New Delhi: It is almost a foregone conclusion that every time there is a T20 competition and Sunil Narine is a part of it, the captain will turn to him not only to get rid of the opposition batsmen, but also to slow the run-rate.
Even in the current CLT20, Narine has answered Trinidad & Tobago skipper Denesh Ramdin’s call every single time as he leads the pack with eight wickets in four matches for the Caribbean outfit.
But there is more to Narine than just weaving his magic over a spell of four overs in a T20 match. Narine harbours hopes of playing Test cricket for the West Indies in the long term. He might have picked 15 wickets in the five Tests he has played, he wants to do much more. And the fact that he wasn’t picked for the upcoming two-Test series against India does bother him a bit, even though Narine is trying not to think too much about it.
“You want to play all formats of the game, but I guess we have a lot of spinners back in the Caribbean and I don’t see any reason for me to try too hard and get frustrated if I don’t get picked. At the end of the day, I am enjoying whatever I am playing and I wish to play as much as I can. At the end of the day cricket is cricket,” Narine told Mail Today.
His love for the longer format of the game is evident when he says that freelance cricketers aren’t the future of the game. “I won’t say freelance cricketers is the way to go because at the end of the day there is West Indies or South Africa or England — countries that you represent. But T20 cricket definitely gives a lot more opportunities to players and even though you can’t play Test cricket, there is T20 cricket,” he said.
T20 cricket was considered a batsman’s game till Narine came onto the scene. But Narine feels he hasn’t done anything different and it’s just his style of bowling and thought process that has done the trick.
“I won’t say I have done anything different from what spinners do in a T20 game. Probably I am not just the normal off-spinner and I have a little more to offer to the game. Basically, when you come in new into the international arena, it takes a while for opposition teams to sort you out and it is after this phase that you have to raise the level of your game.”
“This is where confidence works wonders. Once you are confident about your game, even though the batsman knows which way the ball will go, you still hold the edge. At the end of the day, it is the batsman’s game and if your personality exudes confidence, it gets that bit easier.”
Trinidad & Tobago have a big game against Mumbai Indians on Saturday. While Narine is excited, he doesn’t want to take any undue pressure.
“Any player lives for a challenge and it is in the big games that you want to give your best. And moreover, it is a team game and I am sure that if we go out tomorrow and do what we have been doing, we will give Mumbai Indians a good fight,” he said.