Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting has called for Hobart Hurricanes batter Tim David to earn a call-up to the national T20 squad, claiming he is “the sort of player that can win you a World Cup”.
David, who has represented Singapore in 14 T20 internationals, has been one of the most destructive short-format cricketers over the past couple of years, plying his trade in several T20 domestic tournaments including the Big Bash League, Pakistan Super League and Caribbean Premier League.
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The 26-year-old, who was born in Singapore but raised in Western Australia, was purchased by the Mumbai Indians for a whopping AU$1.53 million at this year’s IPL auction, earning larger bids than Australian superstars Pat Cummins, David Warner and Josh Hazlewood.
David scored 186 runs for Mumbai this year, averaging 37.20 with the bat at a strike rate of 216.27 — nobody scored more IPL runs in 2022 at a better strike rate. He became just the third cricketer to finish an IPL campaign with more than 100 runs and a strike rate greater than 200, joining short-format legends Brendon McCullum and Andre Russell.
This year, the T20 globetrotter has scored 1002 runs at an incredible strike rate of 183.51, which ranks third globally.
David’s ability to clear the boundary rope without soaking up deliveries at the crease distinguishes him from the rest of the competition.
With a T20 World Cup on the horizon, he has done more than enough to push his case for a national call-up.
The prospect of David and Australian stalwart Glenn Maxwell joining forces in the middle-order is a mouth-watering prospect for any cricket fan.
Speaking to reporters on Friday morning, Ponting backed David to flourish in Australian colours, comparing the uncapped cricketer to a former teammate.
“The way he’s transformed his game over the last couple of years is quite remarkable,” the newly-appointed Hobart Hurricanes Head of Strategy said.
“It was only a couple of seasons ago that he was struggling to get a game in the Perth Scorchers line-up. It’s amazing what happens to players when they come to the Hurricanes, how much they improve.
“He’s been incredible in almost every tournament that he’s played around the world in the last 12-18 months.
“He’s obviously one player that we’re extremely excited about. I think there’s a chance for him to hopefully take on a bit more responsibility in the batting line-up with the Hurricanes this season as well, because of his consistency and his match-winning ability. We don’t want to waste that; we don’t want to have him sitting on the sidelines too long.
“He’s a very good, very dangerous T20 player that I’m sure the Australian selectors are thinking long and hard about for the T20 World Cup in a couple of months.
“If I was a selector, I would love to have someone like that in my team … he’s an out-and-out match-winner. He’s the sort of player that can actually win you a World Cup.
“He actually reminds me a bit of Andrew Symonds back in the 2003 World Cup. You know that if you get him in and give him an opportunity that they’re a chance of winning the tournament for you.
“I know there’s some other great world-quality players in the middle order for Australia, but probably none of them boasts a resume as good as Tim’s over the last two years.”
Most T20 runs in 2022
1033 – Shan Masood (PAK)
1012 – Alex Hales (ENG)
1002 – Tim David (AUS)
932 – Will Jacks (ENG)
After David went on a trademark rampage for Lancashire in the T20 Blast in May, smashing 60 off just 25 balls at Old Trafford, Australian white-ball captain Aaron Finch conceded he was on the verge of national selection.
“He’s been in fantastic form for a while now,” Finch told reporters at the time.
“The back end of the IPL was fantastic for him. He was at his brutal best. The ability to hit from ball one is a pretty rare skill, and he’s done that plenty of times now.
“Him being so consistent, that’s something we will definitely look at over the next little while.”
Speaking ahead of Lancashire‘s semi-final against Yorkshire, David said he’d love the opportunity to help Australia defend its title at the T20 World Cup on home soil, but accepted there might not be a spot for him in the starting XI at this stage.
“International cricket is a different beast,” he said last week.
“They won the World Cup eight months ago and that team hasn‘t changed since then.
“Those guys have been playing for Australia for a long time, but if I had the opportunity to be a part of it, I‘d be thrilled and really excited.
“I‘m not really thinking about it too much, to be honest … I just want to keep trying to improve and have fun. If I get there or I’m around at that time, then that would be awesome.”
David, who is yet to make his first-class debut, will get another opportunity to push for national selection at The Hundred and the Caribbean Premier League, where he will represent the Southern Brave and St Lucia Kings respectively.
Meanwhile, the Hurricanes announced on Friday that Jeff Vaughan had been appointed the BBL franchise’s new head coach, signing a three-year deal with the club.
“Vaughan is very highly rated across Australian cricket after his recent stint in the Australian coaching system,” Ponting said in a statement.
“Jeff has fantastic people management skills, and we are confident he can bring our group together and mould them into a winning team.”
Vaughan will be assisted by former Australian all-rounder James Hopes and former Victorian captain Darren Berry.
Cricket Tasmania chief executive Dominic Baker said in a statement: “We hired Ricky for not only his knowledge of the T20 game, and the cache and contacts he brings to our club, but also for an objective perspective as to where we can look for improvement from the past few seasons. Based on this, we are confident that we will have the optimal off-field line-up in the League for this season.
“Ricky’s involvement with the match day coaching staff will not only facilitate their own professional development through his support and mentoring but will see us having very experienced people at the helm come match day.”