Anrich Nortje breaks record at T20 World Cup: 'It's been a while since I've had those figures'

Anrich Nortje breaks record at T20 World Cup: 'It's been a while since I've had those figures'

Fast bowler Anrich Nortje was happy to contribute to the team after the Proteas opened their T20 World Cup campaign with six-wicket win over Sri Lanka in New York.

Nortje made a welcome return to form as he recorded remarkable figures of 4-7 in four overs - the best by a Proteas bowler at a T20 World Cup - as Sri Lanka could only muster a total of 77 all out, their lowest in T20 internationals.

The Proteas then had a few shaky moments in the run-chase, losing four wickets on what was tough pitch in the first ever T20 international played at the venue.

READ: Bowlers power Proteas to victory in T20 World Cup opener against Sri Lanka

Nortje was out of the game for six months due to a stress fracture and had initially struggled for form in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in the build-up to the global tournament.

The paceman said at the post-match presentation: "It's been a while since I've had those figures. Just happy to have pulled it off for the team.

"We didn't know what to expect from the pitch, we'd heard one or two rumours about being up and down.

"There were probably a few balls that I wanted a little bit differently, they weren't 100% executed, but yeah, very happy to get the results.

"I think the biggest thing is just to get the results for the team, it's not about personal performances. To get a career-best is nice, but it doesn't really matter at the end of the day unless the team is winning. So, I'm very happy for the team as well. I think every bowler bowled really well."

The fast bowler also defended the surface at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium after it was suggested that the low-scoring match was not a fair contest between bat and ball.

The Proteas still have two matches in New York, against Netherlands and Bangladesh, before moving to the West Indies for the remainder of the competition.

"It doesn't always mean, correct me if I'm wrong, there needs to be 20 sixes in a game to make it entertaining," Nortje said at the post-match press-conference.

"There's still a lot of strategy that goes into the game. There's a lot of skill that goes into the game, whether it's sixes or fast bowlers or spinners, however it might be.

"So, I thought the game was a brilliant game. It was still a close game at the end of the day, another wicket or two, and things might have been different. We might have been in a little bit more trouble."

He added: "It is great to be in New York. It's great to be playing cricket in the US andâ¦we're excited for what's to come. We've enjoyed the facilities; we've enjoyed the sort of getting around exploring as well. So, yeah, it's brilliant and we are enjoying it."

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