World Cup-winning cricketer Ben Stokes made a heartfelt visit to the hospital bed of the former Aberdeenshire professional Solo Nqweni.
Mr Nqweni, 26, was taken ill in the middle of July and subsequently diagnosed with Guillain-Barre syndrome – a life-threatening rapid-onset muscle weakness condition – which led to him being rushed into intensive care at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.
Five months later, he has made significant progress and was visibly buoyed by meeting Mr Stokes, who was in the city to attend the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award ceremony at the P&J Live.
Thanks so much @benstokes38 for popping in to see Solo, you will never know how much today has meant to Solo and his family. Thanks to @AberdeenshireCC for their continued support of this wonderful young man. ✌? https://t.co/VszZyFvxau
— WSX Cricket (@WSXcricket) December 14, 2019
Mr Nqweni revealed that he had been watching England take on New Zealand in the World Cup final just a few hours before his condition significantly deteriorated.
In a video of the encounter posted online, Mr Nqweni said: “I thought it was fatigue, because I had been playing the day before. I spent an hour with the boys afterwards and then I went home.
“I was a bit dehydrated, when I woke up the next day and my grip wasn’t good, so I took a nap, then when I woke up again. My legs felt wobbly and I had another nap.
“I remember watching the cricket – I think it was the World Cup final – and I know it had a dramatic finish…”, at which point he and the England star shared a laugh.
WSX Cricket, the organisation which brings foreign professionals to Britain to play for various clubs, later posted on social media about Mr Stokes’ visit to the hospital.
The message said: “Thanks so much, Ben, for popping in to see Solo, you will never know how much today has meant to Solo and his family.
“Thanks also to Aberdeenshire CC for their continued support of this wonderful young man.”
Scotland coach, Shane Burger, who is currently with the national team abroad, said the video was “incredible” and paid tribute to Mr Stokes.
He added that he plans to visit Mr Nqweni in the New Year.
Speaking ahead of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards, Mr Stokes said it was an “eye-opening experience”.
Watch the full interview above.