The ongoing test match series has highlighted the latest best pairing of Trent Boult and Tim Southee who together got an overwhelming figure of 14 for 206 as they ripped out outstanding batting strategy of India and landing New-Zealand towards a spectacular victory in Wellington. The number was convincing for both the bowlers as they have returned from a low phase of their career, Boult returned to the game after recovering from an injury while Southee’s previous performances in test matches were not so impressive. Their pairing proved a boon for New Zealand in white-ball cricket. As a bowling combination, they rival some of the greatest new-ball pairs in Test cricket. In innings when the two bowlers have shared the first new ball, Boult and Southee have combined to take a total of 426 wickets, which is third in the all-time list. The only pairs with a higher tally are James Anderson-Stuart Broad and Wasim Akram-Waqar Younis
The way both the enthusiastic bowlers complement each other is extra-ordinary as their number of wickets both have fetched is almost the same. Boult has contributed 214 at 26.25 average while Southee has fetched 212 wickets at 26.77, this is what we call a perfect match! There is hardly anything to separate the two, as is the case with their overall numbers. This Wellington returns would also be gratifying to the pair because their recent statistics hadn’t been so hot. In the last five Tests they had played together before this one, they had fetched 33 wickets for 1017 runs – that’s an average of 6.5 wickets per Test and nearly 31 runs per wicket. However in front of India, their performance was exceptional, the way Boult made a powerpack comeback in the second innings was mind-blowing! The combined haul of 14 for 206 is their fifth-best, in the 54 Tests, they have played together. In fact, they were only one wicket away from equalling their best tally in a game.
History shows that New Zealand’s performance was exemplary in the tests where the pair of Boult & Southee played together as compared to the tests where either one or neither has played. When Boult-Southee duo played New Zealand was able to grab a convincing 28 win & 15 loss matches records as compared to 3 win and 9 lost records when either Boult or Southee has played and 0 wins and 3 loss record when neither Boult or Southee Played.
These instances clearly indicate that if New-Zealand wants to show certain out of the world performances in future tests then they should definitely keep Boult-Southee pair together as their Jodi is proven to be a ‘Ram-Lakhan Jodi’ when bowler’s pairing is considered!