Canterbury Kings captain Andrew Ellis has become the first player to reach 100 T20 wickets in the history of New Zealand's Burger King Super Smash this afternoon at Molyneux Park, Alexandra.
Ellis had headed into the match sitting on 99 wickets and reached three figures when he bowled Otago Volts star Jimmy Neesham with just his third delivery of the match, having come on as first change in the sixth over.
The wicket simultaneously brought up Ellis's 100th wicket for the Canterbury Kings. Ellis then added Mark Craig to his victims list before mopping up the tail with three wickets in the last over for figures of five for 16 — Ellis's third five-wicket bag in Burger King Super Smash history, and the third best all-time figures for the Kings after his own hauls of five for nine at Seddon Park two seasons ago and five for 14 in 2015/15, also at Seddon Park.
That meant Ellis also became the first man to claim three T20 five-wicket bags (or better) in the competition's history while the next highest domestic career wickets haul by any player (whether active or retired) is Wellington Firebirds veteran Luke Woodcock with 86.
Veteran all-rounder Ellis is also Canterbury's third highest all-time run-scorer for the Canterbury Kings with 891 runs heading into today's match, behind the retired Peter Fulton (1708) and former Canterbury Kings player Rob Nicol (973).
Volts captain Rob Nicol carried his bat for an unbeaten 65. PHOTOSPORT
Ellis ensured his Kings restricted the Volts to 144 for nine and his side went on to win the match with almost two overs to spare, Cam Fletcher smashing the winning boundary off Neil Wagner for a comfortable six-wicket victory.
Volts captain and opener Rob Nicol had earlier top-scored for the Otago hosts with his unbeaten 65 off just 58 balls, carrying his bat through the innings after having taken the option to bat first.
However, he would have only patchy support before the Kings got off to a solid start in reply, Cole McConchie and Fletcher both finishing with an unbeaten 31 after a match-winning 48-run stand off just 33 balls.
Completing an excellent day out for Ellis, the win saw his team overtake the Knights at the top of the table, edging them for top slot honours on superior net run rate.