BBL - Sixers v Thunder
ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 22: Alex Hales of the Thunder hits four during the Big Bash League match between the Sydney Sixers and the Sydney Thunder at Adelaide Oval, on January 22, 2021, in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Mark Brake/Getty Images)

One of the stars of the Big Bash in the 2020-21 season has been Sydney Thunder opener Alex Hales. The Englishman has proved he is one of the most explosive opening batsmen in the T20 format of the game.

Hales hit 543 runs during the tournament, the most by any player ahead of the final of the competition. His strike-rate was an impressive 161.61, something which was helped by 54 fours and 30 sixes.

 

No other player in the Big Bash this season reached 500 runs, which goes to show how consistent the Sydney player has been. His highest score of the tournament was a knock of 110 which came against the Sydney Sixers. He formed an excellent partnership with Usman Khawaja, but it was Hales who stood out from Thunder’s top-class batting line-up.

The 32-year-old has featured in all three formats of the game for England. He has played 60 T20 internationals and in those he has scored over a total of 1600 runs for his country. Given the form he is in, many pundits in the sport are calling upon the right-hander to be given a chance again.

Last Recall March 2019

Hales’ last appearance for England came back in March 2019 in a T20 international against West Indies. He was not included in the World Cup squad which won the tournament on home soil in 2019.

Competition for places in England’s limited-overs teams has been strong over the last couple of years. The team have had a lot of success at home and away which has meant the selectors have remained loyal with the players who have done well.

With the T20 World Cup coming up later this year, England may not be able to ignore Hales any longer. England are among the favourites with odds of 4.50 in the cricket betting for the tournament in India. Their chances would be boosted further with Hales in their batting line-up.

Hales has a lot of experience of playing in the sub-continent so he will be very familiar with the wickets in India later this year. In 2018, he featured for the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL, replacing the injured David Warner.

Hales Should Cash In During 2021 IPL

As a free agent, Hales is expected to be in the auction for the IPL in 2021 and he could end up as one of the highest-paid players in the league. There are a number of franchises in the IPL who are on the lookout for an opening batsman and given what he has achieved this season in the Big Bash in Australia, they will have Hales on their shortlist.

The opportunity to play in the IPL should enhance his chances of a return to the England set-up. If he does well in the tournament this year, it will be hard for the selectors to continue to ignore him. England are currently touring India as part of their winter series. They will face India in five T20 internationals and three one-day matches in what will be their last action until their programme which begins in June.