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Shirin Sadikot in Johannesburg

This is for you, Watson

Sydney Sixers pacer Hazlewood dedicates CLT20 title to all-rounder Shane Watson

At the beginning of the CLT20 2012 final, between the Highveld Lions and the Sydney Sixers, the Wanderers’ head groundsman said the wicket reminded him of the one in the historic 434-run ODI between South Africa and Australia. But those who switched on their TV after the first innings, must have thought the match was being played on either a green top or a rank-turner.

However, the total of 121 amassed by the Highveld Lions was more reflective of their own indiscretion and the pressure put on them by the Sydney Sixers bowlers. They say a dot ball in a T20 game is dust of gold. Judging by that, the first innings of the CLT20 2012 final would be worth millions. Together, the Sixers’ bowlers bowled 64 run-less deliveries in an innings of 120 balls.

Josh Hazlewood’s share in it was 15. The tall fast bowler also picked up the wickets of Neil McKenzie, the Lions’ best batsman in the tournament, Quinton de Kock, their most promising young batsman and Jean Symes, the highest run-getter of the innings.

Hazlewood was, without doubt, Sydney Sixers’ best bowler in the biggest match of the tournament. The 21-year-old fast bowler spoke to clt20.com about the “perfect game” that his team played to lift the title.

How does it feel to be a CLT20 champion?

It’s unbelievable to be right out there at the top. After scraping through the semi-final, coming here and playing a perfect game – we couldn’t ask more off ourselves. Playing this sort of cricket against the top cricketers just helps you take your game to the next level.

You bowled 15 dot balls today and took three wickets. That doesn’t happen much in this format.

I’ve been told to bowl in the same way in every game and keep pitching the ball back-of-a-length. It has been working for me and there was obviously a bit in the wicket for me too.

Were you expecting to chase just 122 on this track?

I don’t think so. They got going in the middle over s a bit when Jean Symes scored pretty quickly. But I think 160 runs was a par score on this wicket. Michael Lumb just batted unbelievably well.

Who do you want to dedicate this win to?

We’d want to dedicate this win to Shane Watson. He’d be very disappointed to miss out on this but he took us as far as he could and contributed to this win.

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