Essex have signed Tim Southee, the New Zealand swing bowler, for the Friends Life t20 competition where he will link up with team-mate Scott Styris at Chelmsford.
Southee had an impressive World Cup where he took 18 wickets at 17.33 as New Zealand reached the semi final and has also shown his pedigree in Twenty20 cricket with 22 wickets in 19 internationals including 5 for 33 against Pakistan.
"We are delighted to be able to add Tim to the squad," Paul Grayson, the Essex coach, said. "His experience will be great for the team; he has had an excellent 18 months with New Zealand and so 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 the team, especially with his fellow international team-mate, Scott Styris, joining him as our overseas players for the Twenty20."
There had been a suggestion that Essex were keen on signing Hamid Hassan, the Afghanistan pace bowler, but they have now filled their two Twenty20 overseas slots. Southee's arrival is subject to New Zealand Cricket Broad approval and him obtaining a work visa