Batters with the firepower to explode at the T20 World Cup
We’re looking at hitters with strike rates that can turn a game around in the span of a few balls at the T20 World Cup.
Race volume and scoring consistency are hugely important to the success of the T20, and players who can deliver both naturally rank high on the MRF Tires ICC Player Rankings.
But, in a major tournament, teams also need some of their top-notch scores to come at a rapid pace – an average of 40 with a strike rate of 130 only succeeds at elite level if there are points. rapids marked at the other end.
And the 2022 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup is full of such quick hitters, hitters capable of putting games beyond the opposition’s reach in little more than the blink of an eye.
Here, we review the most explosive hitters expected to feature in the tournament, based on their career (at the time of writing) hitting rates in the T20Is.
T20I strike rate: 176.81
India’s late-blooming mid-tier hitter is currently in a league of its own when it comes to scoring rate.
A player with all the shots, SKY scored at a stunning rate of 176.81 in his 34 T20I appearances.
But what makes the 32-year-old so remarkable, and what sets him apart from most others on this list, is that he manages to combine that scoring pace with an impressive 38.70 average.
T20I strike rate: 163.65
The versatile New Zealander is one of the most destructive finishers in the world. His 635 career runs in the T20Is hit a 163.65 strike rate in 53 games.
And we know Neesham can deliver that power on the big stage too – it was his remarkable 27-from-11 onslaught that helped the Kiwis stun England in the 2021 T20 World Cup semi-finals.
T20I strike rate: 161.72
Another New Zealander is next, but in a very different role. Relative newcomer Finn Allen is most often used as an aggressive opening hitter, and his 469 T20I runs in 18 games to date have come at a blistering pace.
The 23-year-old is looking for limits and maximums from the start and will be aiming for fast starts for the Kiwis in the Super 12 stage.
T20I strike rate: 160.08
One of the most sought-after franchise players in the world, Tim David’s explosive performances in the domestic leagues and for Singapore saw him take an unusual route to the Australian national team.
Interestingly, in his short Australian international career so far, his finishing role has seen his strike rate increase from his goal scoring pace with Singapore, to 165.95.
T20I strike rate: 155.51
A spell in the international wilderness is over for Evin Lewis, with the big southpaw set to feature in the West Indies top order following his recall.
Lewis is averaging more than two sixes per set and has hit more highs than he has four for the West Indies. He’ll be looking to spice up the stands in Australia, and with a T20I career strike rate of 155.51, you’d be brave to bet against him.
T20I strike rate: 152.87
South Africa has a very powerful ranking and Rilee Rossouw is one of the many players who can accelerate quickly on the scoreboard.
The 33-year-old has only appeared in 21 T20 international matches but in those matches he managed 558 points at an average of 37.20 and with a strike rate of 152.87. These are world class numbers in anyone’s book.
Strike rate T20I: 151.16
The Proteas have another potential tournament star at the top of their batting lineup in the form of Aiden Markram.
The hugely talented right-hander also had a brilliant start to his T20I career, racking up 780 runs in 26 matches. That means his average is over 40, but with those runs at an impressive pace, 151.16 runs per 100 balls.
Strike rate T20I: 150.40
The Australian mid-order star was one of the most dangerous T20 hitters in the world for most of the decade.
Still, his high volume of appearances for Australia (94 T20Is) did not lead to a decrease in strike rate, with Maxwell continuing to roll at 150.40 points per 100 balls over his career.
If the hosts are to defend their title, Maxwell will surely play a huge role.
No other hitter expected to appear at the tournament boasts a career strike rate of 150 or more, but there are a number of global stars operating in the 140s who can light up the tournament.
India in shape Hardik Pandya is one of those standout finishers, with a strike rate of 148.49, and his compatriot Dinesh Karthik (146.40) is also a lower order hitter to be feared.
South Africa’s mighty batting unit has a few other dangerously fast scorers among them, with Heinrich Klaasen (147.61) and David Miller (145.49) the most notable.
England’s absence from the above list is a bit striking considering the depth of their batting formation. The current England striker with the highest career strike rate is versatile Moeen Ali, who hit 147.31 in 56 innings. And since they’ve been used more frequently in the middle order, those numbers have gone up, with Moeen recording an astonishing strike rate of 156.99 over the past two years.
England captain Joe Buttler has 2,377 career T20I runs at 144.23 overall and, like Moeen, those numbers have been rising over the past two years; meanwhile, his rate was significantly higher, at 151.13 over 26 innings.