KEEPING LORD'S WORLD CLASS
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Former MCC Young Cricketer Alex Hales is intent on batting positively on his England Twenty20 debut in order to stay in contention for future selection.
Hales seems likely to open the batting against India in the one-off NatWest Twenty20 International at Old Trafford tonight, alongside Craig Kieswetter.
The 6’5” Nottinghamshire man had a superb Friends Life Twenty20 Cup campaign earlier this summer, finishing as the top scoring Englishman with 544 runs at a strike-rate of 146.63.
His hard hitting strokeplay has caught the attention of the England selectors and Hales believes he needs to play aggressively to keep his name in the international frame.
"I need to back my ability to play positively and score runs if I'm going to stay in contention for a place and that's my target going into tomorrow's game,” said Hales.
“The domestic T20 competition went well for me and I'm pleased to have been recognised for scoring runs in a winning team.
“England are the world's best Test team and the T20 world champions, so breaking into the set-up at any level is a big deal and I'm extremely proud.”
Hales spent a season as a YC in 2007, where his impressive performances caught the attention of Nottinghamshire.
The 22-year-old has since established himself in the Notts first team, picking up a County Championship winners medal in 2010.
2011 has been his breakthrough season though, with a series of consistent performances in all forms of the game earning him England Lions, and now full England, representation.
Hales is one of three inexperienced youngsters who could take the field for England tonight, with 20-year-old Jos Buttler of Somerset set for his international debut.
Durham all-rounder Ben Stokes, also 20, made his debut against Ireland in Dublin last week and is included in the squad for the five match One Day International series with India.
England T20 squad
Stuart Broad (Captain)
Craig Kieswetter (wicket-keeper)