Although Riki was born in Australia, he grew up in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, due to his father playing for the South Africa cricket team, having previously played for Australia when South Africa were banned from Test Cricket. Being born into a cricketing family, his career path was obvious from the beginning and when he was 18 he made the decision to leave his family behind in pursuit of his own International cricket career in the UK.
In 2004, Riki joined the staff at Northamptonshire county cricket club where he impressed in the second eleven producing several noticeable scores. This led to him being selected for the MCC in 2004 and in the first team of Nottinghamshire for the start of the 2011 season. In this year, he established himself as a first class player, and scored his first century at the age of 19 against Somerset. In 2007, he became qualified to play for England which is what he has wanted to do from an early age. Being a keen Hockey player (playing for Northampton Lions and the University of Northampton teams) helps him to play a variety of shots including the Reverse sweep for which he is well known. He is a fairly attacking player especially in one day cricket, where he has one century to date. On 7 November, Wessels signed a new contract extension along with fellow Northamptonshire wicket keeperNiall O'Brien, keeping Riki at the club until 2010.