West Indies flamboyant all-rounder Andre Russell is an entertainer and that makes him one of the most demanded cricketer in T20 format. He is currently enjoying the prospects of UAET20x. It's Emirates Cricket Board's first ever T20 league which is set to be launched in December this year. Russell and South African star batsman David Miller will be part of the league.
Speaking about the upcoming league in UAE, the Caribbean cricketer said, “I’m excited to be playing in UAE’s T20 league and ready to rock and roll. I’m really looking forward to it as I feel it’s going be a very exciting tournament and hope the fans come out and give the support.”
Speaking to Gulf News, he added, it's fans who keep him going. Russell wants to keep fans happy and the smile on their face lights up him from inside. “It is a very good feeling to go all around the world and playing cricket and put a smile on your fans faces. It will be a lot of fun to come to UAE again and give them some entertainment.”
Recently, the all-rounder bagged a hat-trick and cracked 121 runs off just 49 balls for Jamaica Tallawahs in Caribbean Premier League (CPL). He is a popular T20 cricketer. When asked about his high demand, he said, “It’s a good feeling. This is why I work so hard and this is the reason why I stay focused all the time and do my best in whatever leagues I am playing. In T20 everything counts and you are watched all the time and they enjoy watching me in action and that is why I am in high demand where T20 cricket is played. I just want to continue that way and make sure that I can have a good season in the UAE.”
Russell features in almost all major T20 leagues. “For me, each league is a different environment, country, and culture. Everywhere I played, I enjoyed going around smashing sixes and getting wickets and taking catches. It does not matter where I am playing, I am always trying to give my A game and make sure I do my best,” he said.
When it comes to T20, the swashbuckling batsman is a beast. “If you bat with a positive mind, it is possible to score fast. Once you cross your half century then automatically, you become extra confident and sometimes you won’t even know how quickly you are scoring.”
Not only batting, Russell contributes with the ball also. He talked about death bowling and said: “It can be difficult and fun. It all depends on your confidence and on making sure that you are well focused during those times. You also need a bit of luck during those moments. You can bowl a low full toss and get smashed for a six or get a wicket.”
With all his experience, Russell went on to say it's highly important for a buddy cricketer to work hard. “In practice sessions, work hard on batting, bowling and also fielding. They should also try and maintain strength and get stronger. I do strength training every single day and that can make me get better.”
T20 cricket recently reached Canada and it's spreading rapidly all over the world. He added that it's going to be bigger. “This format will definitely spread the game because everyone loves to play T20 and it’s fun. It’s fast-paced — the wickets falling, the sixes and fours coming regularly and the spectacular catches. Twenty20 is going to be bigger.”