England v Australia, 1st T20, Ageas Bowl

Finch eyes long-term spot in team after record knock

Andrew McGlashan at the Ageas Bowl

August 30, 2013

Comments: 11 | Text size: A | A

Aaron Finch blazed his way with 14 sixes, England v Australia, 1st T20, Ageas Bowl, August 29, 2013
Aaron Finch hit a record 14 sixes in his innings © PA Photos
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Aaron Finch is determined to build on his Twenty20 world-record knock of 156, which also included the most sixes in an innings, to ensure he secures a place at the top of the Australia's order for the long term rather than the sketchy relationship he has had with international cricket until now.

Finch made his Twenty20 debut against England in January 2011 but the Ageas Bowl match was only his seventh cap and he admitted that he had not made the most of his previous opportunities. He acknowledged that this was "just one of those days" where everything went his way, but was relieved to have supported the selectors' decision after his appearances during the previous Australian season had brought scores of 1, 7 and 4.

"I suppose being in and out of the side is never ideal. I felt like, last year, I let a couple of chances slip and it's always good to score runs and contribute to a win, especially in the first game of a new series," he said. "For my own confidence, and probably for the selectors' confidence in me, it's nice to get a good score and repay some of that faith."

And while his immediate focus is on the second Twenty20 international at Chester-le-Street on Saturday, Finch is hopeful that his scintillating display will allow him to stay for the five one-day internationals which follow. There are currently 18 players in the squad, but when the party was named, John Inverarity said that it would be trimmed, possibly to 15, for the ODIs, which means three players could be on their way after the weekend.

Initially, Finch would probably have been one of those expected to make way considering his seven ODIs have produced 105 runs at an average of 15 but the selectors may now find it difficult to put him straight back on a plane. "Hopefully I've staked a pretty good claim for the rest of the series and hopefully I can stay on," he said.

Finch said he was unaware of how close he came another new record for the fastest Twenty20 hundred, as he caught up with Richard Levi's 45-ball mark. For a matter of deliveries he took his foot off the pedal as, even for someone who had dispatched England's attack to all corners, the looming landmark started to prey on his mind.

"You could probably tell I started blocking the hell out of it around a hundred. I did get a little bit nervous but had no idea what the record was."

Stuart Broad, the England captain, refused to be too harsh on his bowlers on a day where 457 runs were scored in 40 overs and instead praised Finch for "special" innings.

"It was special striking from Finch, to hit 14 sixes in an innings. I think we can say we tried everything at him as well he just played everything fantastically well," Broad said. "In Twenty20 cricket that can happen. He made it his day in quite spectacular fashion, but I'm very proud of the guys who showed up in our side and fell just short of our highest international score. It would have been very easy to be 100 all out there and fallen down. The crowd would have gone unhappy.

"There're certainly 11 disappointed English guys but the crowd have had a fantastic day with 460-off runs. We're disappointed we haven't won, but it was a cracking game of Twenty20 cricket."

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by xylo on (August 30, 2013, 17:30 GMT)

ah. one knock in a T20 match, and talk about cementing a place in the ODI squad. Why stop at that? Maybe he should play in the next Ashes and be Warner's opening partner, no?

Let's see what happened to the guy who holds the record for the fastest hundred - Richard Levi. His place has been cemented in the bench forever.

Posted by BRUTALANALYST on (August 30, 2013, 16:55 GMT)

Incredible hitting but can't overlook the shocking bowling an lack of any tactics or counter attack from Broad.They just continued bowling length and donkey drop spinners to him for 20 overs like it was a training session or something. England really need to get their act together and sort out the short formats the selections/lack of insight/ or modern tactics is embarrassing.

Posted by TNAmarkFromIndia on (August 30, 2013, 10:38 GMT)

I was pumped when I came to know that Aaron Finch was bought by the Pune Warriors last season, because I knew what he was capable of. Unfortunately it was the same old story from the Pune Warriors, but Finch had a good season, going unsold in the auctions yet going on to become the 7th highest run scorer in the tournament.

I really hope Pune gets another team next year and Finch returns to play for Pune. He is an exciting cricketer who plays a dynamic brand of cricket that, on his day, is very entertaining.

Posted by Sagarneel on (August 30, 2013, 10:18 GMT)

Samdanh : What's the problem with the home crowd choosing not to support/ appreciate the home opposition team? Can you imagine Manchester United fans cheering after after Aresenal scoring in Old Trafford? Even then, as a regular visitor to the Eden Gardens, I would differ strongly with your opinion. It's either ignorance or bias that has led to your opinion.

Posted by   on (August 30, 2013, 10:06 GMT)

Wondering y Aussies gave too much build up for fawad Ahmed.. he looks very ordinary.not much variation..... thank god he was not there in the ashes squad. Englishmen are playing very easily... Am sure Aussies will pay the prize if he is selected for the one day tournament in India...

Posted by Samdanh on (August 30, 2013, 8:55 GMT)

I see no difference between crowds in Sub continent and England. Both do not appreciate 4s and 6s scored by opponents. There is dead silence when batsmen from opposition score 46/6s. Only when Opp batsmen gets out after a phenomenal score, do they (only England-not in sub-continent) stand up to applaud. More perhaps in Relief! In sub continent it is worse they will applaud their team's runs and wickets, never that of the opposition.

Posted by PFEL on (August 30, 2013, 7:09 GMT)

@Jesinthan, then you must never have seen a game in Australia. Most One Day games in Australia have much more support and noise for the VISITING team. Ever see India or Sri Lanka play in Aus, you wouldn't think there was a single Australian in the crowd lol.

Posted by   on (August 30, 2013, 6:30 GMT)

Thats the thing i was waiting for more than 200 days and i didn't sleep last night.Thank God Australia won hope they continue like this

Posted by Liquefierrrr on (August 30, 2013, 5:25 GMT)

@mansel - I can't comment on that as I was watching it with the sound muted (as it was 4 in the morning in my part of the world during his innings!), but what I could see was the large standing ovation the crowd gave Finch.

What a day for Finchy, I hope he can capitalise on this phenomenal feat - it would be even better if it bled into greater success in the longer formats (a field we are currently and obviously struggling).

A huge t20 encounter, 450-odd runs - epic.

Posted by Jesinthan on (August 30, 2013, 5:19 GMT)

@mansel It's an English crowd supporting England, what did you expect them to do? I don't recall ever seeing an Aussie crowd getting behind an opposition thrashing their team around unless it was Gayle.

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Andrew McGlashanClose
Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
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