Friends Life t20: David Willey revels in Northants' trophy glory

Last Updated: 18/08/13 10:38am

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David Willey: Sensational performance as Northants won the Friends Life t20 final.

David Willey: Sensational performance as Northants won the Friends Life t20 final.

Sky Bet

Northamptonshire all-rounder David Willey admitted he had turned in a "once in a lifetime" performance as he starred with bat and ball as they won the Friends Life t20 title.

Willey smashed 60 from 27 balls before taking 4-9 in his bowling spell, with his last three wickets closing out the match with a hat-trick as Northants defeated Surrey by 102 runs in the final at Edgbaston.

The victory marked the county's first trophy success since 1992, when they beat Leicestershire in the final of the Natwest Bank Trophy.

"I'm really pleased. To be honest I didn't think we'd won and I thought there was another wicket needed," he told Sky Sports.

"This is once in a lifetime. I will probably never play like this again so I should probably quit while I'm ahead.

Fantastic

"The guys are playing exceptional cricket, we enjoy each other's company and we are all contributing."

Steelbacks skipper Alex Wakely was quick to praise Willey, who has been chosen in the England Lions squad for their three one-day matches against Bangladesh A later this month.

"He's been fantastic for us all season," Wakely said.

"He's got his Lions call-up next week. He has thoroughly deserved that so if he keeps performing like that who knows where he can get.

"It will surprise me if that guy's not playing for England, especially in white ball cricket, within too long."

Northamptonshire had won just three of their previous 22 Twenty20 matches before this season and only one last year and Wakely admitted they had to work hard to turn their form around in the competition.

"We were at rock bottom last year," he said.

"We almost started from scratch. We had a heart-to-heart at the end of last year; a lot of people were disappointed with the way we were playing our

cricket.

"We sat down, we worked hard and we're reaping the rewards this year. If you'd have told me we'd win finals day I wouldn't have believed you.

"To actually get to finals day and to win something as a club is just an unbelievable feeling."

Outstanding

In contrast, Surrey captain Vikram Solanki was left disappointed but admitted Northants had deserved to win, after seeing his side bowled out for 92 as they chased an unlikely victory target of 195 in a match restricted to 18 overs a side because of rain.

"They were too good," he said.

"For them to come out in the manner they did and bat in that fashion against a very good attack that has been consistently good throughout our campaign is quite outstanding.

"Then, having posted the total they did, it was always going to be difficult for us."

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