Dom Bess hailed a “great day” as Yorkshire brilliantly hit back at Sussex and got themselves into a winning position after three days at Hove.
Bess was one of a number of key contributors to Yorkshire’s fightback after Sussex held sway for the first two days, and now the visitors need only 63 more to win with seven wickets in hand as they pursue a 201 target.
Yorkshire started the day on 216-7 in the first innings in reply to 361. They ended up on 298 thanks in the main to a brutal 45 from Ben Coad before Sussex were bowled out for 137 second time around.
Bess bowled unchanged from the Sea End through the afternoon and claimed three wickets before later watching Adam Lyth and Shai Hope hit unbeaten fifties in the chase, which sits at 138-3.
“It was a great day,” said the off-spinner.
“If we looked at it, we were behind the eight-ball. We were 140 behind, and we spoke a bit last night about having to stand up in tough situations.
“We’ve obviously been through a pretty tough two seasons, and we thought things were going really well when we were driving the Leicester game before we lost. Then we didn’t play for four days at Bristol.
“Granted, we haven’t won it yet. There’s still a bit to do. But today re-enforces the things we’ve started drilling in. It’s coming out into effect.
“It felt like it clicked for us today. Gibbo has just said that he knows he’s been tough on us because he knows what we can do, and that was the proof of it.”
Bess went on: “The way Coady and Mickey came and played at the start of the day, they got us as close as we could to their score.
“Then, we stuck to the task with the ball. They were 40-0, and we took eight wickets in the (afternoon) session.
“If you want to dominate this division – there’s some tough teams who are going to come hard at us because of us being Yorkshire – they’re the sort of days you need.”
On his own performance, he said: “It felt good. There wasn’t any spin at all.
“I also thought Carson, their off-spinner, bowled beautifully and is going to be a great prospect. He showed how to do it in the first innings, and I learnt a bit from him.”
Bess also gave his view on the day’s controversial moment when Sussex thought they had dismissed Shai Hope for nine when he left a Henry Crocombe delivery and immediately grounded his bat, only to leave his crease just as quickly. Wicketkeeper Oli Carter threw the stumps down and appealed, but it was turned down by umpire Neil Pratt from square-leg.
Sussex were incensed, but Pratt stuck to his original decision after deliberating with colleague Rob White.
Bess added: “I’d say Shai was not out.
“We looked back it at and he’s touched his ground immediately after leaving it.
“I’d say, and I’d need to clarify this rule, that say you were run out and you touched your bat down and it bounced, you’d be not out. But to be honest, they are the sort of things that need to go your way in those chases.”