Chasing a mammoth 220 to win, the Sharks fell 32 runs short as Glamorgan won a thrilling fixture at the 1st Central County Ground in Hove.
Captain Kiran Carlson was the pick of a clinical Glamorgan bowling attack. His tricky off-spin foxed both Ravi Bopara and Pakistan’s Shadab Khan, with each caught on the boundary inside the opening 10 overs.
Carlson kept a tight line, finishing with figures of 2 for 13 from his two overs.
Paceman Jamie McIlroy was also excellent, removing Sharks opener Tom Clark with a full, quick delivery which the batter missed entirely. McIlroy later claimed the wickets of James Coles and Fynn Hudson-Prentice, who was bowled attempting a reverse-scoop.
Clark’s opening partner, Tom Haines, was run out in a peculiar manner. Seam bowler Dan Douthwaite deflected a straight drive from Tom Alsop off his boot and on to Haines’s stumps.
At 62 for 4, Sussex looked dead and buried, until their vice-captain fought back. Tom Alsop built steadily, rotating strike and scoring boundaries, when possible, to finish with 58 off 42.
He was joined by keeper-bat Michael Burgess in the ninth over. Together the pair put Sussex back in the fight, punishing some short-pitched bowling from Peter Hatzoglou. Progress was made and the partnership reached 71 before Alsop was finally bowled by a searing Ruaidhri Smith yorker.
Two overs later, Burgess would also depart, caught at extra-cover, skying a Dan Douthwaite delivery.
From there, the Sharks rapidly disintegrated. Coles and Hudson-Prentice came and went as the home side finished on 187 for 8.
Earlier, Chris Cooke and Colin Ingram propelled the visitors to 219 for 5 from their 20 overs. Fresh off hitting Glamorgan’s fastest-ever century last week, Cooke demolished a sloppy Sharks attack.
His flashy fifty came off 26 balls and included four brutal sixes. Particularly impressive was his massive blow off Nathan McAndrew in the 15th over. Having under-edged a four earlier in the over, Cooke caressed a full and fast delivery over cover, into the baying crowd.
Ingram was equally impressive. Falling two shy of fifty, the South African took a particular liking to the spin of Shadab Kahn, surgically cutting him for four, before slog sweeping an enormous six in the 14th over.
Despite the stellar batting, Sussex were mostly to blame for Glamorgan’s sizeable total. The bowling attack were abysmal all afternoon and especially poor in the powerplay, dropping two catches and conceding 16 runs in extras as Glamorgan finished the opening six overs on 73 for 1.
They did manage to remove Carlson, however. After a couple of lusty blows, Carlson top-edged a short ball from Henry Crocombe. Wicketkeeper Burgess took the catch.
At only 21, Crocombe is one of the home side’s younger talents but he outperformed his lacklustre team-mates. After dismissing Carlson, the youngster soon had opener Sam Northeast caught at cover and Ingram at Cow Corner.
His fellow bowlers weren’t so tidy. Bowling three overs each, neither McAndrew nor Khan took a wicket and were pummelled for 40 and 38 runs respectively.
England star Tymal Mills was also expensive, leaking 36 runs in his four overs which included a massive Billy Root six that sailed high over the square-leg boundary.
To his credit, the 30-year-old reclaimed some pride with two wickets in the final over – the brilliant Cooke mistiming a short ball and new man Douthwaite caught in the deep.
The win continues Glamorgan’s excellent run of four victories from five fixtures. Sussex still have only one win.