It's win or bust in the T20 for Sussex

David Wiese could be crucial to Sussex's hopes against Essex / Picture by Phil Westlake
David Wiese could be crucial to Sussex's hopes against Essex / Picture by Phil Westlake

Sussex are 'buzzing' as they bid for T20 quarter-final qualification with a final group game againat Essex at Hove on Friday night.

The Sharks take on the Eagles at the 1st Central County Ground (7pm start) knowing it's win or bust.

They have named a 13-man squad for the fixture. After returning home yesterday for family reasons, skipper and overseas player Ross Taylor is unavailable.

Sussex’s club captain, Ben Brown, will take charge of the team on Friday. Tymal Mills misses out with a hamstring injury.

Squad: Ben Brown (captain), Jofra Archer, Will Beer, Danny Briggs, Laurie Evans, George Garton, Chris Jordan, Chris Nash, Ollie Robinson, Phil Salt, Stiaan van Zyl, David Wiese, Luke Wright.

After 13 games, the Sharks are fourth in the South Group but must win against Essex to be in with a chance of qualifying for the quarter-finals.

Sussex are tied on 12 points with five other counties ahead of a couple of rivals playing on Thursday night, but, of those, only Middlesex in third have a superior net run rate. This method is used to separate sides level on points.

Assuming they win on Friday, Sussex are well-placed to progress to the knock-out stages, therefore, but won’t know their fate for sure until each team’s final net run rate has been calculated.

There are two matches being played in the South Group on Thursday evening, with the remaining four all starting at 7pm on Friday.

Head coach Mark Davis said: “It’s all come down to the last games to determine who goes into the quarter finals, and this makes Friday an exciting fixture against Essex. The team is looking forward to the challenge and can’t wait to play in front of our home supporters. We have a number of players in fine form and are confident of getting a win on Friday.”

Speaking earlier in the week, the top run-scorer in the South group, Nash described the mood among the Sharks squad: “We’re buzzing. You want to be in the business end, qualifying for the quarter-finals, pushing for things like this. To be knowing that we’re playing on Friday and that if we can win that gives us a really good chance of going through to the quarter finals is exciting.”

Nash emphasised how important the home crowd will be: “When you look around the ground and it’s full it gets the players up for it. It makes a huge difference. It’ll be great to have as many down as possible. If we can get a capacity crowd on a Friday night against local rivals, that’d be great.”