Narine delighted with form in wake of England slump
l FORT LAUDERDALE
Exciting off-spinner Sunil Narine says he has banished the demons of the England tour and is happy to be back in form for the West Indies.
The 24-year-old produced a superb performance to take four for 12 from four overs as West Indies clobbered New Zealand by 61 runs on Sunday to make a clean sweep of the Twenty20 International double-header.
He snatched three for 34 in Saturday's 56-run win to finish the series as the leading bowler with seven wickets.
"Coming out of England I knew I had to do something special for the team. It's good to be back home," said Narine.
"The wicket suited my style of bowling. My strategy was to go out and do what I'm accustomed—that is to go out and get wickets for the West Indies. I felt I did my job quite well today and everyone is happy with the outcome."
Playing in cold, unfamiliar conditions in England last month, Narine was a shadow of the beguiling bowler that confused the Australians in the limited overs series back in March and who subsequently took the Indian Premier League by storm with 24 wickets.
He went wicket-less in his debut Test at Birmingham and took just one wicket in two expensive ten-over spells in two one-dayers. He also failed to take a wicket in the one-off T20I.
However, Narine came to life in the sunshine of south Florida at the weekend, exuding the confidence and enthusiasm that has come to characterise his brief career.
"I have to say it was a great effort by everyone in the team and I really enjoyed bowling. It was a very good weekend for us in the team and the fans in the stands as well," he pointed out.
"In both matches the batsmen put up good scores and gave me runs to bowl at, so I knew the onus was on me to get the ball in the right areas and once I did that the ball would work for me."
He added: "I was happy with my three wickets [on Saturday] but I felt I went for too many runs—I went at over eight runs an over. Having said that, it was a good pitch for batting and they were chasing over ten runs an over, so I knew they would come hard at me.
"Ideally, I would look to go at under seven per over in those circumstances, so I made sure I got it right today [on Sunday]."
The victories broke a nine-game winless slump for the Windies who failed to beat England in a single match on their recent two-month tour.
West Indies will now turn their attention to the five-match one-day tour starting in Jamaica tomorrow and Narine said the victories had set a nice tone for the series.
"We are on the right track with these two wins here in America. We set a good tone with these two wins and the batsmen batted really well," the Trinidadian explained.
"The way (Chris) Gayle and (Kieron) Pollard batted on Saturday was really good and made it a bit easy for the bowlers yesterday. [On Sunday] we played well again with the bat and the bowlers followed up again.
"We were hyped coming over here. We won by pretty big margins, but whether we win by 60 runs or ten runs it doesn't make much of a difference–a win is a win and we got the results we wanted."