Hales destroys Durham in the NatWest T20 Blast

Alex Hales

Alex Hales

Hales could have equalled it with a six from the final ball he faced, but his mighty assault off James Weighell sliced high into the Nottingham sky and down into the waiting gloves of wicketkeeper Stuart Poynter.

"I knew there was a chance to go for the quickest T20 century of all-time and you don't get those opportunities very often", he said.

Brutal ball-striking from Alex Hales powered the Notts Outlaws to a convincing five-wicket victory over Durham Jets in the NatWest T20 Blast - and it nearly produced a world record. "I love batting at Trent Bridge, for me it is utter paradise, the wickets are great and there are some short boundaries, so I knew there was a chance of doing it", he added.

While the record for the fastest century eluded Hales, along with opening partner Riki Wessels, he managed to set up a record opening stand. They bettered the 105-0 that was posted by the Kolkata Knight Riders against the Royal Challengers Bangalore earlier this year in the Indian Premier League.

"It's a special feeling to play here and to get so many in the Power Play overs with Riki", Hales said.

Nottinghamshire's run chase began in freaky circumstances as Durham were forced to use three different bowlers to complete the second over of the innings.

But Wessels (41no from 34 balls) steadied to see the hosts reach their target of 184 with a massive 37 balls to spare, their innings run rate of 13.30 the second-highest of all time for scores of more than 150.

Usman Arshad was forced out of the attack after bowling two waist-high full tosses to start the over, with both signalled no-balls. The right-handed batsman spanked six fours and six sixes in 12 of the 18 deliveries in these overs.

In Saturday's other game, Northamptonshire's Ben Duckett also came close to three figures as his unbeaten 92 steered his side to victory over Worcestershire.

The England global, who scored an unbeaten 187 to help his county win the Royal London One-Day Cup final a month ago, clubbed nine fours and nine sixes in a stunning innings of 95, made from just 30 deliveries.

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