In Tuesday’s victory against Pakistan in the Twenty20 International, England opener Alex Hales claimed he felt like he was making his debut once more after being back in the lineup for the first time in three years.
In the first of seven T20 matches, England defeated Pakistan by six wickets in Karachi thanks to Hales’ 53 from 40 balls and Harry Brook’s unbeaten 42.
After 17 years, England played its first game in Asia here.
Hales last competed for England in 2019, when the Guardian reported that he was serving a three-week suspension for recreational drug use. He was also removed from their preliminary 50-over World Cup selection.
Hales noted that it felt “very amazing” to return to the field for England. “Three years seemed like a lifetime. It’s the stuff of dreams to go out and come back with a winning squad scoring 50 points.
“It’s an enjoyable feeling. The three years missing were never in question, the guys claimed, and it was never related to cricket.
“But whenever it came time to play again after a three-year break, there was always anxiety and pressure. It was a fantastic evening since it felt like a premiere once more.”
On Thursday, the second Twenty20 game will take place.
International teams have largely declined to tour Pakistan since an attack by Islamist extremists on the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore in 2009 that left six police officers and two civilians dead.