Senior West Indies pacer Ravi Rampaul feels that playing for Barbados Tridents in the ongoing Oppo Champions League T20 in India will help him “boost his confidence” ahead of the five-match ODI series against the hosts, starting in another three weeks time.
“It would be good for me because I would like to hit the ground running. Hopefully, I can get in some good performances in the tournament and get my confidence up ahead of that series,” Rampaul told PTI.
Rampaul had played a pivotal role in Tridents’ successful campaign in the Caribbean Premier League finishing with 18 wickets in the tournament and the 29-year-old feels that he is in the “best phase” of his career right now.
“I have been working hard and I think this is my best phase in my T20 career. This is because I have become a far better death bowler than I was ever before. I worked hard during the CPL to sharpen up on fitness front and wickets I took is a testimony to that. Hopefully in the CLT20, I can be among the wickets again,” the burly pacer stated.
Rampaul did let out one of the trade secrets which led to his improving success rate in the shorter format. “Since CPL played mostly in the day, I tried to get the ball to reverse swing a little more and that worked to my advantage.”
For Rampaul, the toughest batsman in the tournament will be maverick Aussie Glenn Maxwell, who was a nightmare for the bowlers during the last edition of Indian Premier League.
“There are a lot of top batsmen in the Oppo CLT20 but I think Glenn Maxwell is right up there too and seeing we have him in our first game (against Kings XI Punjab), he will be the toughest to bowl to,” maintained Rampaul, who has played 88 Tests, 22 T20 Internationals apart from 18 Tests.
Asked about how much will Tridents miss their regular skipper Kieron Pollard, who is playing for Mumbai Indians, Rampaul gave a straight reply, “We have a lot of talent in our team. We don’t depend on one player. We have an entire team and once they perform together, we should come out victorious.”
“Like all teams, we have a chance. We’ve lost three of our top players (Pollard, Malik, Dwayne Smith) but we have a lot of talent in our team and the team spirit is good. Hopefully, we can play as hard as we can but like each team, we have a good chance at winning.”
For Rampaul, the similarity between strips in the Caribbean and that available in the sub-continent is not the moot point but how a team performs in crucial junctures.
“There are similarity in wickets but it comes down to how smart we play and how intelligent we approach each game,” observed Rampaul.
“Mohali has a little bit of grass and a little bit of bounce and we are stacked with fast bowlers. Hopefully, once we reach there and assess the pitch and see how best we can use the variation that we have.”