Thursday, May 4th, 2023


Adam Hose, Matthew Waite and Joe Leach struck half-centuries to mastermind a splendid Worcestershire recovery on the opening day of the LV=Insurance County Championship match with Sussex at New Road.

A fine opening spell by England’s Ollie Robinson was primarily responsible for Worcestershire encountering a challenging start to their innings after being put into bat.

But Hose, with his maiden fifty for Worcestershire on his home debut, and Gareth Roderick masterminded the opening phase of a fightback during a partnership of 92 for the sixth wicket.

Then Waite and Leach established a new eighth wicket record for Worcestershire in matches against Sussex by putting on 103.

It surpassed the 89 stand by Ted Arnold and William Burns at Eastbourne in 1909 and helped lift the final total to 264 all out.

Josh Tongue then struck with the ball, dismissing Tom Clark as Sussex closed on 63-1 from 20 overs.

Worcestershire were put into bat, and Ed Pollock drove at a delivery in Robinson’s first over and edged a shoulder-high catch to third slip.

Azhar Ali had a fine battle with the England bowler and collected boundaries from a late cut and backfoot cover drive before he was lbw with a ball which nipped back.

In the same over Jack Haynes was undone by a delivery which nibbled away and was caught at first slip.

Jake Libby took advantage of the shorter boundary on the pavilion side of the ground by flicking Sean Hunt off his legs for six.

He became Robinson’s fourth scalp when losing his middle stump to a ball slanted into the opener.

Club Captain Brett D’Oliveira nicked a fine ball of extra bounce from Fynn Hudson-Prentice to third slip.

Hose and fit again keeper-batter Roderick, who had missed the drawn game against Gloucestershire with a thumb injury, launched a successful counter-attack.

Hose produced a series of impressive drives and flicks off his legs and punished Sean Hunt for three successive boundaries.

He received warm applause after completing a 67-ball half century with eight fours and was given good support by Roderick during a partnership of 92 in 22 overs.

The stand was broken, and there was little Roderick could do about a peach of a ball from Hunt, which bounced and moved away with keeper Oli Carter accepting the chance.

Hose’s fine knock ended when he was bowled by a fine yorker from Henry Crocombe, but there was further excellent resistance from Matthew Waite and Joe Leach.

Waite looked full of confidence after scoring his maiden first class century against Derbyshire at the Incora County Ground.

A 40-ball half-century included three sixes, and Leach was also in typically pugnacious form in completing fifty from 45 deliveries, and the 100 partnership spanned just 13.4 overs.

But Robinson’s return wrapped up proceedings in bowling Waite, having Leach taken by Smith at second slip and trapping Ben Gibbon lbw.

When Sussex batted, Tongue came on first change, and in his second over, Clark went for a drive and was caught behind.