Sussex beat their Lord’s record with 523


Sussex pushed on, initially slowly, from their overnight total to set a Lord’s club record

Sussex 523
Middlesex 103-0

Sussex beat their previous record score at Lord’s by one run after a fantastic double century by Cheteshwar Pujara.

The previous record of 522 came in 2005. On that day, Middlesex were bowled out for just 128 in return, eventually losing by an innings and 232.

After eclipsing the county’s record, the Gujarati was last out for 231 when he was caught on the boundary off Tom Helm, who took 5-109. This was only the youngster’s fourth 5-wicket haul. Teenager Danial Ibrahim scored an impressive 36 as Middlesex toiled to get any help from the wicket.

Pujara’s 231 was achieved with 21 fours and three sixes.

He has now reached 997 runs and scored three double centuries for the season. The 34-year-old Indian test cricketer was not out 115 overnight and went one run better today adding another 116 although obviously got out one more time than on Tuesday.

The personal record he smashed was much older.

The last Sussex batsman to score a double century at Lords was none other than Colonel His Highness Shri Sir Ranjitsinhji Vibhaji II, Jam Saheb of Nawanagar, GCSI, GBE.

Ranjitsinhji scored it in 1897 playing for Sussex against the MCC. Pujara is actually the first Sussex player to score 200 at Lords against Middlesex. A few players, including Kepler Wessels, have done it at Hove.

The Colonel’s day in 1897 didn’t finish all that well. Sussex still lost that match! Ironically, despite his royal breeding, Sir Ranjitsinhji Vibhaji II, suffered much racism under the Raj and adopted the nickname ‘Smith‘.

Despite his record being beaten today, his legacy however is everlasting. India’s domestic Ranji Trophy is named after him.

Ranjitsinhji, here pictured in 1908, was the last Sussex batsman to score a double hundred at Lords. Despite that, his Sussex side lost that 1897 fixture.

With Sam Robson and Mark Stoneman opening, the Sussex bowlers were well fired up, especially former Middlesex captain Steven Finn. Behind him were the young but inexperienced Archie Lenham, Ibrahim and the Greek international Ari Karvelas.

The Middlesex pair started well.

They saw off 11 overs before another highlight of the day, the first ball delivered by 17-year-old Ibrahim.

On a day of records, Ari Karvelas came so close to his maiden wicket. Oli Carter dropped Robson offering an easy chance on 15. Had any Greek international ever taken a wicket at Lord’s? It felt like that sort of day here.

Stoneman and Robson played superbly and saw it through to the end with four byes off the last ball taking them to triple figures.

Middlesex Cricket

Sussex Cricket

Annie Chave – Cricket Columnist

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