Sussex are the 2017 2nd XI T20 champions after beating Hampshire by 24 runs in the final at Arundel.
Batting first, Sussex posted a highly competitive 171-6 in their 20 overs. Luke Wells got the innings off to a flyer, with Harry Finch and Delray Rawlins maintaining momentum after that.
A fine bowling performance prevented any of the Hampshire batsmen from truly establishing themselves as wickets fell regularly and the run rate quickly grew.
Abi Sakande’s three wickets included those of the experienced Jimmy Adams and Ian Holland in consecutive deliveries, while Adam Barton bowled brilliantly in conceding just nine runs from his three-and-a-half overs. It was Barton who took the final wicket as Jonty Jenner and Rawlins combined to pull off a stunning relay catch on the boundary and cap off a fielding performance of the highest order.
Earlier in the day, Sussex beat Lancashire in the semi-final. Restricting their opponents to 149-5, Sussex reached the target with four balls to spare thanks largely to a sublime 90 not out from 57 balls by Angus Robson.
Success on Finals Day for Sussex was the culmination of a T20 season in which they won ten of their 14 games, losing just three and tying the other.
Sussex coach Jason Swift said: ““It was extremely satisfying to see the team perform the way they did at Arundel. To reproduce the way they’d played all season in a Finals Day in front of a decent-sized crowd showed tremendous maturity for a young side.
“The boys came up against some very experienced professionals in the final and showed what a talented group they are. The team played brilliantly as a whole, but a special mention for Angus Robson for his 90 in the semi-final, as well as Luke Wells who got us off to a flyer in the final and Harry [Finch] and Delray [Rawlins] who then kept the momentum going.
“The bowlers never let Hampshire get on top. Adam Barton’s spell was phenomenal and Abi [Sakande] had a huge influence on the match with his two wickets in two balls to get rid of Adams and Holland.”
Keith Greenfield, Sussex’s director of cricket, added: “It’s always nice when you win a 2nd XI competition with a team that is made up predominantly of home-grown talent of the right age who are hungry to improve. Congratulations to Jason and the team for an outstanding campaign.”