Two days after the Surrey match Sussex were played at Hove. There was a complete contrast in every way. The day was warm and sunny, after a dull day between the matches, and Ireland put up a good show. Rea came in for Rao and Patterson got his first cap at Cooke's expense. Memories went back to 1985 for Warke and Lewis. They were on an Irish team bowled out for 39 at Hove in a Nat West match. Alan Wells, now captain of Sussex, was the only survivor on his team. Sussex had Athey, who kept wicket, Salisbury and Jarvis, who had all played for England, Alan Wells who had captained two England "A" team tours and was capped against West Indies later in the summer.
Ireland won the toss again but this time put Sussex in. The start was a disaster. After five overs Sussex were 35 and 10 wides had been bowled, all by Butler and four of them in one over. The 10th over, by Patterson, was a maiden but by now the wides had gone up to 14 and the score was 49 without loss. Then Graham and Harrison stemmed the tide. They both bowled very well and bowled out their 11 over stints. Graham conceded 44 runs, of which 13 were in his last two overs. Harrison, in his 11 overs, took two wickets. His 11 overs yielded only 34 runs. In the 20th over Athey was lbw to Harrison. 84-1-42. Warke missed Hall, 30, at slip off Graham at 94, a sharp chance. In the next over, the 30th, Greenfield was caught by Curry at long-on. 120-2-21.
Hoey replaced Graham and in his fourth over Wells was lbw to one which kept low. 146-3-15. Lenham joined Hall and at lunch, taken after 38 overs, the score was 153-3, Hall 44, Lenham 6. By now 16 wides had been bowled. Butler came back after lunch and Hoey changed ends. Hall went to 50 but was out for 59 with the score on 174 in the 43rd over. He was caught off a skier to deep cover. Butler took another wicket in the 45th over when Stevenson was caught off a high mishit to third man. 185-5. At the end of over 45 Sussex were 189 but the last 10 overs yielded 72, mostly to Lenham who marshalled the tail very well.
Butler took another wicket in over 47 when Remy got a leading edge which was caught by Lewis at mid-off. 208-6. Patterson came back for Hoey and he took two wickets. At 214 Salisbury was caught, a sharp chance, by Rea at short mid-wicket, this in the 50th over. Ireland were hoping to be able to finish off Sussex for somewhere between 220 and 230 but it was not to be. Jarvis fell at 229 at the end of the 52nd over when Benson caught another skier. No more wickets fell but 32 runs came in the last three overs, 18 of them off two overs bowled by Hoey. 261-8 was the final count, 49 of them by Lenham off only 43 balls with six fours. In all 20 fours were hit and the wide count was 26, 16 by Butler and 9 by Patterson. However, the post-lunch period was very satisfactory and it was good to see Butler and Patterson, whose total age came to 39, coming back so well to take five wickets after their disastrous start.
Ireland were probably one minute over the 205 minutes allowed to bowl their 55 overs but the Umpires ignored it. We had, in fact, bowled 359 balls as against the quota of 330 due to the wides and no-balls.
At 3:20 p.m. Warke and Rea set off against Giddings, a promising young bowler, and the enigmatic Stephenson. The start was slow but no wicket fell. Jarvis and Remy came on and 15 was hoisted in over 17. Then, in over 19, 2 wickets went down to Jarvis. Warke, on 29, played a lifter down on to his pad and thence onto the wicket. Lewis faced a wide and then fell across his wicket to be lbw. Rea and Benson played steadily until tea, taken after 25 overs, when the score was 79-2, Rea 32 and Benson 5.
Lewry, fastish left arm, and leg-spinner Salisbury were the bowlers after tea. After another 10 overs score had moved up to 116, 37 having been scored since tea, with 100 coming up in over 32. Benson was next to go, at 123, in over 38. He was lbw to Salisbury being hit on the full toss when well forward. Rea had gone to 50 out of 119 in over 36. 17 overs now remained to score 139 when Curry arrived. He hit a four in his first over and two more off Salisbury in over 40. Salisbury was withdrawn and Jarvis restored. Curry hit him for four but was lbw next ball trying to pull to leg. 151-4-20. Having got rid of Curry, Jarvis was replaced by Stephenson. Harrison, at 169, and Graham, at 172, were both bowled by the new bowler.
At 177 Giddings, with the last ball of his last over, the 50th, had Rea caught for 73, 4 runs short of 2000 runs for Ireland. It was a good catch by Hall running away at extra cover. Rea faced 177 balls and hit four fours. It was the backbone of the innings. Millar was lbw playing forward to his first ball from Stephenson. Patterson and Hoey added 15 and took Ireland to the best score in these one-day matches. Then Patterson was stumped off Salisbury at 192 in the 54th over. The 10th wicket did not fall and the final Irish score was 198-9.
Rea was adjudged Man-of-the-Match, the principal award being a cheque for £200. It was a good day for the Irish who, given some luck and fewer wides, might have worried Sussex.