Going toe to toe with a great compatriot

And, for the time being at least, the same figures as well in Test cricket. In a remarkable coincidence, the 22-year-old left-hander has got the exact same figures that his illustrious cousin had after his first 12 Tests. Both men made 941 runs in their first 12 Tests and 22 innings at an average of 47.05. Bravo has two hundreds, Lara had one – that’s about the only difference.

“I am quite honoured by the fact that I am compared with Brian Lara,” said Bravo after a sparkling 136 in the second Test against India. “He is definitely my role model. I play my natural game and look something like Lara, but nevertheless, I know that emulating him and to achieve what he has achieved will be difficult. Hopefully, I will finish with some of the good players up there by the time I am done with international cricket.”
Bravo held India up on day four of the second Test with a classy compilation despite the West Indies having their backs to the wall.

“I played my natural game as much as possible, luckily the big hits came off,” he said. “I am happy with my performance. Batting with Chanderpaul gave me a lot of confidence.”
It took Bravo 10 Tests to make his first hundred, but now he has two in his last three matches. “I don’t think my batting has changed in any sort of way, I worked on my concentration a lot more,” he revealed. “I remembered something my brother (Dwayne) told me – that when you get the first century, the second and third will come much easier than the first one. That is something that I kept very close to me. Hopefully, I can continue with the performances for the West Indies.” He did say, though, that he had worked a lot on his batting against spin. “Before this Test, I played with my bat alongside the pad. In the nets here, I have been trying to get my bat as much in front of the pad as possible to avoid the leg before. As a batsman there has been improvement, it is important to keep improving and play my natural game.”

After being rolled over for 153 in their first innings at the Eden, the Caribbeans made a commendable 463 in their second knock. “We decided to come together as a team, play our strokes, express ourselves in the best possible way. It was good to see Adrian (Barath) and Kirk (Edwards) bat well at the top of the order and Marlon Samuels later. It is good to know that it is not just Chanderpaul that we can depend on to get the big scores. We can hold our heads high with our performance in the second innings.”

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