Andre Russell, the West Indies all-rounder, has been in phenomenal batting form in the Indian Premier League 2019. He has scored 392 runs in 10 matches so far with a batting average of 65.33. Russell also holds the record of hitting most sixes in IPL 2019 so far. He has hit 41 sixes so far in tournament.
Andre Russell told that the reason behind his power hitting abilities is Chris Gayle motivation. In an interview to BBC’s Doosra podcast, he said “Chris Gayle changed my life in terms of power hitting. I’ve learned a lot from him. I used to use lighter bats, but when you make contact with a light bat, it doesn’t go anywhere. During the World Cup, he came to me and said, Russ, you’re better than that. You can use bigger bats, you’re strong. 2016, when we won the [T20] World Cup in India, that year changed my life. That semi-final onwards, where I scored 48 runs for West Indies. Now my bats are bigger. There’s a lot of mechanics behind my bats, I play around with them a lot.”
The other main reason behind Andre Russell power hitting as per him is NFL (National Football League). He said that watching NFL players in the United States gave him a unique perspective on power training. According to him, he ended up developing smart training methods after observing them in Dallas, and now has a personalised gym plan.
Andre Russell said
“I work out like NFL players. When I went to Dallas a few years ago, that kind of changed my life into seeing how professional athletes in different sport go about their game. These guys train hard, high intensity. Even if they weren’t doing heavy weights, they were doing a lot of repetition. That’s what I use: I don’t need to get big and bulky. If I get bulky, I will bowl slow and my arm speed will get slow while batting. You need to smart about how you train. “I train hard. I work hard in the gym, like a beast. A lot of power work because the stronger you are, the easier you’re going to hit certain balls.”
He was a bit generous also as he credited all his fabulous performances to KKR. He said “I owe all these performances to Kolkata. When I got banned in 2017, I was depressed. I do not cry easily, but to see Venky Mysore [KKR CEO] take up the phone and say they were going to retain me through that time, water filled my eyes. They know me, that’s the thing about family. I owe these performances to them.”