Calcutta: West Indies captain Darren Sammy is unfazed by the prospect of facing tough opponents early in the tournament.
As a team, the West Indies have never been short on confidence, even when their fortunes were at the lowest ebb. Now, riding on a groundswell of support, it is relishing the tag of favourites at the World T20 .
“The good thing is that the fans are rallying behind us,” Sammy said on Friday. “When we left home, we felt the love of the Caribbean people and the belief that we can do well. Our strongest asset is the belief we have in our dressing room. All 15 guys and the management and the support staff believe we can do well. That’s a plus for us. I always said that being favourites doesn’t always guarantee you a place in the final. You’ve got go out and play every match and play well in order to win.”
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Sammy wasn’t fazed at the prospect of facing tough opponents straightaway. “To us, every game in this tournament is a tough game. We have prepared for this tournament, we just had our last practice session and everybody is ready,” he said. “Tomorrow (Saturday) is the game against Australia and all our attention and focus will be to get over this game. We have all prepared well and are ready to take on Australia."
“Australia may be in transition but we never look down our opponents. We always have utmost respect for all our opponents. We all know you can never count the Australians out. They are always hungry for success and they have got a good bunch of guys. Last time we had a good series against them and it should be an exciting game tomorrow (Saturday).”
The muscle in the West Indian batting is the envy of every team in the tournament, but Sammy said there was more to batting than just smashing every ball out of the park. “I don’t see it like that because if you see guys like Jayawardene and Sangakkara score... It’s about executing it properly,” he said. “It’s good to have players who clear the boundary with ease but at the end of the day, you have to do it on the pitch.”