Mumbai: West Indies dashing all-rounder Dwayne Bravo heaped praise on his former Chennai Super Kings skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni calling him a good leader asserting that the CSK connection will always remain between the both of them.
The star-studded two-time champions in the IPL and Rajasthan Royals were suspended from the cash-rich league for two years after their key officials Gurunath Meiyappan and Raj Kundra indulged in betting activities during the 2013 season.
“I will definitely miss MS Dhoni (in my team). CSK has been just like a family during the last five years I have been with the side. MS is a very good person, a very good leader. We enjoy each other’s company. The CSK family will always be together regardless of anything. We have separated now but that connection will always remain,” Bravo said during an event, here on Friday.
Bravo was recently bought by new entrants Gujarat Lions for Rs 4 crore during the IPL Auction for the upcoming season. The 32-year-old Trinidadian pointed out rather cheekily that although Team India skipper, who will lead Rising Pune Supergiants, and he share a good rapport, he will always want to emerge victorious and beat Dhoni’s side.
“I will always want to beat his team. With the Gujarat Lions and Suresh (Suresh Raina) as our captain, when we come up against MS’s team I will definitely want to win,” he added.
West Indies were beaten by an in-form Dhoni and Co on Thursday at Eden Gardens during the warm-up game ahead of the ICC World T20. However, Bravo doesn’t believe facing India was a tough competition.
“It was not tough playing against the number-ranked team. We are number two. It’s number one versus number two. It’s good to play against the Indian team. We definitely think there’s going to be a game in the future where both teams will meet again, maybe a semifinal or final. It’s good to get a taste of one of the toughest teams in the competition but at any given day anything is possible,” Bravo said.
The West Indies enter the global tournament without any match practice as a team in the shortest format, although many players featured in T20 leagues across the world. Bravo, who has featured in 55 T20Is understands it’s a cause of concern.
“Yes, it’s not ideal to come into a tournament when you don’t have a lot of games under your belt but having said that we had a good camp in Dubai. We had four warm-up games there. Most of us played in the PSL (Pakistan Super League) and we played in the Big Bash League so the experience is there that is more important. It’s just a matter of a few games for the other players and then we take it from there,” he said.
The Caribbean boys kick off their campaign against 2010 champions England on March 16 in Mumbai. As compared to Eoin Morgan and his side, the Windies have much more experience of playing in the sub-continent. However Bravo wants to remain grounded and shrugged off questions of having any edge against their opponents.
“I don’t think we have an edge. We start off even. West Indian players are more experienced in Indian conditions than England players. But at the same time England have good players so we have to give them respect. It’s very important to start well as a team,” Bravo added.
Darren Sammy’s side faced a major blow when their go-to spinner Sunil Narine was reported for a suspect bowling action and was not able to correct it before the tournament. Bravo was quick to point that such kind of incidents damages a bowler psychologically.
“Yes, definitely. Sunil has never been the same bowler as before. It’s a bit disappointing but something we have to live with. Sunil is young and he has age on his side. He has a good team behind him and hopefully he will pass whatever tests he has to take and be back again. The team will need and love Sunil Narine playing,” he pointed out.
The lively lad, also a great dancer on the field has come up with numerous videos, Chalo Chalo being the most popular. Now Bravo is all set to come up with yet another single on March 14.
“No chalo chalo, but I’m going to launch my new single it’s called Champions and I will be launching it on March 14, here in Mumbai.” And will there be any Indian cricketers? “There won’t as I shot the video in LA,” Bravo signed off....