Tom Banton is an English wicket-keeper-batsman with an unorthodox but explosive style of play. Buckinghamshire-born Tom is a product of the Warwickshire County Cricket Club’s system. His ability to hit long sixes and his ease with reverse sweep make him one of the most destructive players to look out for in the future.
England, England XI, Kolkata Knight Riders, England Under-19, Somerset, Brisbane Heat, England Lions, Peshawar Zalmi, Qalandars, Welsh Fire
It’s not the runs Tom is scoring but it’s the unnatural way of hitting the ball into the stands that makes him watchable. Banton’s range of shots including his reverse sweep is a result of his hockey practice, a game that he nearly represented at a young age before switching to cricket. He is very quick behind the stumps and has the potential to replace Jos Butler later.
Let us have a look at his one-day international (ODI) and T20 international (T20I) careers.
Somerset brought Banton to county stadium and he made his debut for them on 16 July 2017 against Middlesex in the 2017 NatWest T20 Blast. Banton scored 4 runs facing 7 balls. He only got 4 games in the first two seasons with Somerset. It was the 2019 T20 Blast where the world got introduced to Tom Banton’s whirlwind. He scored a staggering 549 runs in 13 innings with an average of 42.23 and a jaw-dropping strike rate of 161.43. He hit 23 sixes.
Tom Banton was picked up by English selectors for a series against New Zealand. He debuted in the 3rd T20I of the series on 5 November 2019. Banton scored a quick 18 runs in 10 deliveries. He scored his first international T20 half-century against Pakistan in his 4th game which was abandoned due to rain. He was England’s leading run-scorer with 137 runs in a 3-game series.
Banton had a disastrous tour against Australia in 2020 after cricket was restarted. So far Banton has scored 205 runs in 9 games at a strike rate of 143. 35 for England.
Banton’s merciless batting has caught the attention of different franchises all over the world. He was picked up by Brisbane Heat for Big Bash League (BBL) 2019 – 2020. He scored 223 runs in 7 games with an average of 31.85 and a strike rate of 176.98. Banton couldn’t perform his magic in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) for Peshawar Zalmi and scored only 74 runs in 7 games at an average of 12.33 and a strike rate of 129.82.
Banton has been picked up by Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020.
Banton participated in the ICC Under-19 World Cup 2017 – 2018. He scored 233 runs in 6 games of the tournament. After a successful domestic season with the bat, he was picked up for the South Africa tour. He made his debut on 4 February 2020. He scored 18 in 24 balls and got out lbw while playing a slog sweep to Shamsi. He got his first half-century against Ireland in Southampton. He scored 58 runs in 51 balls in this game that England lost to Ireland. In a short span of 7 months which was heavily affected by the COVID pandemic, Banton played 6 ODIs scoring 134 runs at an average of 26.80.