New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori has joined the ranks of test cricket's elite allrounders.
Vettori began the second test against Sri Lanka needing two wickets to become only the eighth player to complete the 300 wickets and 3000 runs double.
After Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to bat in today's second test in Colombo, the 30-year-old spinner claimed his 299th wicket with just his second ball of the morning, when opener Tharanga Paranavitana edged to Ross Taylor.
Kumar Sangakkara then became Vettori's 300th test victim when he was caught by Jacob Oram after lunch.
Vettori is the second New Zealander to reach the milestone following Sir Richard Hadlee.
"It's the proudest achievement of my career," Vettori said.
"I suppose for a spin bowler coming from New Zealand it's pleasing because we don't often play on wickets that suit spin bowling.
"A lot of the times I probably haven't played a major role," said Vettori, who has still taken five wickets in an innings 18 times and ten for the match on three occasions.
By dismissing Thilan Samaraweera during Sri Lanka's second innings at Galle last week, Vettori also became the game's most prolific left arm slow bowler, eclipsing the 297-wicket haul of England's Derek Underwood.
Vettori made his debut at Wellington against England on Waitangi Day 1997 as New Zealand's youngest ever test player at age 18.
Hadlee, at one time the world's leading test wicket taker, was subsequently followed to the 300/3000 double by Ian Botham, Kapil Dev, Imran Khan, Shane Warne, Shaun Pollock and most recently Chaminda Vaas.
Vettori's first test wicket was former England captain Nasser Hussain, caught by Bryan Young while his career highlights include a match analysis of 12 for 149 against Australia at Eden Park in March 2000.
After struggling to make an impact with the bat early in his career Vettori is now a genuine allrounder having scored three hundreds and 20 half centuries.
Vettori has amassed 3329 runs at 28.69 and despite typically batting at No 8 he has proved New Zealand's most reliable batsman -- this year alone he averages 54.83.
"Five or six years ago I was pretty embarrassed by my test batting record," said Vettori, who topped New Zealand's first test batting aggregates with 109.
"It was something I wanted to rectify and I've worked really hard on it. The results have probably exceeded my expectations."
Sourced from: The New Zealand HeraldReuse content