Trent Bridge, Jun 25: Alex Hales' highest individual T20 score powers England to an exciting win to beat West Indies by seven wickets in the one-off Twenty20 international between the two sides at Trent Bridge, Nottingham on Sunday.
Scorecard: Only T20; England Vs West Indies
Looks like the youngster has utilised the opportunity that he got post Kevin Pietersen's retirement from limited overs format, as he played a fabulous innings to get to 99, the highest individual T20 score by an English batsman to guide England to an easy seven wicket win against Windies on Sunday.
"It is an opportunity," Hales said.
"I'm happy with the way I played today but there's still a lot of cricket this season for Notts and hopefully I can keep myself in the frame for the next few games. It's very mixed emotions to have not made the hundred. He (Rampaul) bowled the ball exactly where I wanted. I just missed it but I'm very happy with the 99 and for England to get the win," said Hales after the match against Windies.
Chasing a challenging target of 173 off 20 overs, Alex Hales with Ravi Bopara played a fantastic knock as their partnership was worth 159 runs for the second wicket.
"We felt 170 was around par on this wicket and I thought Ravi batted exceptionally well and set the game up nicely. Ravi's a great guy to bat with," added Hales after both men were out in the final over before Morgan struck the winning runs.
Hales' 99 came off just 68 balls which included six boundaries and 4 sixes. The youngster stormed into the English side with an amazing knock of 99 and won the match after Windies posted a challenging 172/4 in 20 overs having elected to bat.
Having missing out on the century, the 23 year old buried his head in his hands as Jonny Bairstow had to console him after having missed out on the century. Though he was excited about winning the match for his country, after being yorked by Ravi Rampaul's delivery on 99, the batsman couldn't control his disappointment as he could have become the only seventh batsman to have scored a T20 century.
"I was thrilled but gutted at the same time," said the tall 23-year-old right-hander from north London, who could conceivably have been preparing for Wimbledon this week, having hinted at the ability to emulate his grandfather Dennis as a boy.
"If I could have chosen somewhere for him to bowl, it would have been there. But when it's kicked in, it's the highlight of my career so far, without a doubt."
Hales, has so far played 5 T20 Internationals and 49 domestic T20s and has got a highest score of 99 with an average of 43.50 and 27.82 respectively. Out of the five T20Is, Hales has already hit two half centuries. He has also played 44 first class matches and scored 2739 runs, which include four hundreds and 19 half centuries.
With the sporting talent running in his genes, the 23 year old Hales has created an impact very early in his career and might cement his place in the national side soon. Hales is indeed a great future prospect for England especially after Pietersen's retirement created a void in the team.