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Confident Russell up for Aussie battle
CANBERRA—Exciting West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell is champing at the bit to face Australia, and says he is backing himself to execute against the former World champions.
Russell, along with the Darren Sammy-led West Indies side, arrived yesterday (Friday afternoon, Eastern Caribbean time) following 28 hours of travel from the Caribbean.
West Indies will play the Aussies in five-match One-Day International series and a one-off Twenty20, beginning February 1 in Perth.
The last time Russell faced Australia in ODIs, he was on top of his game with bat and ball, helping the Windies to a 2-2 verdict in the five-match series in the Caribbean last year.
With the memories still fresh, the athletic Jamaica is hoping he can once again have a say in the outcome of the series.
“It boosts my confidence playing against top teams such as Australia. It boosts me as a player,” Russell said on arrival here.
“I am looking forward to doing well again against Australia. I’ve gotten some good scores against them and put on a crucial partnership with Sammy but we couldn’t get the job done they way we would’ve liked to get it done in that game.
In that Caribbean outing, Russell came alive in the third game with the series locked at 1-1, punching a cameo 37 from 42 balls in a 64-run, seventh wicket stand with Carlton Baugh, as the contest ended in a dramatic tie.
His near run-a-ball 34 and two-wicket haul in the fourth game saw Windies to victory but his 33-ball 41 – in a century stand with Sammy—and four wickets were not enough to save the hosts from defeat in the final game. Though it will be his first time playing in Australia, Russell said he expected conditions to be favourable.
“I’m looking forward to doing my best in Australia. [There will be] bouncy weeks and I hope it pleases the way I play in terms of bowling and batting so I am looking forward to a good series,” said the 24-year-old, who bowls a brisk right-arm medium pace.
West Indies will open the tour with a one-day encounter against a Prime Minister’s XI on Tuesday. (CMC)
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