One-day century ‘bittersweet’ for former Otago man

Jimmy Neesham
Jimmy Neesham
Jimmy Neesham described the moment as "bittersweet".

But that does not seem adequate somehow.

The former Otago all-rounder had just played one of the best knocks of his career.

He stroked his maiden one-day hundred and had threatened to drag Wellington through to victory on a tired pitch at the University of Otago Oval on Saturday.

But he was deceived by a slower ball from Volts seamer Matt Bacon on 100 and  brilliantly caught by Hamish Rutherford, who scampered 20m from mid-off to haul it in.

Neesham’s dismissal left the game teetering and Bacon captured the last wicket to secure a tense seven-run win in a low-scoring affair.

"It is obviously bittersweet," the 28-year-old said.

"We got so close to getting across the line on what was a really, really tough track."

Neesham has played most of his cricket in Otago but transferred  to Wellington this season to help reinvigorate his career.

He wants his spot back in the Black Caps side and has been in good form, particularly with the bat. He has scored three half-centuries and a hundred in the competition so far.

"I’m really happy with the way I’m batting. As you said I’m scoring runs almost every innings at the moment and I want to keep that going as long as I can.

"There is no secret about the reason why I went to Wellington. If I can continue going out there and putting numbers on the board and making my name irrefusable, I guess."

Neesham, who has had back problems in the past, said he was fit and was pleased with how his bowling is going as well.

"I’ve had a full off-season bowling in the nets and I’ve got a lot of overs under my belt. I think that is showing in the accuracy I’m bowling with in both forms of the game."

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