Everything we do is for the betterment of West Indies - Brathwaite
Allrounder Carlos Brathwaite, who hit four successive sixes at the start of the final over to snatch the World Twenty20 title from England's grasp in Kolkata, has said "everything we do is for the betterment of West Indies." Brathwaite's comments echoed the emotional address from West Indies captain Darren Sammy, who expressed disappointment that his players had not received the support he felt they deserved.
"Most of the nations have more resources than we do, but we have natural talent," Brathwaite, 27, told ESPN Caribbean. "It has been said we don't have brains, that we don't harness our talent, that we do things off the field that contribute to poor on-field success. But I just want to say being around these guys, that everything we do on and off the field is for the betterment of West Indies, not just the team but also cricket and the region in general."
West Indies began the final over, bowled by Ben Stokes, needing 19 runs to win. Brathwaite, playing his first major tournament, launched sixes over long leg, long-on, long-off and deep midwicket off the first four balls to complete one of the greatest finishes in the game.
"It was a little nerve-wracking to be honest, I just tried to stay focused, use my cue words, watch the ball and take some pressure off Marlon," Brathwaite said. "It would have been too hard to give him a single and expect him to do it all. I just had to bite the bullet and try to get a couple of boundaries, which fortunately I did, give God thanks for bringing it home for the people in West Indies.
"After the third six I just backed myself, go hard, if it goes in the air I knew Marlon would finish it but I knew I had to be there as close to the end as possible. We continued to back ourselves, back our strength and our strength is hitting boundaries. Once we knew it was manageable we knew we could do it.
"I just want say a special mention to everyone in Sargeant's Village, my family, my friends and especially to Mr Errol Edey, the master bat-maker from the Caribbean.* He made this special beauty for me to use in the World Cup and he told me, 'Carlos, go out there and smash 'em'. Erroll, I did, and now we are world champions."
Watching from the other end, as Brathwaite brought the trophy home, was Marlon Samuels, who had kept the chase alive with an unbeaten 85 off 66 balls as the top and middle order fell around him. Brathwaite gave his senior team-mate due credit.
"It's us against the world and someone needed to take responsibility. And today Marlon Samuels after a slow start took responsibility and played a fantastic knock," Brathwaite told Star Sports. "That was amazing man, I wish I could use some expletives on TV to really express how much of a top knock that was. He did it in 2010, and I knew if Samuels was there in the end, he'll bring us home in 2016. It was a matter of when and not if."
*06.30GMT, April 6: Spelling errors have been corrected in this article.