SUSSEX took control of their LV= Championship Division One game with Durham yesterday, reducing the visitors to 92 for four before rain forced an early close at Arundel.
That score represented a minor recovery for bottom-of-the-table Durham after James Anyon had taken two wickets with successive balls to reduce them to one for two in the third over.
Mark Stoneman struck a half-century, but he was removed by Monty Panesar shortly before the lunch interval to put the hosts back in the ascendancy.
Anyon made the breakthrough in his second over when Will Smith fenced outside off stump and Mike Yardy dived to his left at second slip to take an excellent catch.
Gordon Muchall lost his off stump to the next delivery driving airily but Ben Stokes did manage to avert the hat-trick.
The left-hander was soon timing the ball sweetly and had hit four boundaries in his 20 when Steve Magoffin was rewarded for an excellent new-ball spell with a wicket in his seventh over.
The Australian tempted Stokes with extra width and his full-blooded drive was intercepted in front of his face by Yardy in the slips.
Stoneman reached his half-century off 80 deliveries but was trapped leg before by Panesar.
There was just enough time for Paul Collingwood to get off the mark with a boundary when rain forced the players off five minutes before lunch with 27.4 overs bowled.