Tim Southee, New Zealand’s formidable T20I skipper, etched his name in the annals of history by becoming the highest wicket-taker in T20I cricket. The milestone moment transpired on Wednesday, August 30, during the gripping clash between England and New Zealand in the first T20I of the four-match series.
Southee overtakes Shakib
Leading into the game, Southee was locked in a neck-and-neck battle with Bangladesh’s star allrounder Shakib Al Hasan, with both players jointly holding the record for the highest wickets in T20Is at 140 each. As anticipation soared, Southee emerged triumphant, scalping his 141st wicket by dismissing English opener Jonny Bairstow at Chester-le-Street.
Southee’s trajectory to this historic feat has been marked by unwavering dedication and a relentless pursuit of excellence. His mastery over the cricket ball was evident as he conjured a delivery that deviated away from Bairstow, tempting the right-handed batter to prod at it. The outcome was inevitable as the ball found the edge and nestled safely into the hands of Daryl Mitchell in the slip cordon.
Southee’s achievement marred by New Zealand’s defeat
Despite the magnitude of his achievement, the spirited skipper’s focus remained firmly fixed on the ongoing series. England’s duo of Dawid Malan and Harry Brook conspired to wrest control of the game, ultimately steering their team to victory with three wickets remaining and an ample 36 balls to spare.
As Tim Southee basks in the glory of his latest accolade, his journey from a debut against England on February 2, 2008, to the pinnacle of T20I wickets resonates as a tale of unyielding perseverance. The seasoned right-arm pacer has graced 111 T20I matches, skillfully amassing 141 wickets, a feat complemented by two remarkable five-wicket hauls and an impressive four-for. Notably, his most memorable bowling performance (5/18) transpired in Auckland against Pakistan in 2010.
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