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June 6, 2014
West Indies batsman Darren Bravo has said the team needs to bat well twice in a Test more consistently, if they are to improve their faltering Test record. Bravo said the upcoming home Tests against New Zealand presents a chance for their batsmen to maintain that intensity.
Bravo was speaking after winning the Cricketer of the Year Award and the Caribbean T20 MVP Award at the WICB/WIPA awards on Thursday in Kingston.
"Their (New Zealand) bowling attack has been doing very well over the last couple of years. We don't normally bat well twice in a Test," Bravo told WICB Media. "At times we tend to get a decent score in the first innings and falter in the second or the other way around. That is something we need to rectify. When our batsmen get starts we need to carry on and get big scores."
Bravo was part of the preparatory camp in Barbados where he spent time with the West Indies legend Garry Sobers. One of the things he picked up from Sobers was the importance of creating scoring opportunities, instead of letting the opposition bowlers take control.
"He singled out that I should be able to play all around the wicket," Bravo said. "At times the opposition will block your strong area. So you could take those same deliveries and play it through midwicket. You set the field for yourself, rather than let the opposition dictate your pace. I will be looking to do that in this series.
He added that the time spent with Sobers was invaluable. "It's something I will cherish for the rest of my life. When he left the camp I really started missing him. He eased my mind as much as possible and he was in the nets working on some technical areas and also sharing a laugh. Wonderful sharing a week and a half with him."
Bravo scored a match-saving 218 in the Dunedin Test against New Zealand late last year. It was Bravo's highest Test score, coming when West Indies were faced with a massive first-innings deficit of 396. West Indies lost the second Test by an innings and with it the series 1-0.
"It was a great innings down in New Zealand, my first time there," he said. "We were staring at the jaws of defeat and I went out there and put up my hand and did the job for my team. That was something to feel good about."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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Stats highlights from the fourth ODI between India and West Indies in Dharamsala