Godleman and Reece hit fifties on Day One
Billy Godleman, who passed 7,000 career first-class runs, and Luis Reece both hit half-centuries as Derbyshire enjoyed a productive first day against Sussex at Hove.
Reece (51) hit a score of 50 or more for a third successive innings as part of a 101-run opening stand with Ben Slater (48), before Godleman (51) also hit a half-century as Derbyshire reached 227-3 at tea.
Sussex fought back with six wickets in the final session, but runs with the lower-order from Harvey Hosein, who hit an unbeaten 38, help the visitors end the day strongly closing on 338-9.
After being asked to bat first, Reece and Slater had Derbyshire’s 100 up in the 25th over before George Garton picked up wickets in successive overs in his first Championship appearance of the summer.
Shortly after passing 50 for the sixth time this season, Reece, who had hit seven fours, was lbw playing no shot to one that nipped back then Slater (48) miss-timed a pull to third man when Garton dropped short.
Wayne Madsen (25) fell in similar fashion to Reece to give David Wiese the first of his four wickets but Derbyshire recovered nicely in a stand of 87 in 22 overs between Godleman and Alex Hughes for the fourth wicket.
Godleman passed 7,000 first-class runs on 42 and went to his sixth score of 50 or above of the summer off the first ball after tea. But he fell in the next over, caught behind off Garton, having hit six fours.
His departure, however, sparked a flurry of wickets with Wiese picking up two smart return catches to dismiss Matt Critchley (11) and later Will Davis (18), a diving effort to intercept a full-blooded drive.
Stiaan van Zyl ended a promising innings by Hughes on 46 when he was superbly caught at fly slip by Luke Wells. The South Africa medium-pacer was given the new ball in a surprise move but it paid off as Hardus Viljoen (7) padded up to a straight one.
Harry Podmore (1) was Wiese’s fourth victim off a thin edge to keeper Ben Brown but wicketkeeper Hosein frustrated Sussex’s efforts to wrap up the innings with an unbeaten 38 as he and 16-year-old off-spinner Hamidullah Qadri added an unbeaten 21 for the last wicket.
There was some bad news for Derbyshire after the close of play as it was confirmed that Godleman had broken a bone in his hand while batting. He is unlikely to feature again in this match and will see a specialist in the next 24 hours to determine the full extent of his injury.
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