Allrounder Kevon Cooper is in Florida with the Trinbago Knight Riders after having his work visa for America sorted and he will take his usual place on the team for their clash against the St.
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WI not carried away—Bravo
MIRPUR—All rounder Dwayne Bravo says defending champions West Indies would not get carried away by their streak of wins leading into the World T20 tournament in Bangladesh.
West Indies registered convincing wins over Sri Lanka on Wednesday and England on Tuesday, in warm-up matches, as they prepare for the tournament which begins in earnest this weekend.
Bravo says his team is eager to successfully defend its title which he believes is possible based on the current form of the Caribbean outfit. “We come here to defend our title. We are not going to get too ahead of our self or get arrogant about it,” said Bravo. “But at the same time we are playing good cricket but as long as we continue to show good form we fancy our chance to defend it”.
The Caribbean cricketers will start as one of the favourites, placed in a tough Group B that includes India, Australia and Pakistan.
It was far from smooth sailing for Darren Sammy's men through the early phrases of the last T20 World Cup until they found form in the semifinals. “To me this one is harder because there are fewer games,” said Bravo.
“It’s a very tough group and it’s the top two teams that will qualify but we still have most of our players but we remember what we did last couple of years in the world cup”.
West Indies have also impressed in their recent series triumph over England winning two of the three matches convincingly and suffering a narrow defeat in the third.
Bravo says he is encouraged by the total team effort being displayed in recent wins. “But it’s a lot of hard work, shorter tournament, different conditions,” he pointed out.
“But we look forward to the challenges and it’s nice to see Chris Gayle among the runs again and Dwayne smith playing his part. So everyone is chipping in, (Krishmar) Santokie also as well playing a big role”. Fast bowler ravi Rampaul said smart use of the conditions will be key to West Indies’ success.
“They key is knowing the conditions, knowing the kind of wickets you’re going to bowl on and the right variations you’re going to execute on the wicket. That will be the main thing in these conditions,” the experienced seamer said here Thursday.
“The conditions (here) are basically the same. The dew factor at night maybe a little different to what we are accustomed to but variation of the ball and execution will be key.” The 29-year-old Rampaul, who has played 22 T20 Internationals, said there was a great mood inside the Windies camp and high belief they could retain the title they won two years ago in Sri Lanka.
“It is a good feeling to always represent West Indies in a World Cup match. This year we’re trying to retain the trophy so preparation and stuff has gone well and the team is gelling well so hopefully we can do it,” he said.
“It would mean the world to the Caribbean. People are looking to us to come here and retain our trophy. We have a good team, we’re strong so once we play together, we’ll win it.” Rampaul is expected to lead the seam attack which includes the exciting Jamaican left-arm pair of Krishmar Santokie and Sheldon Cottrell.
As the experienced member of the attack, however, he remains clear on his role. “I was always picking up early wickets with the new ball [in the last T20 World Cup] and the plan remains the same, trying to take early wickets and then coming back at the end and trying to better my performances,” he stressed.
West Indies start their campaign with a game against India on Sunday.