The date is Friday 15 May, 2015. The opponent, Birmingham Bears. 

The Sky cameras are in town for the opening of the 2015 NatWest T20 Blast and with just 142 needed to start with a win, Alex Hales and Riki Wessels step out to begin their work.

Adding 42 for the first wicket inside 4.1 overs, the Outlaws are off to a rapid start. Hales has played a passenger role thus far but has surpassed David Hussey to become the Club’s second leading run scorer in the format behind Samit Patel.

He ends the powerplay with a couple of boundaries, a taster of what is to follow, but his 23 off 16 balls is - by comparison to some of his performances - somewhat pedestrian. 

At the halfway mark, with the score on 78-1, the large Friday night crowd had seen little to prepare them for what was about to be unleashed.

The loss of Brendan Taylor two balls later couldn’t stop it. The Warwickshire bowlers couldn’t stop it.

From the fourth ball of the 11th over, all hell broke loose:

11.4: Boyd Rankin runs in and delivers a ball right where a batsman of Hales’ calibre might like it. It's oft described as in ‘the slot’. The right-hander launches it high into the Hound Road stand. The crowd are awakened.

11:5: A little shorter from Rankin but a instinctive pick-up over the leg-side takes it way out of reach for the fielder for six more.

11:6: As above. But this time even further. 

12:2: Samit Patel shows all his experience to get Hales back on strike. Pace? Spin? Doesn’t seem to matter to Hales. He tracks Ateeq Javid's off-spin, using his long levers to fire the ball straight back over the bowler’s head. It's fair to say the crowd are now rocking. 

12:3: Javid tries to fire it in flatter, Hales is up to the task and unfurls a rocket of a sweep which barely gets 10 feet off the floor, but still carries for six.

12:4: Does it really matter where Javid bowls it at this point? It was inevitable wasn’t it? Just misses the blockhole, Hales hammers it over deep mid-on. He stands back and admires the shot, twizzles the bat in his hand and is congratulated by Patel for the remarkable feat.


Six deliveries faced, six times the ropes are cleared.

All of a sudden the Outlaws require just 21 to win. which they get at a canter. Hales finishes with a 43-ball 86*, adding a further six for good measure to end with eight to his name.

The hitting evoked memories of the great Sir Garfield Sobers, who became the first man to hit six sixes in a single over off Malcolm Nash against Glamorgan on August 31 1968. 

Hales' knock was the likes of which the great man would have been proud. 

“It just clicked on the night for me,” said Hales.

“I hadn’t had the quickest start but I felt in good touch. Then that first one came out of the middle of the bat off Boyd and it went off from there.

“I hit the next two sweetly and then had a ball off, but I’ve always enjoyed facing the spinners and he bowled me three balls I felt I could hit.

“To do it in front of home support and really get them going on the opening night made the feeling all the more special.”

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There are four further opportunities to catch the Outlaws in T20 action at Trent Bridge this summer, with the next home game under the lights against Birmingham Bears on this coming Friday 2 August.

Secure your seats….