Mike Yardy held his nerve under the Hove floodlights with a cool unbeaten 21 to steer Sussex Sharks to their second Twenty20 win in three games as Surrey Brown Caps dived to their first defeat of the season.
Yardy and Carl Hopkinson (10) put on an unbroken 32 to hold off a late Surrey fightback as Sussex, chasing 124 to win, got home by five wickets with 10 balls to spare.
Surrey were always fighting an uphill battle after being dismissed for 123 - their lowest ever score in the competition.
Pace bowler Yasir Arafat (four for 19) checked Surrey's progress, and Sussex overcame the loss of three wickets in mid-innings to claim their first victory over Surrey in the competition at their headquarters.
Sussex got off to a flyer with Matt Prior (23) and Murray Goodwin (30) thrashing 57 in only five overs before Prior holed out at third man in Rikki Clarke's first over.
Former Zimbabwe star Goodwin was bowled by Tim Murtagh and skipper Chris Adams failed to make an impression by being stumped off former Sussex leg-spinner Ian Salisbury.
The Sharks' mid-innings wobble continued with Arafat being bowled attempting to slog Nayan Doshi and Chris Nash holing out at wide mid on off Clarke.
New signing Arafat snapped up three wickets in his final over as Surrey were pegged back on winning the toss before a near capacity crowd of 5,000.
The visitors to failed to find the boundary in the final nine overs of their innings, and former Pakistani Test leg spinner Mushtaq Ahmed helped apply the breaks by taking two for 18 in his four overs.
Mushtaq struck first by bowling Mark Ramprakash for a run-a-ball 23, after he had put on 40 in six overs with Azhar Mahmood, and later sent back Stewart Walters for only a single.
Surrey disappointingly lost their last seven wickets for only 46 after Mahmood was bowled by medium pacer Luke Wright having struck three fours in making 27 from 24 balls.
There were only eight fours and two sixes in Surrey's innings and they crucially lost in-form openers James Benning and Ally Brown inside the first four overs.
T20, Twenty20 and Twenty20 Cup are registered trade marks of the England and Wales Cricket Board Limited (the “ECB”).
Products and services on this website are not offered in connection with, or with the endorsement of the ECB