UFC fighters motivating KKR’s Andre Russell to be… | Cricket News

BENGALURU: As Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) got down to practice on Thursday, the focus was understandably on one man — Andre Russell. The towering Jamaican, who smashed a 25-ball 64 against Sunrisers Hyderabad in their season opener, looked as threatening as he did at the Eden Gardens.
As the 35-year-old sent the ball high into the stands, one couldn’t help but revisit his record at the venue.Chasing 206 for victory at the M Chinnaswamy stadium here in 2019, Russell’s unbeaten 13-ball 48 ensured KKR cruised home with five balls to spare.

Russell, a sought-after T20 exponent who went through a rough phase last year, returned leaner, fitter and lethal as ever.

On rediscovering his mojo, the West Indian said on Thursday, “I think it’s all about the mindset. I had some good seasons where I smashed it all over. I watched those videos and realised that I was clear in my thoughts towards every delivery. I allowed myself to be under pressure because I’ve been thinking too much.”
In the run-up to the T20 World Cup, Russell has also been working on his fitness, and the results are surely showing.
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“I’m feeling good. I have four packs so I’m working on the next two. I’m working on being leaner and lighter and it’s working for my body and shows in my performance as well. I like to watch the UFC fighters. To see those guys looking strong and lean is a motivation for me as well,” said the allrounder.
Russell has also focused on fine-tuning his batting skills.
“I was at the nets in Abu Dhabi and Sunil Narine mentioned something. Having a short stride is working for me. When I look at most big-hitters, they don’t have a big stride. Now I have a bit more time to play the ball,” he revealed.

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