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Carlos Brathwaite ready for lift-off at Bermuda Smash Invitational

Carlos Brathwaite opens his arms in celebration after scoring the winning runs in the ICC T20 World Cup final in 2016

Carlos Brathwaite, the hero of West Indies’ triumph in the 2016 ICC T20 World Cup, is promising to bring professionalism to the inaugural Bermuda Smash Invitational, which starts today at North Field, National Sports Centre.

Brathwaite arrived on the island at the weekend and was casting his eye over potential team-mates and rivals at Sea Breeze Oval on Sunday during the Premier Division match between St George’s and Western Stars.

The all-rounder, who has been assigned to Hamilton Hurricanes, is hopeful his experience will help steer his side to victory at the inaugural event.

“I’m going to bring professionalism,” Brathwaite told Bermuda Broadcasting Company’s Talking Sport programme on Monday.

“Even in the West Indies, that’s something we struggle with. I would look back to the first [Indian Premier League], when I was able to rub shoulders with Shoaib Malik. Kieron Pollard was in the West Indies team and years later I was able to lean on those players for guidance.

“Sometimes it’s not just what those players say, but what they do. Even at club level at home, after playing in England and other parts, I never get to thinking I’m better than anyone else.”

Also announcing his desire for success during the five-day tournament, with matches scheduled to be played today, tomorrow and both days of the weekend was first-round draft pick Zeko Burgess, whose 24-ball half-century and hostile spell of pace bowling reaped four wickets for St George’s last week and bodes well for Pembroke Panthers.

Pembroke play against early favourites Sandys Spartans in today’s opening match (1pm), while Smith’s Sixers take on Brathwaite’s Hurricanes in the late game (5pm).

“I’ve got a lot more to give,” said Burgess after Sunday’s performance. “It’s about building into it and taking some momentum into the tournament.”

The Bermuda Smash Invitational received a welcome funding boost ahead of the start of the competition, with Barbados Tourism Investment pledging financial support.

According to Jason Sukdeo, one of the event organisers, BTI is underwriting the three Barbadian players — Brathwaite, Raymon Reifer and Shamarh Brooks — in the four-team tournament.

“They are a tourism arm and, because we have three Barbados players, they are supporting the three players from Barbados,” Sukdeo said.

“I’m assuming they are a tourism authority similar to ours and they aproached us with a desire to support the Barbadian players. I said, ‘why not?’”

Also welcoming the involvement of a fellow Caricom member was Owen Darrell, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, whose department is also lending support to the new venture.

“What that goes to show is that this format of cricket, T20, is becoming very popular across the world,” Darrell said.

“We would have seen a couple of years ago when everybody got excited about the IPL featuring Jamaica’s Chris Gayle.

“Now we see cricket coming westward and with Barbados coming on board it shows that it’s an exciting time in the region for the sport.

“In a couple of weeks, the T20 World Cup starts and Barbados is actually hosting the final.

“So it is smart move by the Barbados Board of Tourism to support global events around the region and I fully expect that in our sales and marketing within the BTA, we will take notice of that and look to do the same.

“But what that does show is that this Bermuda Smash Invitational, even in their inaugural year, has caught the attention of individuals outside of Bermuda and that can only bode well for the development of sport in Bermuda.”



Pembroke Panthers v Sandys Spartans (1pm)

Smith’s Sixers v Hamilton Hurricanes (5pm)


Sandys Spartans v Hamilton Hurricanes (1pm)

Pembroke Panthers v Smith’s Sixers (5pm)


Hamilton Hurricanes v Pembroke Panthers (11am)

Sandys Spartans v Smith’s Sixers (3pm)


Third-place match (11am)

Final (5pm)

All matches to be played at North Field, National Sports Centre

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Published May 15, 2024 at 8:00 am (Updated May 15, 2024 at 6:53 pm)

Carlos Brathwaite ready for lift-off at Bermuda Smash Invitational

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