Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Hales the man for England

Since he has come into the England fold, Alex Hales has been brilliant at the top of the order and will be the key to success at the Twenty20 World Cup in Sri Lanka this month.

Stuart Broad’s men start their campaign on Friday with what should be a formality of a fixture against Afghanistan. However, you always need to get off to a good start and the 23-year-old Nottinghamshire
batsman looks like an effective opener at the top of England’s order.

With Somerset’s Craig Kieswetter struggling for the kind of form that helped win the Three Lions the cup two years ago in the Caribbean, the onus will fall on other players such as Hales and Jos Buttler to take command of an England team very much in transition and considered outsiders for the tournament in T20 cricket betting markets.

Hales scored an impressive 52 in England’s most recent warm-up victory over Australia, which takes his international T20 average to 39.20 after just seven games with an impressive strike rate of 122.50. It is that kind of impetus at the top of the order which England will need if they are to defend their trophy in the shortest format of the game.

With Buttler showing his brilliance lower down the order in England’s victory over South Africa at Birmingham – scoring a crafty 32 of just 10 balls – it could be the youth and freshness of Hales and Buttler which allows the old guard to defend their trophy. Indeed the pair are among the favourites in the England betting to finish as the team’s top run scorer.

Buttler’s shot selection and willingness to play the extraordinary will stand him in good stead on the subcontinent’s turning wickets. Backed up by Hales at the top of the order, with Eoin Morgan, Jonny Bairstow and Luke Wright top T20 batsmen, England have the batting to win the World T20.

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