Mumbai: West Indian fast bowler Jerome Taylor today said the upcoming series against India would give him an opportunity to prove himself and help his career. "This might be a good series for me. If I give a good account of myself against one of the top ranking teams like India, that would actually boost my confidence and would help my career move forward," Taylor said in a media interaction.
"When I look at the Indian team and their batting line-up, yes you will be put under pressure, but you have to spend hours in the field if you want to hit the strap as soon as possible. So we need to be consistent, bowl on one side of the wicket be patient," he added.
Taylor said if the visitors manage to get a few victories under their belt, then it would hold them in good stead. "If you are coming to play a series, it doesn't make sense if you are not coming to win. We are here to win and we are going to try our best to win. India is a very strong team, so if we can get a win or two, it would be good for us," he said.
The 30-year-old had played a Test in 2009 before being plagued by a spate of injuries and since his return to the side in June, he has picked up 18 wickets in five Tests. Asked if he contemplated retiring from the game during the two and a half years when he was injured, the Jamaican said he never thought about it.
"First of all, that thought never crossed my mind. It was more of physical challenge than a mental one. I have undergone a lot of stuff to get back to this point. It was a lot of work in the back end and it worked okay for me," he said.
Asked if returning from injury was a challenge, Taylor said, "I don't think it's much of a challenge. What I do is try to listen to my body and use that as a guide going forward. Your body will tell you whenever something is wrong or right, and as a competitor, you cannot be afraid of expressing yourself in the park.
"Yes, it is going to stay in the back of your mind, but if you let that take over, then it's going to hurt so much. I am somebody who likes to express himself and if an injury comes in, I deal with it," he said.
Taylor's team-mate Darren Bravo said it would be a tough series against India but his team was confident of doing well. "I am looking forward to the one-day series against India. We know it is going to be a tough series for us as a team. We are quietly confident that we will do well," the left-handed batsman said.
The 25-year-old said that comparisons with Brian Lara did add to the pressure sometimes. "Whenever I step out to bat, everyone is expecting a lot. I can only go out there and try my best. Sometimes I my best is going to be 100, 10 or 5. The pressure is always there to perform. I just want to gout there and enjoy my cricket. It's very important not to give up a fight. Learn from my mistakes as quickly as possible," he said.
The Windies have not been at their best in the last two visits to the country but Bravo brushed it off and said it was a new tour. "There was disappointment for us when we came here last. At the same time that's gone. Now it's a new year and new guys in the team are excited and looking forward to the challenge. We need to believe, work hard in our practice, support each other in each and every single way, live together like one big happy family and be happy for one another's success, I believe we are going to do very well here," he said.
The Trinidadian also felt that the absence of explosive opener Chris Gayle would mean that a youngster would get the opportunity to prove himself. "He's definitely our best batsman in the one-day format. He's not here, but another youngster gets an opportunity to make a name for himself. So it's exciting time for us as a team," he said. Opening batsman Lendl Simmons felt India would have an advantage.
"Of course there is home advantage. There is crowd, there are good pitches that the Indian batsmen are very good on, they are accustomed to batting on good pitches.
"We don't have good surfaces like India at the Caribbean. There is home advantage in the sense that you have good spinners like (Ravichandran) Ashwin and (Ravindra) Jadeja and some seam bowling as well so I think there is bit of home advantage," the 29-year-old said.