Alex Carey is targeting Sydney Thunder as the inform keeper-batsman eyes Twenty20 redemption in the IPL and for Australia.
Carey’s decisive ton (101, 62 balls) against Brisbane Heat on Thursday night in Adelaide propelled his unit from seventh to fourth spot.
It was a timely ton for Carey a day after being delisted by Ricky Ponting’s Delhi Capitals, and three months after losing the Australian T20 keeper’s gloves to Matt Wade.
“I felt really good and confident, try not to look too far ahead and pray for that big score,” said Carey who had notched two half centuries before his second BBL career ton against the Heat.
“At times we have had 50s and not really nailed the game.
“It was an important innings. It is a really tight tournament so really pleasing to help get that victory we were craving.”
Consecutive games against Sydney Thunder on Sunday and Monday at Adelaide Oval will determine the Strikers’ finals tilt after an inconsistent season illustrated by a 6-6 win-loss record.
“We understand the next two games are big ones and it would be nice to win the next one and see how we are placed. We have struggled to go back-to-back wins so hopefully we can build a bit of momentum at the right end of the tournament,” Carey said.
India’s Test hero against Australia, daring keeper Rishabh Pant, was preferred ahead of Carey who managed three matches for the Capitals last IPL season. Ponting’s franchise have made room for a back-up option ahead of next month’s IPL auction.
Strikers star Alex Carey celebrates his century against the Brisbane Heat. Picture: Mark Brake/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
“Those things you get a bit of an inkling for, didn’t play a lot of cricket, sat on the sidelines,” said Carey.
“It probably made sense to open that spot up for someone else. Hopefully there is an opportunity in this year’s (auction) and I was really grateful for Delhi and Punter for picking me up in the first place.”
Carey revealed he resumed the dynamic opening union against the Heat with Jake Weatherald that secured Adelaide’s inaugural BBL title three years ago more by accident than design. Carey and Weatherald are now locked at the top of the order with skipper Travis Head at No.3.
“We have tried everyone at the top of the order and through the middle and gone back to what worked a few years ago,” said Carey of the 2017-18 Strikers unit that had he, Weatherald and Head finish in the competition’s top-four run scorers.
English import Phil Salt had partnered Weatherald and former Test opener Matt Renshaw at the top of the order with limited success for the Strikers this season.
“Jake (36, 18 balls) was fantastic and took the pressure off me,” said Carey, who put on 66 on six overs against the Heat.
“Trav, a world class batter to come in at No.3, was pretty handy. It is probably the way we will go now but it wasn’t the plan.”
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