DUBAI, UAE (CMC): All-rounder Carlos Brathwaite has his eyes fixed on being a match-winner for West Indies in the Twenty20 World Cup starting next week, and believes his skill set could be valuable in the team’s success. The 27-year-old has emerged as a strong attacking lower-order batsman and tidy seamer, and proved a revelation on the recent Test tour of Australia with a couple of half-centuries. Brathwaite said while his batting was currently ahead of his bowling, he was working hard to produce in both areas, to earn West Indies positive results in the March 8 to April 3 ICC event in India. “In T20, fortunately, I have the option of both [batting and bowling], but some days you go well with the ball … and some days it’s not so good with the ball, but then you have a chance to make up with the bat, so being an all-rounder is a plus,” Brathwaite said yesterday. “I’m striking the ball really nicely at the moment. My batting is probably just ahead of my bowling for the time being but hopefully, at least for one or two games in the World Cup, both of them come together nicely to win a game for West Indies.” TEST DEBUT On Test debut last December in Melbourne, Brathwaite struck an impressive 59 in the second Test batting at number eight, and then followed up with a whirlwind 69 off 66 balls in the final Test at Sydney. On the tour of Sri Lanka last October, the right-hander blasted 113 off 58 balls against the Sri Lanka President’s XI in a 50-over game. Brathwaite, a late call-up to the Windies T20 World Cup squad because of injury to Kieron Pollard, said he always backed his ability regardless of the result. “I’m pretty confident in my skills. I know once I go out there and execute the plans that I’ve set for myself and the targets that I’ve set, I’ll be successful,” he pointed out. While Brathwaite’s batting has been coming along well, he also remains a threat with the ball and picked up three wickets in the second unofficial warm-up T20 against Zimbabwe in Sharjah last Monday. He said one of his aims on the current tour was to lift his bowling. “I’m trying a few things in the nets. I’m trying to bowl a bit quicker. It’s been working thus far and long may it continue,” he explained. “The situation of the [Zimbabwe] game was more suited to my style of bowling – more containment rather than attacking – and I was just fortunate and lucky to get the three wickets which I was happy about.”
Unable to meet the “commercial demands” of the main organisers, IMG, Chennai Open is set to move out of the city after 21 years and Pune is likely to host India’s only ATP World Tour event from next year.Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA) Secretary General CBN Reddy said they will make an official announcement on the development tomorrow but another official, who did not wish to be named, confirmed that the event is moving out of city.”We can’t meet the commercial demands of the IMG,” said the official on the condition of anonymity adding without elaborating.The reason is surprising since the Tamil Nadu government has been supporting the event for long and IMG had even extended the contract with TNTA for three more years recently.”But it’s not a setback. We are premier state association and will remain,” the TNTA official asserted.It has been learnt that IMG, the owners of the tournament, were considering to take the event out of the country but is likely to settle for Pune as the next hosts.IMG officials could not contacted for comment.The state associations of Karnataka and Gujarat were also in the race but Maharashtra State Lawn Tennis Association (MSLTA) has emerged favourites to win the bid as the state government has passed a resolution to support the event.Chennai has been hosting the event since 1996 and legends such as Rafael Nadal have been part of the tournament, which is organised in the lead up to the Australian Open.advertisementMSLTA officials did not deny or confirm the development but sources in the association claim that Pune is going to be the next host of the tournament.”IMG were considering Singapore as one of the possible venues but we wanted to keep it in India, keeping the interest of the Indian players in mind. It is India’s event and it should remain in the country,” the source said.MSLTA has been successfully hosting a USD 50,000 Challenger event since 2014 and the tennis facility at the Balewadi Sports Complex is well-equipped to host an ATP 250 event.AITA Secretary General Hironmoy Chatterjee said, “The tournament is IMG’s property and they have every right to host it where they find it more lucrative.”India have been struggling badly to host even ATP Challenger tournaments. This year Delhi Open has not been held so far despite AITA promising to host the event.The Sports Ministry recently snubbed AITA but refusing to sponsor ITF and ATP tournaments, saying it was Federation’s responsibility to raise funds and organise tournaments.