Delray Rawlins teammate Tom Haines negotiated both a fiery second spell from Jamie Overton and a verbal spat with left-arm spinner Dan Moriarty to reach a superb 105 not out in Sussex’s first innings 239 for 3 against Surrey at the Kia Oval.
It was the 21-year-old Haines’ second first-class hundred and he featured in century stands with both Aaron Thomason and Rawlins as Sussex made an impressive start to the final round of Bob Willis Trophy fixtures after winning the toss and opting for the first use of a slow-paced pitch.
Rawlins made a punchy 65 from 88 balls, launching both Moriarty and Scott Borthwick’s leg-spin for massive straight sixes, while Thomason’s nuggety 49 in an unfamiliar opening role was another important contribution to the Sussex cause.
Rawlins had just hit Moriarty for his first six, followed by one of his eventual six fours, when non-striker Haines and the bowler exchanged heated words and the match was held up for several minutes while Neil Bainton and Ben Debenham, the umpires, spoke to both players and Surrey captain Burns.
But Rawlins responded with a gorgeous off drive for four and Haines also pulled Overton, who has left Somerset in search of regular red-ball cricket with Surrey, to the ropes in the best passage of cricket of the day.
Rawlins batted for 130 minutes hitting 6 fours and 2 sixes.