Cricket

Alex Hales hoping Hurricanes form can help England chances

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Such is the life of the modern day cricketer that England and Nottinghamshire’s Alex Hales has no time to dwell on his Sri Lanka tour as he has immediately flown to Australia to take up his place with the Hobart Hurricanes in the new season of their domestic Twenty20 tournament, the Big Bash League.

Hales endured a frustrating tour of Sri Lanka where opportunities were at a premium and, when he was given a chance, he failed to grasp it with both hands. During the seven-match series he batted on just three occasions, scoring 34 runs at an average of just over 11. They were hardly stats to write home about nor force the hand of the selectors.

The Nottinghamshire big-hitter will now be on tenterhooks as he waits for the England selectors to announce their final 15-man World Cup squad for the tournament in Australia and New Zealand during February and March.

Time running out

The final squad has to be announced by January 7, leaving very little time for players to change the mind of the selectors, who will no doubt have a very good idea as to what their final squad already is.

With calls for England skipper Alastair Cook to stand down, and also lose his place in the side, Hales looks to be the very type of opening batsman that a dynamic ODI side requires.

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Proven at T20 level

He has already proven with England before that he is capable of taking international T20 bowling attacks apart. Perhaps it is now time for Hales to be given a longer run in the ODI side in order to prove he has a long-term future at this level. 

Hales is in an enviable position where he can still influence the selectors. However, it could go either way depending on his impact with Hobart.

With the Hurricanes Hales will have three games to impress the England selectors, before January 7, in conditions very similar to those that will be experienced in the World Cup. However, he will need to hit the ground running and cannot afford a poor run of form.

Star-studded squad

The Hurricanes have a star-studded side including Darren Sammy, George Bailey and Travis Birt but Hales will be the one to watch during his cameo appearances for the side.

Originally Hales would have signed for the Hurricanes in the hope of playing for the whole of the Big Bash League but his summer form in England has led to his call-up to the England ODI side, limiting his games.

If picked for the World Cup squad he will then be part of the team who take on Australia and India in a tri-series warm-up tournament beginning on the 16th January, again limiting his time with Hobart.

A few chances left

Will Hales make the final World Cup squad or will he remain with the Hobart Hurricanes for the rest of their Big Bash season?

He certainly has a lot to offer England as an opener and could make a huge impact on a World Cup but he still needs to prove his worth in the 50-over format. His immediate destiny is in his own hands.

Alex Hales chances to impress before January 7:

23 Dec 2014 v Sydney Sixers
31 Dec 2014 v Adelaide Strikers
2 Jan 2015 v Brisbane Heat

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Topics:
England cricket
ODI World Cup
Sri Lanka cricket
Cricket
Australia cricket

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