Central Stags and BLACKCAPS allrounder Doug Bracewell has become just the 16th New Zealand first-class cricketer to take 400 first-class wickets and score 4,000 first-class runs in his career.
Bracewell entered the 2023/24 summer on Labour Weekend with 398 first-class career wickets as the Stags began their Plunket Shield season away against the Auckland Aces.
After piling on a 500-plus total, the team had headed into the field on Day Two and, by the close of play, Bracewell had his 399th victim, former teammate George Worker falling caught behind.
The penultimate morning at Kennards Hire Community Oval dawned with the Stags needing to capitalise on their good start, but at the same time a resilient partnership was brewing for their hosts between opening batter Sean Solia (81) and number seven Finn Allen (79).
The duo put on 59 for the sixth wicket before left-armer Ray Toole rocked back Solia's middle stump. Allen then formed a new stand with young allrounder Simon Keene that reached 64 before the milestone wicket for Bracewell not only delivered some special stats, but wrested back control for his team - setting up an innings victory later that afternoon in the first round of the season's national championship.
Bracewell now joins the ilk of Sir Richard Hadlee, Daniel Vettori, and his own uncle, John Bracewell, on the elite Kiwi allrounder list over the past century and a half of first-class cricket in New Zealand. He is just the eighth pace bowler to join that list.
His Stags captain Greg Hay said, “It’s a phenomenal effort. Dougie’s just the model of consistency.
"I think he’s played 15 seasons for us now, and he’s just done it season after season so he’s Mr. Reliable and just a dream for a captain to have in the side.”
Bracewell celebrates a Test wicket against Sri Lanka at the Cello Basin Reserve earlier this year | PHOTOSPORT
A member of one of the greatest families in New Zealand Cricket history, more than half of Bracewell's wickets have come with the Stags crest on his chest since his 2008/09 debut.
The balance has come from 28 Tests for the BLACKCAPS, as well as County appearances for Northamptonshire and Essex and first-class matches for NZ A and other New Zealand sides.
His 401 wickets in 130 matches include seven bags for the Stags and four for national teams, while his 4,355 runs include two Central Stags centuries and one for New Zealand A.
NEW ZEALAND CRICKETERS WITH THE 400/4000 DOUBLE
Players who have played first-class cricket domestically in an NZC season
Sir Richard Hadlee
John R. Reid
* spin bowler
Plunket Shield 2023/24 Round 1
- Central Stags defeated Auckland Aces
- Northern Districts defeated Otago Volts
- Wellington Firebirds defeated Canterbury