'I never thought I'd play in a World Cup again'- Alex Hales is relishing playing for England after his heroics against India
Alex Hales was named the player of the match for his breathtaking assault that propelled his side to the final.
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The pre-tournament favourites England lived up to their tag after subjecting India to a humiliating ten-wicket defeat in Adelaide in the second semi-final. It was the opening pair of Jos Buttler and Alex Hales that put the Indian bowlers to the sword during their record-breaking partnership. Hales was named the player of the match for his breathtaking assault and expressed his delight in representing the country in a World Cup.
The tall powerful opening batter was one of the mainstays of the English white-ball team before a 'failed drug test' in the lead-up to the 2019 World Cup sent his career into a downward spiral. Hales was lost into anonymity for the last three years only to be called up to the T20 World Cup after the unfortunate injury to Jonny Bairstow.
The Englishman has a wealth of experience batting in Australian conditions, being the leading run scorer in BBL 2020-21. He put those outings to great use in the semi-final clash, smacking unbeaten 86 runs off just 47 deliveries. He was delighted by his performance in the crunch encounter and stated that he never believed he would represent the side in World Cup matches again after the debacle of 2019.
"A huge occasion, really happy with the way I played. I think this is one of the best grounds to bat in in the world. Great value to hit your shots with the short square boundaries, and a ground I have good memories at. I never thought I'd play in a World Cup again, and to get a chance is a special feeling. It's a country I love playing in. Jos was unbelievable out there," Hales said after his match-winning innings against India.
Hales and Buttler register a record-setting partnership against India
Alex Hales and Jos Buttler completed one of the most one-sided run chases in the history of the T20 World Cups, racing past India's target of 169 runs without losing a wicket and with four overs to spare. Their 170-run stand for the opening wicket is also the highest partnership in a World Cup match.
England will now square up against Pakistan in the final at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) in a repeat of the 1992 World Cup final between the two sides at the same venue.