Marquee batsman Darren Bravo said Wednesday West Indies would not be overawed by their opposition at the upcoming ICC World Cup in England, but would be focussing on executing their unique brand of cricket.
The two-time World Cup champions are not among the favourites for the May 30 to July 14 tournament largely due to their lowly number nine ranking, with hosts and world number England the hot favourites.
“To be honest, most other teams are quality teams but having said that, when we played against England no one gives us a chance, so I think that once we concentrate on what we have to do as a team, I think that is the most important thing,” the left-hander said during the Windies training camp at 3W’s Oval.
“We are not going to focus very much on the opposition. We have certain plans and certain roles we want to execute and I believe that the results will take care of itself. As I said before, no one gave us a chance against England and we went out there and proved that we can beat the best team in the world so we just have to go out there and continue believing in ourselves as much as possible.”
Bravo was referring to the recent five-match series home series against England which the hosts drew 2-2, with one match rained off.
Written off before the start, West Indies played outstandingly after losing the opening match by 26 runs at Kensington Oval, rebounding to win the second match of the doubleheader by 26 runs.
Rain forced the abandonment of the third ODI in Grenada before England clinched the fourth contest at the same venue, despite West Indies’ record 389 in pursuit of 419.
West Indies crushed England by seven wickets in the final match in St Lucia, with Chris Gayle slamming an astonishing 77 off 27 balls to end the series with 424 runs.
“I think it was a fantastic series for us as a team led brilliantly by Jason and Chris Gayle,” Bravo said.
“I think Chris set the tone at the top of the order in the ODIs that gave the motivation to go out there and perform against the best team in the world. It was a very good series and I am happy that it was very competitive and it should give us confidence moving forward.”
Bravo is part of the Windies 14-man squad preparing for the tour of Ireland which runs from May 3-17 in Dublin. They will clash with the hosts and Bangladesh in the triangular series.
The camp is being overseen by new interim head coach Floyd Reifer who was appointed last week, and the experienced Bravo said he was making the most of the preparation, especially with former Test batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan playing a key role with the batting group.
“The coach outlines what he wants from us and we try to come up with the brand of cricket we want to play,” said the 30-year-old Bravo, who averages 32 from 102 One-Day Internationals.
“Moving forward the guys have been working on their technical areas as much as possible. Now we have Sarwan who came in for a couple of days to help us with our batting. He has been working tremendously well with us. I had a couple sessions, so far so good.
“Hopefully he will be with us moving forward to Ireland because I believe with a young batting team like this, someone of Sarwan ‘s stature will mean a lot to us as a batting unit. We will see how it goes but so far the camp has been going well.
“It has been a lot of hard work, fitness-wise and otherwise and we are enjoying it.”