West Indian Dwayne Bravo has likened team-mate Andre Russell to countrymen Chris Gayle and Brian Lara.
Russell recently returned to international cricket – and starred with the bat in particular during March's T20I series against Sri Lanka.
“He's the best in the world,” Bravo told Trinidad-based radio station I955 FM.
“It's the same I used to say of Gayle when Gayle was in his prime – we are happy to have him representing us, we didn't have to come up and bowl against him in an international match. It's the same with Russell. Russell now is our Gayle, is our Lara, in the T20 format. He is the superstar.”
Bravo and Russell will be part of the Indian Premier League next month. The former will play for the Chennai Super Kings and the latter the Kolkata Knight Riders. The start of the 2020 IPL has been delayed from 29 March to 15 April as a preventative measure against the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
West Indies in T20 World Cup
The West Indies have been pooled with Pakistan, New Zealand, hosts Australia and two qualifying teams for the T20 World Cup later this year. The West Indies won the World Twenty20 (since renamed the T20 World Cup) in 2012 and 2016 – and are the defending champions.
“Prior to that T20I series in Sri Lanka, we weren't really consistent as a team over the years in T20 cricket. With the 3-0 loss in the ODI series, we T20 guys had a chat among ourselves along with the management and made a pledge that we want to start back winning series. We said we wanted to be back being the most dominant team in the T20 format,” added Bravo.
“We have produced some of the best players in the world and when we are together in the same team, we have to stamp our authority, and to get the cricketing world to respect West Indies cricket again and especially West Indies' T20 team. We said, ‘All hands on deck, let's start with this Sri Lanka series and make sure we send the message.' Yeah, that's what we did.
“I'm just happy to be like that – father-figure, mentor, guide, to allow these young boys to go out there and showcase their talent to the world. All of us are on the same page, no egos in the dressing room, one common goal to just win cricket games and dominate.”