James Redfern Hopes Profile
He may not be as talented as some of the other Australian all-rounders who have graced the game, but in James Hopes is a cricketer who gives his hundred percent and is ever ready to put up his hand when the team needs him the most.
An ‘Emerging Queensland Player’ at 13, Hopes played for the underage sides before graduating into Australia’s Under-19 team and showcased a brilliant 1998 Youth World Cup with an average close to 50. He made his first-class debut for Queensland in 2001 and following a brilliant 2004 season in which he scored seven hundreds, played his first ODI for Australia against New Zealand in 2005. He scalped Craig McMillan on debut but a poor run in the VB series where he struggled to pick wickets led to his dropping. Though, Watson’s injury retained his place for the Bangladesh and India tours. After the all-rounder’s return, Hopes once again struggled to cement his place in the side but since 2007, has regularly featured in the Aussie ODI side. He has also made several crucial contributions, the most notable of them being the 57 off 26 balls against the West Indies and a five-wicket haul against Ireland which saved Australia from an ignominious defeat.
Nicknamed “Catfish”, Hopes is an aggressive batsman in the lower middle-order, whose bowling has decent pace but lacks the sting to be a front-line speedster. Throughout his career, Hopes has had to fight for his place in side, especially in the presence of other promising youngsters.