Warwickshire 310 for 6 (Yates 114, Rhodes 76 ) beat Sussex 306 for 7 (Pujara 107, Orr 81) by four runs
An accomplished century from Rob Yates lifted Warwickshire to a thrilling four-run Royal London Cup win over Sussex at Edgbaston.
The victory extended the Bears’ unbeaten start to the group campaign while leaving Sussex with a second defeat to go with their two wins.
Warwickshire were lifted to a meaty 314 for six by Yates’ second List A ton, 114 from 111 balls, supported by aggressive knocks from Will Rhodes (76, 70) and Michael Burgess (58, 51). Bradley Currie led Sussex’s bowling with two for 51 while Aristides Karvelas picked up two late wickets to end with two for 44.
Sussex’s gallant reply fell short on 306 for seven despite Cheteshwar Pujara’s classy century (107, 79) and Ali Orr’s 81 (102) as Krunal Pandya took three for 51, George Garrett two for 50 and Olly Hannon-Dalby two for 55.
After choosing to bat, Warwickshire were given a sound platform with an opening stand of 69 in 15 overs between Yates and Hamza Shaikh. Sixteen-year-old Bears product Shaikh looked comfortable on his debut before he was run out when Yates called for a very sharp single.
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Rhodes raced to a 53-ball half-century against a Sussex attack that stuck to their task well in perfect batting conditions and intense heat. With Yates anchoring the innings skilfully, the second wicket added 131 in 19 overs before Rhodes, having just scooped Henry Crocombe for six, ladled the next ball to deep square leg.
At 235 for two from 39 overs, Warwickshire were well-placed to go huge but a brake was applied by an excellent over from Currie. He dislodged Yates with one that nipped away to take the edge and, two balls later, dismissed Pandya for a duck in similar fashion.
Burgess smote three fours and three sixes vigorous to ensure that his former team would have to chase over 300: a substantial target but about par in the conditions.
Sussex’s reply was briskly launched by their young top order. Orr advanced to a 67-ball half-century supported by perky cameos from Harrison Ward (24, 36) and Clark (30, 43) before both chipped catches up to the infield.
Orr was closing in on his second List A century when he pulled Pandya to deep square leg. When Tom Alsop chipped Garrett to mid-wicket, Sussex were leaning heavily on Pujara as they started the last ten overs needing 102.
Delray Rawlings slog-swept Pandya to deep square and Danial Ibrahim sliced Garrett to backward point but Pujara raced from 50 to 100 in just 22 balls, taking 22 off a Liam Norwell over, to keep Sussex in the game.
They needed 20 from the last two overs but, from the first of those 12 balls, Pujara was yorked by Hannon-Halby. A composed last over from Garrett concluded with Karvelas needing to hit the final ball for six – he managed just a single to resounding cheers from a big crowd which had richly enjoyed a fine match.