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2018 county cricket previews: Sussex

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

In partnership with the Cricketers’ Who’s Who, here’s Wisden’s profile of Sussex for 2018.

FORMED: 1839
HOME GROUND: The 1st Central County Ground, Hove
ONE-DAY NAME: Sussex Sharks
CAPTAIN: Ben Brown
2017 RESULTS: CC2: 4/10; RL50: 4/9 South Group; T20: 5/9 South Group
HONOURS: Championship: (3) 2003, 2006, 2007; Gillette/NatWest/C&G/FP Trophy: (5) 1963, 1964, 1978, 1986, 2006; Pro40/National League/CB40/YB40/RL50: (2) 2008, 2009; Sunday League: 1982; T20 Cup: 2009

The lowdown

After a season of mid-table finishes, Sussex are starting afresh with new coach Jason Gillespie, who may have been the signing of the winter. Chris Nash and Steve Magoffin – two of Hove’s most recognisable faces over the last decade – have moved to other counties. Both will be missed, especially the 38-year-old Magoffin, who took 334 first-class wickets at 20.72 in six seasons on the south coast, though injury blighted the last of them.

A big burden rests on Chris Jordan and 23-year-old all-rounder Jofra Archer, an overnight T20 superstar who was also Sussex’s leading wicket-taker in the Championship last summer. Ishant Sharma adds support in the opening two months ahead of India’s Test series later in the summer. The spin options look bare, with Danny Briggs struggling to fulfil his early promise.

England prospect Luke Wells and Kolpak signing Stiaan van Zyl both passed 1,000 Championship runs in 2017 but the rest of the top order were inconsistent. The T20 campaign was hindered by two misfiring Taylors (Ross and Jerome), and much is expected of Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan, who is due to be available for the first half of the Blast.

Transfers

IN: Rashid Khan (Afg, T20), Ishant Sharma (Ind)
OUT: Steve Magoffin (Wor), Chris Nash (Not)

Head coach: Jason Gillespie

CEO Rob Andrew could hardly have done any better with a replacement for Mark Davis, who left by mutual consent in October. In five seasons at Headingley, Gillespie led Yorkshire to Championship promotion and then back-to-back titles in 2014 and 2015. And he now has some T20 silverware after coaching Adelaide Strikers to the Big Bash trophy over the winter. The former Australia fast bowler took 402 international wickets and was an integral part of the all-conquering team of the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Wisden prediction

CC2: 2/10
RL50: 4/9 South Group
T20: QF

CLICK FOR FULL LIST OF 2018 WISDEN PREDICTIONS AND PROFILES OF EVERY COUNTY

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