James Taylor’s first double-hundred for Nottinghamshire helped lead his side to safety on the final day of their LV= county championship match against Sussex at Trent Bridge.
Taylor finished with an unbeaten 204 as the two captains agreed to shake hands at ten to five with Notts having reached 478 for eight in their first innings.
The 23-year old was joined in a partnership of 200 with Ajmal Shahzad, who scored 77, his highest score since joining Notts.
Shahzad's role was key, according to Taylor. “I’m delighted to have scored the runs I did,” he said.
"It’s always important to get them when it matters. We were under pressure to deliver but I couldn’t have done it without Ajmal at the other end.
“He can be proud of his performance. He batted exceptionally well against a very good bowling attack. I thought he played outstandingly well.”
Sussex shouted confidently for a catch as Ajmal Shahzad lunged forward to Monty Panesar early on the final morning but whether it was there was any bat involved was unclear as Mike Yardy dropped the offering at short leg.
Shahzad decided that attack was better than defence has he heaved Lewis Hatchett into the New Stand and then drove Panesar back over his head for four in the next over.
Taylor’s 15th career century (268 mins, 184 balls, 10x4) came off Magoffin, who he worked for a three through midwicket. The next ball was hit for four by Shahzad, bringing up the hundredth run of the partnership.
On 42 Shahzad nearly picked out Hatchett, fifteen yards in at fine leg, the sweep off Panesar just brushing the leaping fielder’s fingers.
Taylor’s four off Jordan brought up the 100 runs for the session, although it should probably have been stopped by a diving Panesar at mid on.
A risky Taylor single, pushed straight to Joyce, would have done nothing for Shahzad’s nerves in the 40s but he reached his first Trent Bridge 50 to great acclaim (107 balls, 6x4, 1x6) shortly afterwards.
Chris Nash came on for his first bowl just before lunch and his first ball seemed to take the edge of Taylor’s bat and fly to Jordan at slip but to the frustration of the bowler the umpire seemed to indicate that only pad was involved.
Nottinghamshire’s primary objective of the day was achieved soon after lunch as the follow-on mark was saved.
The pair took their seventh-wicket partnership to exactly 200 – the fifth-highest in the county’s history – when Shahzad fell, cutting Chris Jordan (claiming his fourth 5-wicket haul of the summer) to Matt Machan at point.
Shahzad looked crestfallen as he walked off, knowing he’d missed an opportunity for a first career hundred.
Luke Fletcher (14) nudged Nash into the hands of Jordan at point, leaving Andre Adams to make a typically brutal 28 not out, which featured two sixes.
The final cheers of the day were left for Taylor, who brought up his double-hundred (357 balls, 21x4) just before the declaration came.
Notts remain fifth in the table, having collected eight points from the match, with Sussex obtaining ten and moving up to second place.