Carlos Brathwaite intends to deliver some match-winning performances for the Bears in their Vitality Blast campaign - and also have loads of fun along the way.
West Indies all-rounder Brathwaite has arrived in Birmingham ahead of the Blast which the Bears open with back-to-back away games against Yorkshire Vikings and Notts Outlaws on Thursday and Friday.
The Bears are looking to the big Barbadian for leadership with bat and ball on the field – and he also has a huge role to play off the field as he helps cultivate the perfect mindset among the squad.
That is a role he is embracing. Brathwaite is already loving life with his new team-mates, and he reckons the best way to play good T20 cricket and serve up high entertainment for the fans is to work hard – but also chill out and enjoy what you do.
“You don’t want to feel like you are coming to work,” he said. “We all appreciate that it’s a job and our livelihood and we know that, if performances are not right, then questions will be asked. But within those pressures and challenges you want to feel as though you are coming in to chill out with your mates.
“You want to kind of take it back to cricket on the road, so you look forward to getting outside with your mates, sharing stories and having fun. That’s the atmosphere you want in the dressing room, coupled with the ultimate professionalism of doing the right things, being on time, getting enough rest, eating well and being mentally prepared for every game, and then ultimately executing on the field so the fans have something to smile about.Carlos Brathwaite
“It’s about being as professional as can be, but with a real sense of fun and enjoyment.”
Brathwaite has brought masses of fun and enjoyment – and success – to teams all over the world in T20 cricket. Now he is looking to not only play his part in delivering on-field success for the Bears but also help build for the future.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to travel the world and play in a lot of different cultures and atmospheres and I think, as an overseas player, it is important to allow the young players around you to pull the knowledge from you as best they can,” he said. “Anything I can assist them with, I am very keen to do. I am more than willing to share all I can because it’s about leaving a bit of a legacy with the club, not only with performances, but with the players coming through and learning.”
Brathwaite will look to hit the ground running for the Bears in the five away games which with they open the Blast campaign – and is also looking forward to then making his home debut against Lancashire on June 18.
“I have never played at Edgbaston so that will be a very exciting day for me,” he said. “I’ve heard a lot about the atmosphere, especially on Finals Day and how it lifts the England team, so it will be a pleasure to play there. I’m really looking forward to it.”