James Neesham

James Neesham

Player Bio

Jimmy Neesham, hailing from Auckland, New Zealand, kickstarted his cricket career at a tender age with an unwavering love and enthusiasm for the sport.His domestic cricket career commenced with Auckland, but it was his transition to Otago Volts that brought him into the limelight. During the 2011/12 season, Neesham showcased his prowess in the 50-over format, scoring three 40-plus runs in seven innings, all at a striking rate of more than a run a ball.His exceptional bowling skills were evident in his career-best performance of 5 for 44 against Wellington and 4 for 23 against Canterbury. This led to his selection for the limited-overs squads for the South Africa tour.

Neesham's talent didn't go unnoticed in the T20 franchise arena. He was picked in the IPL for season 7 and played in the 2014 Caribbean Premier League. His journey continued with various teams like Delhi Daredevils, Guyana Amazon Warriors, Derbyshire, Kent County Cricket Club, and others in different T20 leagues around the globe. Each stint further honed his skills and prepared him for the grand stage of international cricket.

Rise to International Cricket

Jimmy Neesham's international debut was nothing short of spectacular. During his Test debut against India, he showed exceptional skill by scoring an unbeaten 137. This outstanding achievement still remains the highest score on debut by a Test number 8 batsman. However, this was just the beginning of his impressive career. In June 2014, he made history by achieving a century in his second test against the West Indies. He became the first New Zealander to score centuries in his first two matches, proving his talent and dedication to the sport.

His ODI career also saw remarkable feats. During the ODI match against Sri Lanka on January 3rd, 2019, Neesham achieved an incredible feat by scoring 34 runs in a single over and hitting five sixes, thereby establishing a new record for the highest number of runs scored by a New Zealand batsman. This remarkable achievement highlights his exceptional skills and talent as a cricketer.His selection in New Zealand's squad for the 2019 Cricket World Cup was a testament to his indispensable role in the team. During the tournament, he achieved his 50th ODI in a match against Afghanistan and took his first five-wicket haul.

Neesham's T20I career has also been noteworthy, with significant contributions both with the bat and the ball. His journey from a budding cricketer to a reliable all-rounder for New Zealand is a narrative of hard work, perseverance, and unyielding passion for the game.

The tale of Jimmy Neesham is not just about cricket; it's about a young boy's dream, relentless efforts, and an undying spirit that inspires many budding cricketers across the globe.

Major Milestones and Notable Performances

Jimmy Neesham's cricketing career is adorned with significant milestones and memorable performances that have left an indelible mark on the cricketing world. His journey from being on the brink of retirement to almost clinching the 2019 World Cup for New Zealand is nothing short of a cinematic narrative.

The 2019 World Cup Saga:

One of the most defining moments of Neesham's career came during the 2019 World Cup. He played a pivotal role in New Zealand's journey to the finals, showcasing his all-round abilities. In the nail-biting final against England, Neesham claimed three crucial wickets and executed a final-ball run-out to tie the scores after 50 overs. Entrusted with the bat in the Super Over, he scored 13 off 5 balls, including a massive six off Jofra Archer. Although New Zealand narrowly missed the trophy, Neesham's performance was etched in the annals of cricket history.

Test Debut and Early Success:

Neesham made his Test debut against India in February 2014, marking his arrival with a century. He was at the other end when Brendon McCullum scored a historic Test triple century. Neesham continued his form by scoring a century in his next Test against West Indies, becoming only the eighth player in Test history to score hundreds in his first two Tests.

ODI and T20I Exploits:

Neesham's ODI and T20I careers have also seen significant contributions. His aggressive batting and effective medium-fast bowling have often provided New Zealand with crucial breakthroughs. His statistics reflect his impact with 1437 runs in 73 ODIs at a strike rate of 99.17 and 824 runs in 69 T20Is at a strike rate of 158.15. His bowling has also been handy with 14 wickets in Tests, 675 wickets in ODIs, and 1010 wickets in T20Is.

Domestic and League Performances:

Neesham's domestic and league performances have also been noteworthy. His stints with various teams like Auckland, Otago, and numerous T20 franchises globally have showcased his adaptability and prowess in different conditions. His performances in domestic one-day cricket, especially in 2018, where he scored 503 runs at an average of 62.87 with a strike rate of 110.79, earned him an international recall against Sri Lanka.

Resurgence Post 2017:

Post the 2017 Champions Trophy, Neesham faced a drop in form which led to his exclusion from the national side. However, instead of bowing down, he took a break, returned stronger, and dominated the domestic circuit. His comeback was marked by explosive performances against Sri Lanka in January 2019, which cemented his spot in the 2019 World Cup squad.

These milestones and performances reflect Neesham's cricketing journey's resilience and determination. His ability to bounce back and deliver when it matters the most showcases his mettle as a cricketer, making him a valuable asset to New Zealand cricket.

Playing Style and Strengths

Jimmy Neesham, a versatile all-rounder from New Zealand, has made a significant mark in the international cricket arena with his all-round capabilities. His playing style is a blend of aggressive batting and effective medium-fast bowling, which makes him a valuable asset to his team in various formats of the game.

Batting Style:

Neesham is a left-handed batsman known for his aggressive batting style. He has the ability to change the course of the game with his powerful striking and can score runs quickly when needed. His fearless approach at the crease often puts the opposition bowlers under pressure. Neesham has showcased his batting prowess in crucial situations, most notably in the 2019 World Cup where he played a vital role in the final against England. He was entrusted with the bat in the Super Over and scored 13 off 5 balls, including a massive six off Jofra Archer. His batting style is characterized by clean hitting and the ability to find the boundary with ease, especially in high-pressure situations.

Bowling Style:

On the bowling front, Neesham is a right-arm medium-fast bowler. He has the knack of picking up crucial wickets and can be relied upon to bowl tight overs. His bowling style is about maintaining a good line and length while mixing up his pace to deceive the batsman. Neesham's ability to break partnerships and provide breakthroughs at critical junctures of the game has often proved to be beneficial for his team.

All-Rounder Capability:

Neesham's all-rounder capability enhances the balance of the team, providing an additional bowling option and depth in batting. His presence in the team allows for more flexibility in the line-up, making him a crucial player in New Zealand's cricketing setup.

Clutch Performances:

Neesham has a reputation for rising to the occasion in clutch situations. His performances in the 2019 World Cup are a testament to his ability to perform under pressure. Whether it's with the bat or ball, Neesham's contributions in crunch situations have often swung the game in New Zealand's favour.


Neesham's adaptability across different formats is also a significant strength. He has performed well in Tests, ODIs, and T20Is, showcasing his ability to adjust his game according to the format and the situation. His adaptability makes him a valuable player in the modern cricket era, where the ability to perform across different formats is highly prized.

Current Standing and Future Prospects

Jimmy Neesham, a name synonymous with New Zealand's cricketing prowess, continues to be a formidable force in the international cricket arena. His journey, marked by ups and downs, has shaped him into a cricketer of repute, known for his all-round abilities and a knack for performing under pressure.

Current Standing

As of now, Neesham's cricketing journey spans from 2012 to 2023, showcasing his enduring presence in the international circuit. His recent performances indicate a player who has matured over the years, understanding the nuances of the game better with each passing match. His stint in various cricketing leagues and teams, including the likes of Auckland, Delhi Daredevils, Derbyshire, and notably the New Zealand national team, has enriched his experience, making him a valuable asset to any team he represents.

In the recent matches, Neesham's performance has been noteworthy. For instance, in a match for the Invincibles against the Originals on August 27, 2023, he scored a crucial 57* runs, showcasing his batting prowess. His bowling has been effective too, as seen in a T20I match on August 17, 2023, where he took 2 wickets for 15 runs. These performances underline his continued relevance in the competitive cricketing world.

Future Prospects

Looking ahead, the future seems promising for Neesham. His all-round abilities make him a sought-after player in various cricketing leagues around the world. His experience and the ability to handle pressure situations, as seen in the 2019 World Cup, make him a player to watch out for in the upcoming matches and tournaments.

Moreover, Neesham's adaptability to different formats of the game, be it Tests, ODIs, or T20s, adds to his value as a cricketer. His statistics, with a batting average of 33.76 in Tests, 28.17 in ODIs, and a striking bowling performance with a best bowling figure of 5/27 in ODIs, speak volumes about his capabilities on the field.

Furthermore, Neesham's recent performances in various leagues and his continued selection in the New Zealand national team for different tours and series indicate a bright future. His ability to contribute significantly with both bat and ball will continue to make him a crucial player for his teams.

Jimmy Neesham's journey from contemplating retirement to becoming a crucial player for New Zealand in the 2019 World Cup is nothing short of inspirational. His story is a testament to his resilience, talent, and the indomitable spirit that defines New Zealand cricket.

Neesham's contributions to the game go beyond his on-field performances. His journey, marked by perseverance and the ability to bounce back stronger from setbacks, serves as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring cricketers. His down-to-earth demeanour, coupled with a sense of humour that often lightens up the social media world, makes him a beloved figure among cricket enthusiasts.

As Neesham continues to carve his niche in the cricketing annals, his legacy is likely to be remembered as one of a gritty, talented, and charismatic cricketer who brought joy to the fans and contributed significantly to New Zealand cricket's glorious journey.

His story reiterates the essence of sportsmanship - that with talent, hard work, and a never-give-up attitude, one can overcome the toughest challenges and shine on the world stage. Jimmy Neesham is indeed a shining star in the cricketing galaxy, whose journey continues to inspire and whose game continues to enthral cricket aficionados around the globe.

What is Jimmy Neesham known for? 
Jimmy Neesham is known for his all-round cricketing abilities, being a capable batsman and a potent left-arm medium-fast bowler. He's also known for his crucial performances in high-pressure situations, notably in the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
When did Jimmy Neesham make his international debut? 
Jimmy Neesham made his international debut for New Zealand on February 9, 2013, in a T20I match against South Africa.
What are some notable performances by Jimmy Neesham? 
Some notable performances include his five-wicket haul on Test debut in 2014 and scoring crucial runs in the 2019 World Cup final, although New Zealand narrowly lost the match to England.
Which teams has Jimmy Neesham played for in domestic and international cricket? 
Besides representing New Zealand internationally, Neesham has played for domestic teams like Auckland, Otago, and Wellington, and has also participated in global T20 leagues, playing for teams like the Delhi Daredevils (now Delhi Capitals) and Derbyshire.
What is Jimmy Neesham's highest score in One Day Internationals (ODIs)? 
Jimmy Neesham's highest score in ODIs is 97 not out, which he scored against Pakistan in the 2018-2019 season.