(WICB) BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – Narsingh Deonarine said he has returned to the West Indies team a different man from the one who left two years.
Sure, he still bats left-handed and bowls off-breaks, but he said he has made some significant changes to his game and his personal life.
Deonarine was dropped from the team after the Digicel 2010 Series and decided to take a new approach to cricket and to life at that stage.
Last August, he was married to Alisha, daughter of former West Indies spinner Inshan Ali, and things have changed for the better, according to Deonarine.
“Marriage has changed me and given me a new approach to everything I do,” he said. “It has brought focus and a better understanding to everything I do.
“I was away from the team for a while and I really want to make it count. While I was away I made some significant changes to my approach to the game.”
He added: “I worked really hard on my batting and set realistic goals. I worked really hard and stuck to what I wanted to achieve.
“One of my goals was to be the leading batsman in this year’s Regional 4-Day Tournament and I achieved that. It landed me a place back in the West Indies team and it feels good to be back playing at the highest level.”
Deonarine said the Digicel 2012 Series against Australia was the perfect chances to prove that his time away from the West Indies team has taught him a lot.
“I would say I’m batting really well, probably as well as I have ever batted and I want to convert that into big scores,” he said.
“It’s all about knowing what is required and doing what is required. I’m also bowling well and the ball is coming out nicely. I see this series as a big opportunity to get back into the thick of things and secure a spot.”
Deonarine played eight Test for West Indies. He had a best score of 82, which came during the second innings of the third Test at the WACA on the West Indies 2009 tour of Australia.
“I played well that day,” he said. “I batted well with (Brendan Nash), but I got out at the wrong time, at a crucial stage in the game.
“I learnt a lot from that innings. I got a really good understanding of what is required to make it in Test cricket.”
He said: “That day I had to leave a lot of balls and I had to be really patient and dig in. It takes time, it takes discipline, it takes understanding.
“I watch the way the good players like (Shivnarine Chanderpaul) bat, and to get runs in Test cricket, you have to know your strengths and play to your strengths.”
The first Digicel Test between West Indies and Australia begins on Saturday at Kensington Oval.
First ball is 10 a.m. (East Caribbean Time).