New Zealand domestic cricket November 9, 2009

Chris Nevin closes in on 100th game

Cricinfo staff

Chris Nevin, the former New Zealand wicketkeeper-batsman, is poised to become only the fourth Wellington player to reach 100 first-class games. The landmark will come in Wellington's Plunket Shield season opener against Canterbury at home tomorrow.

The three Wellington players to have played more than 100 first-class games are Evan Gray (120), Robert Vance (119) and Ervin McSweenery (102). "They are all big names in Wellington cricket, so to be up there having played a similar number of games to three of the legends is a great feeling," Nevin said."I've got my family coming up from Christchurch to watch the game and I'm really looking forward to it."

Nevin has scored 4579 runs at 36.05 for Wellington, with four centuries, and has taken 271 dismissals. Having made his state debut in a 50-over match at the Basin Reserve on New Year's Day in 1996, Nevin began his first-class career a few weeks later against Northern Districts. "We played very good cricket for three days and we set them about 440 to win on a wearing Basin wicket and they chased it down on the last day," he recalled. "So it was an incredible game of cricket and certainly a very exciting start to my career."

He also remembered a memorable match against Canterbury during the victorious 2000-01 season. "We got a good first innings total and then took a long time to bowl them out. In the second innings we batted for about 25 overs, declared and then won with about three or four overs to spare," he said."That was an amazing game of cricket and one that sort of summed up that whole [Championship winning] season.

"We were just so determined to win that it didn't matter whether it was the last ball of the game or the first we were in the contest the whole time."

Nevin, 34, suffered a spate of injuries during his international years which to an extent limited his appearances to 37 one-day internationals. He made his international debut against Australia in March 2000 opening the innings and after scoring 74 at Eden Park he seemed the ideal opening partner for Nathan Astle. However, an injury at the end of the season denied him a chance to tour with New Zealand A in England and shortly before a national tour to Zimbabwe he suffered a lower abdominal hernia. Injuries and indifferent form hampered his prospects further. He played his last ODI in 2003.