Shivnarine Chanderpaul is looking forward to the challenge as Derbyshire embark on their first season back in the top flight for 13 years, and believes his experience can help a young Derbyshire squad flourish in Division One.
The 38-year-old arrived in the UK on Saturday and took part in Derbys recent two day friendly against Notts at the County Ground scoring an unbeaten 31, which included three sixes from the final over of the innings.
The world’s number two Test batsman is today travelling down to Birmingham as part of the matchday squad and he insists that he is fully prepared for the start of the new season, which begins tomorrow at Edgbaston against Warwickshire.
“I am looking forward to the first game of the season,” he said. “The squad have had a good pre-season and we enjoyed a good warm-up match against Notts yesterday.
“It was good to get some time out in the middle before the first game. Coming from the Caribbean, it was a good opportunity to get used to the English conditions and it was good to get bat on ball here in these conditions.
“My role is obviously with the bat and I hope to help as much as I can, especially with the young guys we have here. The hunger, the passion is still there. I just love the game and I want to play to help the side achieve success on the field.
"If you are playing, you have to perform and that's what it's all about. Anybody can perform and anybody cannot. It happens sometimes where you do and sometimes you don't but it happens to everybody.
"You just take pride in keeping preparing yourself and work as hard as you can to get yourself mentally and physically ready to go out there so that when you are out on the park, you are ready for it."
Chanderpaul, a veteran of 146 Tests and over 10,000 Test runs to his name for West Indies, has committed his immediate future to the Club after signing a two-year contract, and he is looking forward to the challenge of working with a young talented Derbyshire side.
"I have gained a lot of experience over the years and I'll hopefully pass on some of it to the young fellas," he said. “From what I am seeing so far, there is a lot of talent, but we need some big scores. Some are getting them but others have to convert small scores into big scores also.
"They are young and sometimes you tend to play too many shots when you are young and you just need to curb it a little bit. Play what you see.
"It's going to be a little tougher and there a lot of good bowlers out there, maybe a little faster than in the second league. The guys did very well last year to get up to the next level, they are hungry and they want to do well in the next level also.
"Whatever I can do to help, I will try my best. We have a bunch of young fellas and I'm excited to be a part of it and play with these guys."
Derbyshire begin life back in the LV= CC top flight against reigning champions Warwickshire at Edgbaston, beginning tomorrow at 11am.
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