Robinson runs through Hampshire order to secure Sussex victory - report and reaction
Ollie Robinson took five wickets, including three in 14 balls, as Sussex beat Hampshire by 94 runs in their Bob Willis Trophy south group opener at Hove.
Robinson picked up Joe Weatherley, Felix Organ and Sam Northeast before lunch and claimed Harry Came as his fourth victim early into the afternoon session. He then returned after tea to remove last man Ajeet Singh to finish with 5 for 29 from 13.3 impressive overs.
Hampshire lost wickets steadily in their pursuit of a victory target of 245 and were dismissed for 146.
Sussex captain Ben Brown said: "I'm delighted. I thought we played better cricket throughout and we had some really good individual performances.
"Ollie Robinson's performance is the sort we have come to expect from him. He is in a really good rhythm and that spell of three wickets before lunch today made such a difference. Phil Salt batted really well in both innings too.
"He was in good form for England with that hundred in the warm-up game against Ireland. He's an attacking player but I don't think people realise what a good defensive technique he has, which you need to have if you are opening the batting in England.
"Our youngsters did well too. Jack Carson bowled without fear and deserved his five wickets and he and Henry Crocombe handled the occasion really well. There are things we need to work on. Our batting looked a bit rusty but overall it was a very positive few days for us."
Robinson, 26, finished with match figures of nine for 56 and once again showed the form which brought him 137 Championship wickets in the last two seasons and a place in England’s training squad for the recent Test series against West Indies.
He removed both Hampshire openers in near identical fashion, driving without much foot movement and edging to third slip. George Garton held on at the second attempt to remove Joe Weatherley (2) before taking a low catch offered by Organ for nine.
Robinson struck again in his fourth over when Northeast (7), attempting a checked drive, got an inside edge and lost his leg stump and Hampshire had slumped to 38 for four just after lunch when Came was defeated by Robinson’s extra bounce off a good length and edged to Phil Salt at slip for six. After his new-ball spell Robinson had figures of four for 15 from eight overs.
Although Robinson was a handful throughout, there was some poor shot selection by the Hampshire batsmen with no one in either of their innings going past 30.
After Robinson had wrecked their top order, debutant off-spinner Jack Carson picked up three wickets as Hampshire’s batsmen continued to show a lack of discipline having seemingly got themselves established.
Ian Holland (13) was bowled sweeping as for the second time in the match Carson took a wicket with his second ball before left-hander Tom Alsop, who looked as comfortable as anyone, came down the track and was beaten in the flight, bowled for 27.
Lewis McManus was another who got out when seemingly well set, caught off a top-edged pull for 28 the ball after he pulled George Garton over mid-wicket for a flat six.
Then James Fuller horribly mis-timed a pull at a short ball from slow left-armer Delray Rawlins which he should have blasted out of the ground and instead gave a catch to Henry Crocombe at wide long-on.
Hampshire were 135 for eight at tea and their resistance lasted for only another 15 minutes after the interval. Mason Crane endured a 14-ball duck, caught off a mis-timed sweep to give Carson his fifth wicket of the match.
Fittingly, though, it was left to Robinson – the best bowler on show by some margin – to wrap things up when he had last man Ajeet Dale caught behind for a duck to claim the 14th five-wicket haul of his first-class career. Keith Barker, who struck some futile blows towards the end, finished unbeaten on 25.
Earlier, Sussex had added 66 runs to their overnight 155 for six before they were dismissed for 221 in their second innings.
Barker made the breakthrough in the second over of the day when Rawlins (11) was caught behind to give the former Warwickshire left-armer his 400th first-class wicket. Off-spinner Organ and leg-spinner Crane combined to finish off the innings.
Robinson made a rapid 23 before trying to sweep Organ out of the rough and giving a catch to Holland, running back from slip.
Garton (13) was leg before when he missed a sweep off Crane, who finished off the innings when Mitch Claydon (16) slogged across the line after adding 22 runs for the last wicket with Crocombe (10 not out).
Hove: Sussex 176 & 221, Hampshire 153 & 150; Sussex won by 94 runs.