BPL more challenging with Warner and de Villiers around: Andre Russell
Andre Russell (AFP Image)

Andre Russell, the West Indies allrounder believes the addition of star players like AB de Villiers and David Warner in the Bangladesh Premier League promises to go a long way in bringing the best out of players. Russell, who will play for the Dhaka Dynamites feels Warner, captain of Sylhet Sixers and de Villiers of Rangpur will trigger healthy competition within players of all franchises.

“It’s going to be competitive. Those guys bring something special to the tournament. At the end of the day, they are human beings but they are special (players), especially AB de Villiers and David Warner. We all know how destructive they can be,” Russell said.

“We just have to make sure that we get them out as soon as possible when we play against them. The longer Warner and AB de Villiers bat, more the damage they can do. Playing against these guys we have to plan a bit harder and more technical. But these guys are good for this tournament.”

One of the key players of his side, Russell is confident about Dynamites performing well this season. Dynamites also comprise West Indies trio of Rovman Powell, Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard, and Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan. The side has lifted the BPL title three times while once finishing as runners-up.

“I think we have a good team,” Russell said. “Our expectation is still to win. But it’s a new set of guys and I have played with most of these guys before. New tournament and new year too, so we have to start on the right foot and see and where we go from there. We are a good team. We have good experienced players. So at the end of the day, we just have to make sure we put all the experience into good use.”

Russell has in the past played with Shakib for IPL side Kolkata Knight Riders and Caribbean Premier League Jamaican Tallawahs. Shakib has of late registered couple of demerit points but Russell is not reading much into it, adding that sometimes as captain, players tend to get carried away.

“Shakib is a very good skipper. I have played with him at KKR and Jamaica Tallawahs as well. He plays hard and at times, he may get grumpy and that’s how the captains are. We are all professionals and once we make an error, the skipper is going to react hard. As a captain, I know he will do his best to lead the team,” Russell said.

Russell asserted that his aim is to look after his team rather than dwelling upon what the other franchises are doing. Dynamites have a good blend of international cricketers, most of them being from the sub-continent.

“I think Bangladeshi players are coming from playing a lot of cricket and that’s good. There are couple of players from England who have not played for a while. But the make-up of our side is players from sub-continent. We have very few from outside (the subcontinent), so hopefully that will be a good step because we think that they have better knowledge to play in these conditions,” added the allrounder.

“I am not trying to put too much attention to the other teams. I think our focus will be on ourselves (about) what we can do. Obviously, there are some really good teams out there and there is no easy game. But our focus will be on ourselves and what we can do to try and win games.”