Across at Warner Park in Basseterre, the Windies opted to field and though Ashley Nurse struck twice in the first over itself – he dismissed both Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar for first-ball ducks – they allowed Bangladesh to reach 95/5 after 10 overs. Bangladesh also started well with the ball, but Russell, Marlon Samuels and Rovman Powell blasted away to make sure the target was achieved with ease.
Batting at No.3 for a change, Russell, who missed the last one-day international against Bangladesh because of an injury, had a great time.
“We lost the ODI series (2-1), but we wanted to put back some pride in our game, try and win the series 3-0 and that is the plan. It was a good knock from myself, and well played to Marlon as well. Overall, it was a good win,” he said.
And now, Dre Russ wants to move one slot higher!
“Been a while since I have played the night-watchman role. It is good, it is good, it is more time, more responsibility and I am enjoying it so far. I have always wanted to open in T20s, now I am getting closer, which is No.3,” he joked. “And you never know, second over of the innings you are out there. It is always a challenge to face the new ball and I am up for it.”
He confessed to not being totally fit – he bowled his full quota of overs too – and is targeting some ‘Superman stuff’ as soon as possible.
“I will not say I am a 100, because when you are a 100, you can do whatever, do some Superman stuff and dive around. I am a bit … I am at 95. I am not a 100 percent confident in running and diving around, but I am happy enough to be playing. That's the plan,” he said.
Shakib Al Hasan, the Bangladesh captain, blamed the defeat on the early wickets. After the Nurse-engineered 5/2, Shakib and Liton Das took the total to 43 before the two fell off consecutive balls to Keemo Paul. Mushfiqur Rahim was also dismissed before the halfway mark.
“We lost early wickets, and that was one problem, and we lost wickets in crucial times,” said Shakib. “Those are the crucial areas, we kept losing wickets and never got the momentum.”
In the last 10 overs, Bangladesh scored just 48 runs. “Yes, and that is more to do with the wickets. We lost five wickets in that 10-over period. In a T20 game, it gets very difficult for any team if you are losing five wickets and then coming back and score 170-180,” acknowledged Shakib.
Russell was named the Player of the Match, but it really was Nurse who set things up with that first over.
“We spoke about it. Thankfully it worked and he did a job for his team, giving us a start,” said Carlos Brathwaite, the Windies captain. “It's important for each and every one to express themselves, play your shots and be free.
“Obviously, it's important to remain calculated. If you've made a mistake, we can have a chat and improve. But it's about doing it your way. Sometimes it's just about being satisfied than improving, and what was especially delightful was the fielding. So probably not change or improve, but just replicate that fielding performance and that energy.”
First Published: August 2, 2018, 12:13 PM IST