The Sydney Thunder have re-signed England batsman Alex Hales for the 2020-21 Big Bash League in Australia.
Hales starred for the Thunder in the 2019-20 BBL. He was the franchise's leading run-scorer, with 576 in 17 innings.
The hard-hitting right-hander was key to the Nottinghamshire Outlaws' title-winning T20 Blast campaign recently. He also represented the Karachi Kings in the Pakistan Super League earlier this year.
“To get the chance to come back is exciting because we're at the start of something. I think the next two to three years is going to be very special for Sydney Thunder as a franchise. I really believe that, and to know I'm coming back to that means a lot,” said Hales.
Bond on Hales
Sydney Thunder coach Shane Bond, who is currently with the Mumbai Indians in the 2020 Indian Premier League, looked forward to working with Hales again.
“There's a whole range of reasons to be excited about Alex extending his contract – and they're exactly why we signed him in the first place. He is a great player who is available for the entire tournament,” added Bond.
“He played brilliantly for us last year, but he was brilliant on-and-off the field. He was hugely popular with the players and support staff – and that's how Alex is viewed wherever he plays.
“We have some very talented players in our squad, and it is important to have those professionals, like Alex, around so they can learn off them as well. Everyone in the team is looking forward to having him back, he's a brilliant bloke.”
The 31-year-old Hales has been capped 11 times at Test level. He has also played 70 ODIs and 60 T20Is. He has struck seven centuries in international cricket.
England Cricketers in the BBL
Other England stars will be involved in the 2020-21 BBL, too. Batsman Tom Banton is with the Brisbane Heat. Seamer Tom Curran is with the Sydney Sixers. Banton and Curran are part of the Rajasthan Royals and Knight Riders squad in the IPL 2020.
This BBL is scheduled to start on 3 December 2020. Whether the tournament is played without spectators as a preventative measure against the spread of the coronavirus pandemic remains in the balance.