hampshire. I inadvertantly gave Hampshire back a wicket there for a couple of updates - a cheeky manual refresh and we'll pretend the whole thing was a dream.
1717 - Hampshire 173-4 (32 overs) - TARGET 220
Another close-set field for Luke Wright as Michael Yardy tries to strangle the Hampshire batsmen, but Chris Benham cares not as he bunts the ball through point for four first up. Ed Joyce thinks his ship has come in moments later, but Benham's punt through square cover flies wide of the fielder and he grabs a couple more. 47 from 108 needed.
1712 - Hampshire 162-4 (31 overs) - TARGET 220
All-out attack from Sussex, now, as James Kirtley comes back into the attack. Nic Pothas is about as troubled as a sleeping baby, though, and he gets off the mark with a dreamy cover drive and then doubles his tally with a slap square of the wicket for another boundary. Hampshire need just 58 from 114 balls.
1706 - WICKET! Ervine c Nash b Wright 15, Hampshire 154-4
Sussex skipper Michael Yardy throws the ball back to Luke Wright, who has looked far and away his side's most incisive bowler today, and it bears immediate fruit as the chin music works again, this time doing for Sean Ervine who top-edges to Chris Nash on the boundary edge. Sussex still think they have a sniff here and Wright is the key. Don't go anywhere.
1701 - Hampshire 154-3 (29 overs) - TARGET 220
No close catchers for Michael Yardy despite Sussex's need for wickets, and Chris Benham and Sean Ervine respond by rotating the strike and pinching the singles. Not good enough for the Sharks that.
1658 - Hampshire 149-3 (28 overs) - TARGET 220
Definite ploy this from Yasir Arafat as the seamer tests the middle of the pitch with a series of bouncers - with varying results. Chris Benham pounces on one and tugs it to the boundary rope at a pace, but then gets in a bit of a muddle and is fortunate Sussex don't have a leg slip in as the ball flies off his glove and falls safe. Sussex still need wickets.
1654 - Hampshire 142-3 (27 overs) - TARGET 220
Maiden over for Michael Yardy as the Sussex skipper keeps things nice and tight, Chris Benham happy to get his eye in for the time being.
1651 - Hampshire 142-3 (26 overs) - TARGET 220
Yasir Arafat mars an otherwise fine over with an overpitched delivery last up and Sean Ervine sends it packing to the boundary post haste.
1649 - WICKET! Carberry c & b Arafat 30, Hampshire 137-3
Well, I'm not sure many saw that coming. Michael Carberry, the man who has looked like he has a ball-magnet in the middle of his bat all day, can't get on top of a Yasir Arafat bouncer and he top-edges it onto his helmet, high into the air and into the bowler's hands. The form man is out and Sussex have two new batsmen at the crease. This is their opening.
1646 - Hampshire 137-2 (25 overs) - TARGET 220
Michael Yardy decides he himself is the man to turn things around for Sussex, just as he did with the bat, and he turns his arm over with an accurate over - three singles coming from it. Required rate now just 3.30 an over.
1643 - Hampshire 134-2 (24 overs) - TARGET 220
Luke Wright is the next up to face the Carberry juggernault and the left-hander doesn't disappoint, timing the pants off a couple of leg-side flicks and then spanking a beautiful cover drive to grab nine from the first four deliveries. Sean Ervine then takes up the mantle, getting off the mark with a thick-edged hook away for a six. Double teapot from Wright.
1638 - Hampshire 119-2 (23 overs) - TARGET 220
Yasir Arafat is brought back into the attack, but just when Sussex need some control, he starts bowling absolute pies. Michael Carberry is the beneficiary, flicking a Brian Lara-esque punt over deep midwicket for a one-bounce four, before tickling one off his pads fine for another boundary. He then launches himself into a doozy of a cover drive and Sussex are fortunate Ed Joyce is on the boundary edge to cut it off. Carberry in better touch than the BT Tower.
1633 - WICKET! Lumb c Prior b Wright 32, Hampshire 110-2
Luke Wright has really got his wicker up at the moment and he rips one past Michael Lumb's outside edge as Sussex look to turn one wicket into a few. Lumb responds with a brilliant punch back down the ground for four - but he's gone now! An excellent delivery from Wright goes back up the hill and Lumb offers a thin snick low through to wicket-keeper Matt Prior's grateful palms. Big wicket.
1628 - Hampshire 101-1 (21 overs) - TARGET 220
This game gives with one hand and takes with the other, I tell you. James Adams may have departed, but in comes Michael Carberry - the form man of domestic cricket. He immediately looks at ease at the crease as he carves Chris Nash both sides of the wicket and he takes the Hawks comfortably past 100.
1619 - WICKET! Adams lbw b Wright 55, Hampshire 93-1
And inspiration is what they get! Except it comes not from a bowler or fielder, but umpire Neil Mallinder. Luke Wright is brought back into the attack and he raps James Adams on the pad with one that nips back in a touch, but the ball pitched way outside leg stump and the opener can scarcely believe it when the finger goes up. Harsh.
1617 - Hampshire 93-0 (19 overs) - TARGET 220
Rory Hamilton-Brown continues, and so too do James Adams and Michael Lumb - merrily. Sussex need inspiration from somewhere here.
1612 - Hampshire 88-0 (18 overs) - TARGET 220
As you were, folks. This is more one-sided than a Tyson-Mr Muscle boxing match at the moment. 50 for James Adams.
1609 - Hampshire 85-0 (17 overs) - TARGET 220
It's a double change from Michael Yardy and we'll have spin from both ends, with Rory Hamilton-Brown sharing bowling duties. No alarm at all for James Adams and Michael Lumb, though, and there are more singles on offer out there than a night out in Brannigans.
1605 - Hampshire 79-0 (16 overs) - TARGET 220
With Sussex's powerplay overs done, Michael Yardy throws the ball to part-time spinner Chris Nash. He has five inside the circle and a slip - but James Adams still pinches a three off the first ball and the milking stool remains a firm fixture out in the middle as the singles follow. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
1603 - Hampshire 73-0 (15 overs) - TARGET 220
Sussex continue to leak runs like a teenager after a particularly hot curry, with Michael Lumb dabbing down to fine leg for a four before guiding one down to third man for a three. Hampshire need only 147 from 35 overs now and you have to think if Sussex don't bowl them out, they'll make that easily.
1559 - Hampshire 64-0 (14 overs) - TARGET 220
No need for this Hampshire opening pair to take any risks and they're happy to tick things along in singles at the moment. Sussex skipper Michael Yardy really needs to shake things up out there - his persistence with seam and defensive fields are not putting Hampshire under any pressure at all.
1555 - Hampshire 61-0 (13 overs) - TARGET 220
Drift-along cricket from Sussex, this, and Michael Lumb and James Adams are lapping it up. Sussex were 43-4 at the end of their 13th over.
1550 - Hampshire 58-0 (12 overs) - TARGET 220
Luke Wright comes into the attack as the designated partnership-breaker and he is soon screaming for an lbw decision when he nips one back at Michael Lumb. Unfortunately for him, it pitched outside leg, hit him outside leg stump and was going over the top. Other than that, it was a terrific shout. James Adams and Lumb continue to stroll along and Sussex desperately need a wicket.
1545 - Hampshire 54-0 (11 overs) - TARGET 220
Hampshire take their bowling powerplay immediately - though it seemed like a good opportunity to hold it back and bring on the spinner, maybe? - and Robin Martin-Jenkins continues. Just three singles off the over, but all the threat of a water pistol in the desert.
From A Buss via text on 81111:
"Got a feeling RMJ is going to win this for Sussex - as long as CMJ isn't on the mic when he bowls!"
1541 - Hampshire 51-0 (10 overs) - TARGET 220
James Adams is showing Yasir Arafat no respect at all here and he rocks back on to the back foot and tonks him to the midwicket boundary with a delicious pull shot. Arafat almost exacts the perfect revenge with a terrific yorker, but Adams just about digs it out at the last. That's the first powerplay done and dusted and at this stage Sussex were 38-2. No prizes for guessing who's on top in this one.
1536 - Hampshire 46-0 (9 overs) - TARGET 220
Robin Martin Jenkins comes into the attack but Hampshire's opening pairing are happy to fend him away and rotate the strike before Michael Lumb takes a step and flicks him impudently away for another four. Hampshire looking more comfortable than a pair of the king's slippers.
1532 - Hampshire 39-0 (8 overs) - TARGET 220
Sussex are looking a bit lively in the field and Luke Wright throws down the stumps as Michael Lumb grabs a quick single - but the opener was well home. Plenty of chat out there, but Hampshire still well on top with the ball doing very little. A couple of singles and a punch down the ground for a couple off that over.
1527 - Hampshire 34-0 (7 overs) - TARGET 220
James Adams is going on the attack here, and at times he's living more dangerously than Kate Adie on her summer holidays. Twice the left hander drives uppishly just wide of the mid-off fielder, the ball flying away for four, before the best of the lot through the covers makes it three boundaries in the over. James Kirtley looks like he's been told he has to stay after school to sand the graffiti off the classroom desks.
1522 - Hampshire 22-0 (6 overs) - TARGET 220
Bosh - James Adams leaps on an over-pitched delivery from Yasir Arafat and kerplunks it back down the ground all along the four for a beauty of a boundary. Sussex almost find a breakthrough moments later, though, when, attempting a quick single, Adams and Michael Lumb run into each other, but the former just gets home.
1518 - Hampshire 16-0 (5 overs) - TARGET 220
James Kirtley keeps the batsmen honest with a probing line and length and Hants can manage just a single off that over. Steady Eddie stuff.
1514 - Hampshire 15-0 (4 overs) - TARGET 220
Someone give the ball a quick check, I think the heart has just been brutalised out of it by James Adams, the opener spanking it to the cover boundary with a fierce drive - and only a super stop from Dwayne Smith prevents the next ball heading the same way. Better from the opener.
1510 - Hampshire 10-0 (3 overs) - TARGET 220
It's fair to say there's a distinct lack of fireworks in this innings so far - no swing, no great pace, no great aggression from the batsmen. Three singles off the over and Hampshire in no rush at all.
1506 - Hampshire 7-0 (2 overs) - TARGET 220
Ooh that's a doozy from James Adams, the left-hander pouncing on a bit of width from Yasir Arafat and sending the ball to the square boundary like a rocket. He tries to attempt the same shot next ball, but his waft fails to find the ball and he is lucky not to get an edge on it as it flies through to Matt Prior.
1501 - Hampshire 2-0 (1 over) - TARGET 220
Accurate stuff from Jame Kirtley first up, but with an asking rate of just over four an over, Adams and Lumb are happy to have a look early doors. Not a great deal of swing on show, though, and it's a single apiece to kick things off.
James Kirtley to open the bowling for Sussex, James Adams and Michael Lumb facing up for Hampshire. The run-chase starts in two shakes of a baby's rattle, people.
We're back! A little cloudy over Lord's now, which might help the Sussex seamers, and Michael Yardy's knock has got them right back in the mix. Where's ya money?
1422 - Sussex 219-9 (50 overs)
Chris Tremlett does take the final over and he kicks off with a boundary off James Kirtley's helmet. The tail-ender and Michael Yardy then snatch a two with Kirtley diving into his ground to get safe by a matter of a wombat's whisker, but only singles follow and Sussex settle for a 219 total. Superb rearguard action from Michael Yardy, who finishes unbeaten on 92, and he might just have given his team a sniff here. I'm off to grab some tucker in the BBC canteen so why don't you use this next half hour or so by getting in touch with your tips for the afternoon? Go on, you know you want to...
1415 - Sussex 209-9 (49 overs)
Rolex timing from Michael Yardy as the Sussex skipper somehow squeezes a Dominic Cork yorker away to the boundary rope for four. One over remaining and what Sussex would give for a 225 total.
1411 - WICKET! Martin-Jenkins c Benham b Cork 4, 203-9
More excellence from Dominic Cork, who has been tighter than my brother's wallet today, and RMJ exits the kitchen complaining about the heat. The number 10 aims a swipe at the cover boundary, but he can only spoon the ball up to Chris Benham and Michael Yardy will have to manage the strike now, with James Kirtley bringing what looks like a stick of celery out to bat with.
1408 - Sussex 201-8 (48 overs)
Chris Tremlett - who looks favourite to bowl out his 10 overs now instead of Dimitri Mascarenhas - takes the ball for the 48th over and it's a good 'un, but Michael Yardy squeezes a well aimed yorker away for four down to third man and the 200 comes up for the Hove boys.
"It's bad enough for the nerves just watching, let alone commentating too!"Christopher Martin-Jenkins describing son Robin's innings
1403 - Sussex 194-8 (47 overs)
Robin Martin-Jenkins comes to the crease and he's not a bad bat to come in at 10. He watches on from the non-striker's end, though, as Michael Yardy takes the attack to Dominic Cork, punching him into the covers for a couple and then flaying him square of the wicket for a brutal boundary. This has been an innings just as prescribed by someone in the medical profession from the Sussex skipper.
1356 - WICKET! Arafat c Pothas b Mascarenhas 9, Sussex 186-8
Goddim. Dimitri Mascarenhas brings himself back into the attack and it yields instant success as Yasir Arafat prods at one short of a length outside his off stump and snicks it through to Nic Pothas behind the stumps. Michael Yardy could be left stranded here.
1353 - Sussex 183-7 (45 overs)
A bit better from Sussex as Michael Yardy and Yasir Arafat scamper well between the wickets and Imran Tahir's last over goes for seven. His 10 overs went for 50 and brought two wickets. Solid.
1349 - Sussex 176-7 (44 overs)
Big-hitting Yasir Arafat is pushed up the order as Sussex look to take advantage of the final over of their batting powerplay, but Dominic Cork returns to the attack to keep the batsmen quieter than a mute badger. Just two singles off a cracking Cork over and that powerplay brought about just 18 runs for Sussex. Slower going than a slug with a limp.
1341 - WICKET! Hamilton-Brown c Mascarenhas b Tahir 32, Sussex 171-7
RHB goes! Dimitri Mascarenhas's brave decision to stick with his leg spinner in this batting powerplay pays dividends as Rory Hamilton-Brown attempts to leather Imran Tahir into the next county, top-edges it, and lofts it comfortably into the skipper's hands at midwicket.
1339 - Sussex 169-6 (42 overs)
Fast and straight from Chris Tremlett and this is good bowling from the big man. It almost brings a wicket too as Rory Hamilton-Brown dashes for a single to get off strike - a direct hit from Dominic Cork at mid-on would have been curtains for him, but the Hampshire veteran's shy is off-target and RHB lives to fight another day. Still just dibs and dabs from Sussex, five off that over.
1334 - Sussex 164-6 (41 overs)
Imran Tahir continues, with Dimitri Mascarenhas keen to see what Rory Hamilton-Brown will do against spin, and what he does is take a step and slap him back over his head for four to bring up the 50 partnership. Michael Yardy almost brings up the 14th four of the innings with a cracking punch to the covers moments later, but he succeeds only in stinging the fielder's hands - either side of him and that would have raced to the boundary quicker than a
new and improved McLaren in Hungary.
1331 - Sussex 158-6 (40 overs)
Sussex, rather surprisingly, opt to take their batting powerplay with Michael Yardy and Rory Hamilton-Brown obviously feeling well in, and that prompts the return of Chris Tremlett to the attack. RHB looks to go on the attack, wofting at another remotely short of a length, but only three come off the over with the right-hander almost holing out to deep midwicket with a spliced pull. Close.
1325 - Sussex 155-6 (39 overs)
Shane Warne is having a good ol' gas on the TV about the fact that Hampshire are allowing things to get more comfortable than a Sunday morning lie-in out there, and he's got a point if you ask me. Not that you did, mind. Another four runs off another tame over with the field set back and Michael Yardy and Rory Hamilton-Brown are setting themselves up for a late-innings slap about here.
1322 - Sussex 151-6 (38 overs)
Sussex bring up their 150 as Michael Yardy and Rory Hamilton-Brown continue to milk the singles. Hampshire could do with changing things up a bit here, with Sussex comfortable ambling towards 200-odd.
1320 - Sussex 147-6 (37 overs)
We've hit that period in the innings where you'll be best advised to grab a cup of tea and a sandwich, I reckon. Sussex tick things over with a couple of singles and, erm, not much else happens. Dum de dum.
1317 - Sussex 145-6 (36 overs)
A tidy over but with all the threat of a goldfish in a sandpit from Liam Dawson, four singles from it, and Sussex will just be looking to bat the overs here.
1311 - Sussex 141-6 (35 overs)
That's the skipper's 50 and my word how Sussex needed that. A typically belligerent innings from Michael Yardy, coming off 76 balls and including just four fours. Sussex need him to go all the way, with 200 surely a minimum on this pitch. Three singles and a top-edged boundary over the keeper's head from Rory Hamilton-Brown off Sean Ervine's return over.
1307 - Sussex 134-6 (34 overs)
RHB is a lucky man to still be out there as he scrambles back to his ground after deciding against a run, only for Liam Dawson to miss the run out attempt by swiping at the stumps - only with the ball in the wrong hand. Oopsa-daisy. Three off the over.
1304 - Sussex 131-6 (33 overs)
Imran Tahir, who looks a bit like Mr Tickle in a blender when he bowls, throws down another decent over, Rory Hamilton-Brown grabbing a couple on the sweep but otherwise not much threat from batsman or bowler.
1301 - Sussex 128-6 (32 overs)
Another good contest developing here, as Rory Hamilton-Brown reacts to having to duck under a well-aimed bouncer from Chris Tremlett by crunching a beauty on the up through the covers for four. RHB is far and away the most talented bespectacled man playing in this match, according to a colleague. Not the bravest of shouts, given he's the only bespectacled man playing in this match, but still.
1257 - Sussex 121-6 (31 overs)
Hampshire crawling over Sussex like a night out at an arachnid convention here, Imran Tahir conceding just a couple of singles off a decent but tame over.
1255 - Sussex 119-6 (30 overs)
That's how you get off the mark, folks, Rory Hamilton-Brown dancing down the wicket to Liam Dawson and leathering him over the covers and away for four. Another Sussex batsman who has opted for aggression over defence by the look of things.
1253 - Sussex 112-6 (29 overs)
Oh that's a big, big shout. Imran Tahir yelps imploringly at Neil Mallinder as he raps Rory Hamilton-Brown on the pads, but it's just outside the off stump and it's given not out. Close. And good news for Hampshire fans as Sean Ervine dashes back on to the field, apparently hardly feeling the effects of trying to dive through a wall. Good lad.
1250 - WICKET! Smith c Carberry b Tahir 20, Sussex 111-6
Nelson strikes! A tame Imran Tahir delivery lures Dwayne Smith into an ill-advised and poorly-executed swipe and he can only lob safely into the hands of Michael Carberry jogging in from deep midwicket. A dismissal softer than your puppy's favourite toilet paper, that, but the West Indian was always going to hit out or get out.
1247 - Sussex 110-5 (28 overs)
Liam Dawson is the man to replace Sean Ervine at the Pavilion End with his little tweakers and he does well, getting a bit of turn and bounce to restrict this pair to just three from the over.
1245 - Sussex 107-5 (27 overs)
Ouch, that has to hurt. Sean Ervine attempts to chase down a lovely Dwayne Smith reverse-sweep for four and rattles into the Lord's boundary wall knee first. A lot of treatment needed, he goes off the pitch, and Dimitri Mascarenhas will have to find some overs from somewhere now.
From Paul in Lancs via email
"Excuse my relative ingnorance on the woblinness of jelly aboard rollercoasters, but isn't it just possible that the properties of jelly actually make it a more stable substance for such activity than other apparently firmer puddings? Just as earthquake resistant buidlings now tend to have shock absorbant viscous 'dampers' built into the design, so jelly of the correct consistency may in fact be ideally suited to withstand both the centrifugal and centripetal forces associated with rollercoaster excursions."
1240 - Sussex 100-5 (26 overs)
This should be an interesting half hour or so here, with Dwayne Smith wielding his bat like a Jedi knight swishing a lightsabre. He carves Chris Tremlett away for another boundary, before the big right-armer gets one to nip off the pitch and rap him on the pads. It was outside off and too high, but things will happen one way or the other in the coming minutes and, possibly, hours.
1234 - Sussex 94-5 (25 overs)
Where did that come from? Moments after Sean Ervine gets one to zip through off the surface past Dwayne Smith's bat, the West Indian shimmies down the wicket and laces him over midwicket for the first six of the innings. Ervine looks like someone has rubbed marmite on his top lip and Sussex move on to 94-5 halfway through the overs.
1229 - Sussex 84-5 (24 overs)
What a shirt that is. Kevin Pietersen, recuperating from this week's Achilles operation, is absolutely dominating a striped shirt number in the crowd that boasts three - yes three - button holes on the collar. Oh, the trappings of fame. He'll be sitting pretty at the moment, though, watching his Hampshire side suffocate Sussex, Chris Tremlett yielding just three runs off another lovely over.
1226 - Sussex 81-5 (23 overs)
If that shot from Dwayne Smith is anything to go by - no he doesn't know control, attempting to heave the second ball of the over into next week and only just avoiding Dominic Cork's lame leap at slip to grab a couple. Sean Ervine almost gets through the West Indian's defence next ball but he just gets enough bat on it to sneak it away for a single. Sussex limping along like a snail on crutches.
1219 - WICKET! Wright b Tremlett 7, Sussex 77-5
To all Sussex fans out there, I can only apologise. The commentator's curse strikes again as Luke Wright plays a rare aggressive shot and succeeds only in inside-edging onto his own stumps, via his pad, off Chris Tremlett. Tremlett really has his tail up here, to be fair, bowling over 90mph at a good length and line. Dwayne Smith is next in - does he know control?
1216 - Sussex 76-4 (21 overs)
Bit of width from Sean Ervine and Michael Yardy flays a boundary through the gully region for four. Eight off the over and you can't help but feel Hampshire have taken their foot off the throat a touch.
1212 - Sussex 68-4 (20 overs)
Another very good over from Chris Tremlett, the one-time "next big thing in English cricket" yielding just a couple off Michael Yardy's hips.
1209 - Sussex 66-4 (19 overs)
Sean Ervine comes into the attack after Imran Tahir's last over went for 10 and it's decent enough stuff - a couple of singles and an outside edge that falls a few feet short of Dominic Cork at first slip off Michael Yardy. Sussex still looking wobblier than jelly on a rollercoaster.
1205 - Sussex 64-4 (18 overs)
Chris Tremlett comes into the attack and he finds good line and pace straight away, restricting Luke Wright and Michael Yardy to a single apiece. Run rate is just above 3.5 an over, with a projected score of 178. Sussex will need a lot more than that.
From IlCucchiaio on 606:
"This is almost identical to a similar final between Worcs and Gloucs a few years ago - the first hour of the morning at Lords is crucial for the batting team. Lose early wickets and it's a long uphill struggle to get back.
1158 - Sussex 62-4 (17 overs)
Michael Yardy decides attack is the best form of defence as he picks off two wayward Imran Tahir deliveries for a couple of fours through the off side. Not a great over from the Punjabi spinner and Sussex's rebuilding job continues. Drinks. Which has given me the chance to correct my post about Dominic Cork below - as GP
points out via email he did of course take his hat-trick at Old Trafford, with his man-of-the-match Lord's display in 1995 coming on the back of his 7-43. He still loves it here, mind - perhaps it's the lunches.
1154 - Sussex 52-4 (16 overs)
Dimitri Mascarenhas continues and Luke Wright is more reserved than the top table at Buckingham Palace as he paddles away limply at a full toss. Michael Yardy makes no mistake with a bit of width, though, and he lashes a half volley away for a sumptuous four. Only about 30 or 40 more of those needed, I'd say.
Shaul Udal on BBC Five Live sports extra:
"It was only Duncan Fletcher from the Hampshire camp who was thinking bowl first this morning. Everyone else was thinking bat, bat, bat apart from the old fox."
1150 - Sussex 46-4 (15 overs)
Imran Tahir will turn his arm over now and he could barely ask for a better situation to come on in. A single apiece off that over.
1145 - Sussex 44-4 (14 overs)
A single off another accurate Dimitri Mascarenhas over and Sussex really have to dig in and reassess here. Luke Wright is in now and he loves a big hit - he may have to hold himself back here, though.
From unluckyeddie on 606:
"Absolutely brilliant bowling by Corky - turning the clock back. God, I wish this guy still played for Derbyshire. Now in the twilight of his career, he is still a man for the big occasion, one more day in the limelight. Hero."
1142 - WICKET! Goodwin run out 1, Sussex 43-4
Holy mid-off fielding batman! Murray Goodwin, so often the lynchpin of this Sussex batting line-up, takes on the arm of Chris Tremlett with a quick single attempt but he ends up with sauce on his face back in the hutch as the big man takes out the stumps with a brilliant direct hit. The TV umpire rules Goodwin was short of his ground by a matter of a gnat's hair and Hampshire are cock-a-hoop.
1140 - Sussex 43-3 (13 overs)
A maiden from Dominic Cork, who really is rolling back the years here. It was at Lord's that he got 7-43 against the West Indies circa 1995 and I think it's safe to say he loves it here.
1135 - Sussex 43-3 (12 overs)
Hampshire are firing on all cylinders at the moment and if any more proof were needed, Liam Dawson provides a display of acrobatics rarely seen outside of Cirque du Soleil in saving a Michael Yardy guide through gully going for four. It might only have saved a run, but Sussex will be feeling the pressure.
1129 - WICKET! Nash lbw Cork 21, Sussex 39-3
GONE! Dominic Cork is using all his nous on this Lord's pitch to cause the Sussex batsmen all sorts of problems. Chris Nash is the latest to go as one raps him on the pads in line with off stump - hawkeye says it was going millimetres over the top, but you have to give those, I'd say. Sussex in a whole heap of trouble. Michael Yardy - your county needs you.
1125 - Sussex 38-2 (10 overs)
A couple more off Chris Nash's outside edge, and Murray Goodwin is yet to get off the mark. The bowling powerplay will be taken here, I bet my life savings (£2.90) on it.
1118 - Sussex 36-2 (9 overs)
Chris Nash tickles one off his hips for four but Sussex are rattled here, no doubt. Apparently Matt Prior has played only a couple of times in this competition for Sussex - and they've lost them both. Who believes in omens?
From S C Hart via email:
"Just thought I'd even up the 'fan' quota on here (re: PFC True Blue) and prove that not all of Sussex is still asleep! Come on the Sharks!"
1118 - Sussex 31-2 (8 overs)
Cracking over from Dominic Cork, that, and he's now got more chat than Jonathan Ross in the outfield. Murray Goodwin, you feel, is the key man for Sussex - and the Zimbabwean, in his benefit year for Sussex, could hardly pick a bigger stage to make his mark than here and now. A single off Dimitri Mascarenhas's over and this pitch all of a sudden looks like a minefield.
1111 - WICKET! Prior c Pothas b Cork, Sussex 30-2
Cork is more pumped up than your average competitive body-builer and England's Ashes star Matt Prior strides in. This could be fireworks. And it is! Dominic Cork pings the first into Prior's pads - it's too high - but he gets the next one to go with the hill, holding its line, and Prior feathers the slimmest of edges through to the keeper. Bang, bang for Hampshire and they're in control.
1108 - WICKET! Joyce b Cork 15, Sussex 30-1
Shot of the morning from Ed Joyce as he tears a layer off the cherry with the most textbook of textbook cover drives for four - but he's gone now! Big wicket for Sussex, that, as Joyce goes to play then goes to leave - and succeeds only in inside-edging it onto the stumps.
1105 - Sussex 25-0 (6 overs)
A couple of singles and you already get the feeling Hampshire are settling themselves in for a big run chase here. Hold on, that's the third time I've said that isn't it? I am not deliberately jinxing this match, I promise.
1102 - Sussex 23-0 (5 overs)
Ed Joyce, when in form, makes this game look easier than a one-letter wordsearch and he gets Dominic Cork all pantomime-exasperated when he tucks the veteran away off his legs for four. Solid start, this, by Sussex.
1059 - Sussex 17-0 (4 overs)
Inside-edges away for four are the order of the day at the moment, with Ed Joyce the latest beneficiary. Another good over from Dimitri Mascarenhas.
1056 - Sussex 13-0 (3 overs)
I know it's not like him, but Dominic Cork is giving it a bit of chat out there. The pitch is already looking a little bit up-and-down and Cork has no hesitation at all in pointing that fact out to Chris Nash in the most polite of manners. A maiden over, with the right-hander beat outside his off stump on more than one occasion. The batsmen need to settle down, here.
1051 - Sussex 13-0 (2 overs)
This used Lord's pitch is a bit slow, a bit low, and it's perfect for Dimi Mascarenhas's medium-pacers. His earrings make may him look like a cast-off from a Pirates of the Caribbean spin-off, but his accuracy is flawless as he beats Chris Nash's bat outside off twice in a tight over. The opener inside-edges the streakiest of boundaries away for four but that's a good start from Dimi.
1047- Sussex 7-0 (1 over)
Aggression from Cork early doors, but it's wayward and after England recall-wannabe Ed Joyce pinches a few off his legs, Chris Nash flays the first boundary of the day through the covers. Like I said before - run-fest.
The bell rings, Joyce and Nash stride to the crease, and everyone's favourite cricket mouth Dominic Cork will open the bowling. Let's get started, peeps!
Now then, just when you thought this summer of cricket was all about the Ashes, along comes this massive domestic trophy. Ed Joyce and Chris Nash will open up for Sussex - so why don't you kick off your day by emailing
, texting via 81111
, or getting involved on 606
and let me make you web famous for 15 minutes. Give yourselves something to tell the grandchildren.
M J Lumb, J H K Adams, M A Carberry, S M Ervine, C C Benham, L A Dawson, N Pothas (Wkt), A D Mascarenhas (capt), D G Cork, C T Tremlett, Imran Tahir.Sussex:
E C Joyce, C D Nash, M J Prior (Wkt), L J Wright, M W Goodwin, D R Smith, R J Hamilton-Brown, M H Yardy (Capt), Yasir Arafat, R S C Martin-Jenkins, R J Kirtley.Umpires:
N J Llong and N A Mallender
So, Hampshire skipper Dimitri Mascarenhas calls incorrectly and Sussex counterpart Michael Yardy opts to bat first on what looks a good surface at the home of cricket. England wicket-keeper Matt Prior, in good form with the bat, will bat at three for Sussex, with talented all-rounder Luke Wright dropping down to five, we think, while Hampshire will be relying on the likes of Dimi and Michael Carberry to chase down whatever Sussex set them. I'm tipping a run-fest.
SUSSEX WIN THE TOSS AND WILL BAT FIRST
It's Lord's, the sun is shining, and while
Sid the Shark may not be there,
a bumper crowd is expected to turn out for a day of fours, sixes, wickets and alcohol. Hampshire v Sussex, the FP Trophy final, we love it. Are you ready?