Match ends, Bournemouth 2, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe said he has been "pleasantly surprised" by David Brooks, after the Cherries' summer signing netted both goals in a 2-0 victory over 10-man Brighton.
Brooks collected the ball on the edge of the area, turned onto his left foot and cracked a low shot past Mat Ryan to open the scoring midway through the first half.
The 21-year-old Welshman then flicked Ryan Fraser's teasing cross over the Brighton goalkeeper with 13 minutes remaining to seal three points for the hosts.
"He showed his quality in both moments," Howe said of the former Sheffield United man.
"We knew that we were getting a very technical and intelligent player, but he really buys into the team ethic and has a tactical understanding of how the team plays, and an ability to handle the Premier League and not get carried away with his early season success."
Howe added Bournemouth may have been fortunate to secure the services of the Wales international in July.
"He had glandular fever at the end of last season and that was probably the reason we were able to sign him, as if he'd stayed fit and kept playing he might have gone beyond us [to a bigger club]," he said.
Asmir Begovic had been the busier of the two goalkeepers in the opening 20 minutes at the Vitality Stadium, denying Yves Bissouma from point-blank range before getting down low to palm Jurgen Locadia's effort to safety.
The Seagulls were reduced to 10 men after 73 minutes when Lewis Dunk's tackle on Callum Wilson earned the defender a second yellow card.
The win lifts Bournemouth up three places to eighth, while Brighton remain in 13th.
No way past Begovic
Having seen their team lose six of their previous seven league matches, the majority of Bournemouth fans will have viewed Saturday's game as a must-win encounter.
And the Cherries had Begovic to thank for keeping the score at 0-0 in the early stages of the first half as Brighton took the game to their hosts.
The former Stoke and Chelsea goalkeeper pulled off fine saves to deny Bissouma and Locadia, before getting down low to his left to prevent Dunk from cancelling out Brooks' fine opener on the stroke of half-time.
Begovic also did well to smother Florin Andone's goalbound header not long after the restart - although the linesman's flag was already up for offside.
Brighton continued to push for an equaliser as the second half wore on, but Dunk's red card - 12 minutes after his first booking - all but ended their hopes of a first away win over Bournemouth since 2007.
Brooks' second goal - a fine header from Fraser's cross - capped a fine performance from the 21-year-old, who has now scored five goals in his first 15 Premier League appearances for Howe's team.
Lady Luck not on Brighton's side
Brighton managed just one attempt on target in their last away game - a 1-0 reverse at lowly Burnley - and that only came deep into added time at the end of the second half.
Manager Chris Hughton left Glenn Murray and Anthony Knockaert on the bench at the Vitality Stadium, but their replacements - Locadia and Andone - caused the home defence numerous problems in the first half.
Locadia in particular was unfortunate not to get his name on the scoresheet, his low effort from the edge of the penalty area tipped around the post by Begovic.
Hughton will have been pleased with his team's display until Dunk's sending-off, with replays suggesting the 27-year-old may have been unfortunate to be given his marching orders.
Referee Mike Dean showed the Brighton defender his first yellow card for a challenge on Brooks, but the Bournemouth match-winner appeared to be caught by the retreating Bissouma.
The visitors remain comfortably above the relegation places despite the defeat, but their lack of firepower away from home - only Fulham and Cardiff have scored fewer goals on the road this season - is becoming a major cause for concern.
Man of the match - David Brooks (Bournemouth)
Another assist for Fraser - the stats
- Bournemouth registered a clean sheet in the Premier League for the first time in eight games, since a 3-0 win against Fulham in October.
- Brighton have lost three consecutive Premier League games within a single season for the first time since December 2017.
- Bournemouth have seen their opponents pick up five red cards this season in the Premier League, more than any other side.
- Hughton has never beaten Bournemouth in his managerial career, losing four and drawing once (all while in charge of Brighton).
- Brooks has netted five goals in his past 11 league appearances, after managing just three in his previous 35.
- Joshua King has been directly involved in 44 Premier League goals for Bournemouth (35 goals, 9 assists), 10 more than any other player (Callum Wilson on 34).
- Bournemouth's Jefferson Lerma picked up a divisional-high eighth booking of the season in the Premier League, with only Harry Arter in 2016-17 accruing more in a single campaign in the competition for the Cherries (11).
- Only Eden Hazard (9) has registered more assists in the Premier League this season than Bournemouth's Ryan Fraser (8).
Win 'sets us up for Christmas' - what the managers said
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe: "We were a lot better in the second half, even before the [second] goal and the sending-off we had control of the game. We were indebted to our goalkeeper in the first half so we were pleased to come through.
"The recent run we've been on has been tough. At 1-0 the game's still in the balance but we stood firm. Hopefully that sets us up nicely for the Christmas period as we've got two matches now [against Tottenham and Manchester United] where we can really attack."
Brighton manager Chris Hughton:
"No doubts about [Dunk's] second yellow, but for the first we felt it was Yves Bissouma who makes the first contact, so that was harsh on Lewis.
"I was really pleased with our performance, particularly in the first half. It was tough to come in at 1-0 down but it's about making sure you take your chances.
"We were up against a talented team playing at home. But overall, apart from that last period [after the second goal and the red card] which was very difficult for us, we were always in the game."
Bournemouth travel to Tottenham Hotspur on 26 December (15:00 GMT), while Brighton welcome Arsenal to the Amex Stadium (17:15).
- 3S Cook
- 20BrooksBooked at 43minsSubstituted forIbeat 90+2'minutes
- 8LermaBooked at 31mins
- 19StanislasSubstituted forFraserat 65'minutes
- 17KingSubstituted forMoussetat 86'minutes
- 5DunkBooked at 73mins
- 13GroßSubstituted forBongat 76'minutes
- 9LocadiaSubstituted forKnockaertat 70'minutes
- 10AndoneSubstituted forMurrayat 80'minutes
- Mike Dean
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Bournemouth 2, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.
Callum Wilson (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Bernardo (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Substitution, Bournemouth. Jordon Ibe replaces David Brooks.
David Brooks (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Yves Bissouma (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Attempt blocked. Lys Mousset (Bournemouth) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Callum Wilson.
Hand ball by Callum Wilson (Bournemouth).
Lys Mousset (Bournemouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Davy Pröpper (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Foul by Lys Mousset (Bournemouth).
Leon Balogun (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Bournemouth. Lys Mousset replaces Joshua King.
Attempt missed. Joshua King (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Callum Wilson.
Offside, Bournemouth. Simon Francis tries a through ball, but Joshua King is caught offside.
Attempt saved. Charlie Daniels (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Ryan Fraser.
Attempt blocked. Steve Cook (Bournemouth) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Nathan Aké.
Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Glenn Murray replaces Florin Andone.
Steve Cook (Bournemouth) wins a free kick on the right wing.