Sharjah: After silencing the Pakhtoons fans with a peach of a delivery that bowled Shahid Afridi, Northern Warriors’ fast bowler Hardus Viljoen pumped his fists and roared like a lion.
Viljoen knew the wicket of Afridi, who had hit him for two straight sixes, changed the fortunes of the final.
“Yes me and Afridi had a couple of battles and he always came out on top,” said Viljoen.
“I played him in a semifinal last year in England. He smashed a 100 off 40 or 30 balls. And then in the knockout game again he came out on top. So I was just praying that, ‘please let me just get him out once’.
“And I was fortunate that tonight was my night. But hopefully there will be many more battles like that and I think that’s what the viewers want. They want to see the best batters in the world against the best bowlers that can put them under pressure,” said Viljoen who played a big role in Northern Warriors T10 triumph with 18 wickets in the second edition of the tournament.
But Viljoen, the player of the tournament, said he would not have taken so many wickets without the support from his team.
“At the end of the day, it was all about the team effort. I would not have been able to take the wickets if it wasn’t for the other guys who contributed,” he said.
“They just made it easier. I was fortunate to take the wickets in the tournament. So all credit goes to the team. I was just the lucky guy that got all the accolades.”
Viljoen then praised Warriors captain Darren Sammy.
“Darren never puts bowlers under pressure,” he said.
“He kept telling us to back our skills. He captained the team so well.”