Teams Played For
New Zealand, New Zealand U19, Chennai Super Kings, Essex, Basnahira Cricket Dundee, Rajasthan Royals, Northern Knights, Mumbai Indians, New Zealand A, Middlesex, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Vancouver Knights, Kolkata Knight Riders
A New Zealand fast bowling legend, Tim Southee is one of the best exponents of outswingers in the modern game. Over the years, the right-arm medium-fast bowler has made a name for himself in all three formats of the game.
He burst onto the scene at a very young age in 2008, and since then has not looked back. Not only is he a potent fast bowler, but is also a handy lower-order batsman who has the ability to strike the ball cleanly. Southee struck his 50th six in only his 36th Test match, which goes on to show his ability to hit the big ones when needed.
It was the 2008 ICC U19 World Cup, where Southee shot to fame. He was declared the man of the tournament and soon after New Zealand Cricket fast-tracked him to the senior team as the pacer made his much-awaited Test debut in the home series against England. He picked up a fifer on his debut and slammed 77 in the second innings which announced his arrival at the big stage.
Over the last decade or so, Southee has formed a formidable new-ball partnership with Trent Boult, as the duo has troubled some of the best batsmen in the world on a consistent basis.
In the same year, New Zealand toured Australia for a two-match Test series. Southee took a combined 5 wickets for 225 runs in those two matches and was expensive in the second Test as he went wicketless.
Post-2008, Southee was out of the New Zealand squad for a while, but an injury to fast bowler Daryl Tuffey, gave an opening to Southee to regain his place in the squad travelling to UAE to play three ODIs and two T20Is against a formidable Pakistan side.
The Whangarei born was selected to be in New Zealand’s squad for the 2010 T20 World Cup held in West Indies. Southee struggled in the tournament and could only capture 3 wickets in the three matches that he played as the Kiwis bowed out of the Super 8 stage in the tournament.
During the boxing day clash against Pakistan in the same year, Southee took a hat-trick and became only the third bowler to achieve this feat in international T20 cricket.
He had a remarkable 2011 World Cup, as the pacer took 18 wickets at an average of 17.33 and was the third-highest wicket-taker in the tournament, just behind Shahid Afridi and Zaheer Khan. His best figures came in a group stage match against Pakistan, where he took 3 for 25 as the Kiwis won that game convincingly.
His impact at the World Cup prompted Allan Donald to say that Southee has the potential to be the greatest swing bowler in the world.
Post the 2011 World Cup, Southee was roped in by Chennai Super Kings for the 2011 edition of the Indian Premier League. He had a dream IPL debut as he won them their opening contest against Kolkata Knight Riders defending 6 runs in the penultimate over.
In 2012, he showed his capability on Asian pitches when the pacer took 7 for 64 in Bangalore, the best figures for a Kiwi pacer in India, and despite his heroic efforts, India won that game by 5 wickets.
Southee continued to perform well and over the years, established himself as New Zealand’s strike bowler across all three formats. He was instrumental in the Black Caps defeating India in 2014 as the swing bowler took 11 wickets in the two-match Test series.
In the IPL 2014, he was bought by the Rajasthan Royals for INR 1.2 Crore, However, he didn’t play much as the team had other foreign recruits who were preferred over Southee. The following year, he was released by RR and was then purchased by Mumbai Indians with whom he went on to play for the next two years.
Southee was a part of New Zealand’s squad for the 2015 World Cup. His crowning moment came against England in a group stage match when the pacer took his career-best figures of 7 for 33 and completely rattled England’s top order.
Post the 2015 World Cup, Southee kept on performing well for New Zealand and was elevated as the stand-in captain in a T20 in 2017 and an ODI match in 2018. However, he fell down the pecking order in the ODI squad just before the 2019 World Cup, following the meteoric rise of Matt Henry and Lockie Ferguson.
Southee has arguably been New Zealand’s best fast bowler over the last decade or so. His ability to swing the ball away from the right-hander has garnered praise from the cricketing fraternities. He still has a lot to offer to New Zealand cricket, and he would love to sign off with a World Cup under his belt.
(As of March 2021)