(Trinidad Express) Darren Bravo has constantly had his batting style compared with that of retired batting maestro Brian Lara, who is also his cousin.
And after being dismissed in the first Test following starts of 51 and 32, it is the advice of Lara, as well as Bravo’s elder brother and fellow West Indies batsman Dwayne—currently playing for Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League—to which Darren is looking to inspire him to that “special” innings at Queen’s Park Oval in the second Test against Australia, starting tomorrow.
The younger Bravo, who will play his first Test on his home ground, where he plays for Trinidad and Tobago and Queen’s Park Cricket Club (QPCC), is pleased with his personal form and looking forward to the occasion.
“I’ve been timing the ball well in the nets, I’ve been working hard, (and) I’m getting some advice from Brian and my brother as well,” he told the media after West Indies’ morning session yesterday at the match venue. “So I’m taking it one step at a time, and hopefully sooner or later something special is around the corner.”
Prompted as to what advice Lara had given him, Bravo replied: “just a matter of the way I go about building an innings, and it’s something I’m working on, so hopefully I can reap the rewards in this Test match.”
The West Indies too could do with transforming some positive form into victory. Bravo (Darren) himself was happy with their dominance in the first innings of the match, and said the team is hoping to level the series and give the fans something to cheer about.
“The good thing about it is that we understand the fact that (Australia) are always going to hard come at us, and we must be mindful about that. It’s very important that we stay focused and try and execute our game plan as much as possible. As long as we do that, we’re going to reap the rewards in the end.”
No player in the match will be as familiar with the conditions and the ground as Darren, and he expects spin to play a major part in the latter stages of the contest.
He conceded that “a few hours of bad cricket” had given Australia the chance for victory after the visitors declared, being 43 runs behind in the first innings. But “positive” cricket, Darren feels, is a key ingredient to getting West Indies that much-needed win.
“We know where we went wrong in the first Test, and it’s something that we need to rectify as soon as possible,” he explained. “We don’t want it to happen again, so hopefully we can come together as a team and work out a way to counteract that mishap in the first Test and get it right in this game.”
Asked about former Australian captain Steve Waugh’s claim that he would be the next “superstar” in World cricket, Darren feels it will not add pressure on him to perform.
“I’m humbled by the fact that he has highlighted me as the next best player in the world,” the stylish left-hander stated.
“(But) I’m not focusing on that. My main goal is to go out there and perform for the West Indies. I’m taking it one step at a time and hopefully I can get the job done.”