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Sussex openers dig in after bowlers dismiss Lancashire on day three

Lancashire’s bowlers will need to take ten wickets relatively cheaply on the final day at Emirates Old Trafford if they are to guide their side to victory in their opening LV= Insurance County Championship match against Sussex.

Only 42.3 overs were possible on Saturday and in the first half of that allotment the home side were dismissed for 407, giving them a first-innings lead of 106. Skipper Dane Vilas top-scored with 189.  

However, openers Aaron Thomason and Tom Haines then resisted the Lancashire attack for 21 overs and Sussex were 38 without loss when bad light, sleet and rain ended play early on a bleak evening.  That leaves the visitors with a deficit of 68 runs going into the final sessions of the game.      

In the first 90 minutes of play Lancashire added 68 runs for the loss of their last five wickets with skipper Vilas being last out for 189, caught at deep point by Aaron Thomason off Jack Carson to give the Ulsterman his second Championship wicket.  

However, the day will be even more memorable for Sean Hunt, who trapped both Luke Wood and Danny Lamb leg before wicket and thus finished with three for 47 from his 21 overs.

A brace of mix-ups resulted in the run outs of Tom Bailey and Tom Hartley but by then Lancashire had collected a full haul of five batting points. England prospect Ollie Robinson finished with two for 69 from 23 overs and Carson two for 106 from 24.4. 

Needing to bat for at least a day in order to avoid defeat, Sussex suffered no setbacks in reducing the deficit to 84 before tea and the openers maintained that resolute approach in the short session that the weather allowed on the resumption.      

Speaking to Adrian Harms following the day's play, head coach Ian Salisbury said: "I'm really proud of the boys today, it was a great fightback. 

"We were put under the pump a little bit yesterday but I thought they were magnificent today. 

"When they were 30-odd ahead, five down, they were probably looking to get 450 plus, but to keep them down to what we did - we're really happy. 

"All we've talked about is what we need to do to win the game, we're not thinking any other way other than winning. Unfortunately, we had a great opportunity to get ahead tonight and start putting them under pressure tomorrow but the rain arrived."

Ian also spoke about Sean Hunt's impressive start to life in professional cricket, our opening batsmen and where the game goes from here. Listen to the full interview here:

Watch day four live from 11am on the Sussex Cricket Match Centre

Watch highlights of day three here: 


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