If there is one cricketer in the world you would choose for your team in the shortest format of the gentleman’s game, West Indian Andre Russell would be a serious consideration. The versatile all-rounder, who will be part of Northern Warriors in the Abu Dhabi T10, is famous for his swagger and single-handedly decimating opponents with his powerful batting.
The 31-year-old has enjoyed unparalleled success in the T20 format and feels every cricketer must raise his game in T10. “The T10 format is obviously shorter than T20 and batsmen have very less time to get themselves in. You have to really attack and go after the bowling from ball one. As a bowler and a fielding team, you have to really be on your game and plan well as you know the batsmen are looking to take you down every delivery,” said the Jamaican-born star.
With less time to get accustomed to the playing conditions, the focus is on the batsman from the word go. “The T10 format has put pressure on the batsman to start striking and to be aggressive from ball one. You have to think about where you are looking to attack each bowler and also what field they are setting to work out where they are trying to bowl to you,” said Russell.
Russell believes the T10 format could also be the way forward to take the sport to the Olympics. “It would be brilliant for cricket to become an Olympic sport and I know all players would love the opportunity of representing their country at an Olympic event,” added Russell.
Talking about the Abu Dhabi T10, Russell said he was excited and confident it was going to be bigger and better than last year. “I am sure it will be a box office event. Abu Dhabi is a brilliant place to host the T10. It is a great place to tour as a player with a lot to do away from cricket culturally and the Zayed Sports City Stadium is an excellent stadium with brilliant facilities. Abu Dhabi seems to be attracting a lot of high profile cricket events and I am looking forward to getting over there,” added the West Indian.