With less than three months to go until the new season, Ravi Rampaul says he is ready for the challenge and wants to play a leading role in contributing to wins for Derbyshire.
The former West Indies seamer, who joined on a three-year deal from Surrey in October, has played in 133 international matches and 232 domestic fixtures during his career to date, taking 762 wickets across all forms.
In an exclusive interview with derbyshireccc.com, the pace bowler was clear that he has much to offer with the ball and has the ambition to hunt for silverware with Derbyshire.
He said: “I was delighted to be given the opportunity to join Derbyshire, and to have a three-year contract to really make a contribution to the Club.
“I still have a lot to achieve as a cricketer. I have a lot of goals I want to reach, so hopefully this time with Derbyshire helps me to achieve these.
“I like being given responsibility and I’m really looking forward to helping lead the line and hopefully this brings out my best cricket and contributes to wins for Derbyshire.
“My ultimate goal is to contribute to the Club being promoted to Division One of the County Championship. I know it is an ambitious Club and that should be our main aim.”
The experienced bowler is a proven wicket-taker at the highest level and he hopes to use this knowledge to improve his own game and also contribute to the development of the younger bowlers.
He added: “My experience will help the younger players in the team and hopefully during the three years I can help Derbyshire to continue progressing.
“Three years means I can spend a lot of time at the Club, which will help my game and also the young players. I’m really looking forward to the challenge, but also to the friendships I’ll be making.
“I’m young at heart still and although I’m experienced now, I still have a lot to offer with the ball and I hope to learn from my time in Derby as well.”
Despite favouring the longer forms of the game, Rampaul has seen success across the game, most recently steering Surrey to the Royal London One-Day Cup final in 2018, claiming 18 wickets at an average of 24. He wants to use his variation and experience to bolster the bowling unit and target silverware in the shorter formats.
He said: “I prefer the longer format of the game. It really tests your ability as a player, rather than the shorter formats when you can get away with certain things.
“In four-day cricket you have to work out the batsmen and it shows your skills and thinking as a player.
“I’ve played a lot of ODIs and I am experienced in that format too, so I want to share my experience with the guys. Our aim, as a bowling unit, will be to bowl sides out cheaply and let our batsmen come through with the runs.
“If you want to play the three formats you have to change your style and adapt your bowling, and I think this is something I’ve done well.
“The team also did well in the T20 Blast competition last year, so we will aim to improve in that format and ultimately aim to win it.”
Accustomed to English conditions, the 33-year-old is yet to play at The 3aaa County Ground in his career, but he is looking forward to the new campaign and putting in performances in front of good crowds in Derby.
He said: “There’s a lot of swing in England and it’s nice and cool, rather than in the Caribbean and you can bowl longer spells. I’ve not played in Derby before, but I’ve enjoyed playing in England and I’m really looking forward to the summer.
“Fans help you and cheer you on to perform your best, so I hope to get to know as many of them in the cricket family and we have an enjoyable three years.”
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