New Zealand's Tim Southee joins Essex Twenty20 side

Tim Southee
Southee plays for Northern Districts in the New Zealand State Championship

Essex have signed New Zealand bowler Tim Southee for this year's Twenty20 campaign, which begins in June.

The 22-year-old seamer has played 19 Twenty20 internationals for his country, taking 22 wickets with best figures of 5-18.

He will link-up with fellow Kiwi Scott Styris at Chelmsford, who he also plays with for IPL side Chennai Super Kings.

"We are delighted to be able to add Tim to the squad for the T20 campaign," said Essex head coach Paul Grayson.

"His experience will be great for the team, he has had an excellent 18 months with New Zealand and so it is going to be exciting to see him join up with the rest of the lads.

"He has shown on the biggest stage that he is great with the white ball, but is also able to give it a strike down the batting order.

"Tim will be a real asset to the team, especially with his fellow international team-mate, Scott Styris, joining him as our overseas players for the Twenty20."

Southee, who finished this year's World Cup with 18 wickets from eight matches, was initially set to join Essex earlier in the spring but the deal fell through.

In total he has scored 162 runs across 51 one-day internationals.

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