Windies warm-upsST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC):West Indies will use unofficial Twenty20 games against minnows Zimbabwe in Sharjah as part of their preparation for next month’s T20 World Cup in India, the West Indies Cricket Board announced yesterday. The Caribbean side will take on Zimbabwe on Saturday and then again next Monday, with both games slated for the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. West Indies are currently in Dubai for a preparation camp ahead of the March 8 to April 3 T20 World Cup.They will also play two T20s against English County team Warwickshire at the ICC Global Cricket Academy on March 4 and again two days later. Following the fixtures, West Indies will fly to Kolkata on March 7, where they play official warm-up games against India on March 10 and against Australia on March 13.West Indies have been drawn in Group One of the Super 10 preliminary round stage, where they will face England, South Africa and Sri Lanka.The group will be completed by either Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Scotland or Zimbabwe, who do battle in a pre-tournament round of qualifiers.WI Women winWest Indies Women defeated South Africa Women by 16 runs in the opening One-Day International of the three-match series at Buffalo Park here yesterday.Scores: WEST INDIES WOMEN 214 for seven off 50 overs (Hayley Matthews 56, Britney Cooper 55 not out, Deandra Dottin 28, Shemaine Campbelle 26; Dane van Niekerk 2-25, Shabnim Ismail 2-40, Sune Luus 2-50). SOUTH AFRICA WOMEN 198 all out off 48.5 overs (Marizanne Kapp 69 not out, Trisha Chetty 47, Shabnim Ismail 34; Deandra Dottin 5-34, Shaquana Quintyne 2-15, Anisa Mohammed 2-36).FIFA reduces bans for Blatter, PlatiniZURICH (AP):Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini had their bans from soccer reduced from eight years to six by FIFA’s appeal body yesterday, two days before the sport’s ruling body tries to turn the page on years of scandals by electing a new president. Blatter and Platini were initially found guilty of wrongdoing by FIFA’s independent ethics committee, which is led by a German judge, over a previously-secret 2011 financial transaction.Platini, the UEFA president, said not being cleared was an “insulting decision, shameful and a denial of rights” and announced he will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.Blatter, as FIFA president, authorised a payment of 2 million Swiss francs ($2 million) to Platini, which was found to be unethical and a conflict of interest. But following hearings last week, an in-house appeal committee comprising members of federations voting in tomorrow’s presidential election decided to relax the suspensions. The committee is headed by Larry Mussenden of Bermuda, who is currently campaigning to win a May vote to become president of CONCACAF and a FIFA vice president.Djokovic wins 700th career matchDUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP):Novak Djokovic earned his 700th career match win at the expense of Tunisian wild card Malek Jaziri 6-1, 6-2 at the Dubai Championships yesterday. Djokovic, who joined the tour a decade ago, has a 700-146 career match record.He’s one of three active players to reach 700 wins, the others being Roger Federer with 1,067, and Rafael Nadal on 775.”Sounds like I played many matches in my career,” a smiling Djokovic told the crowd.
Akan’s Track Club’s Javon Francis was fastest in the men’s 400 metres, winning his heat in 46.39. Jonia McDonald of MVP was second in 46.48, with UTech’s Twayne Crooks third in 46. 52. Michael Frater clocked 10.60 seconds in 2.4 metres per second wind in the men’s 100 metres. However, Julian Forte stole the spotlight. Running in -1.6 mps wind, he clocked 10.28. Sprint Tech’s Rasheed Dwyer was second overall in 10.43, while MVP’s Andrew Fisher was third with 10.50. Former World Youth 400m hurdles champion Marvin Williams of UTech had a top time of 51.88 seconds. Second overall was Dwayne Extol of Eagles Track Club, in 52.27, with Andre Peart of MVP third in 52.41. St Jago High’s Keenan Lawrence took the men’s Open 800m 1:52.66, defeating UTech’s Trey Graham (1:53.99). Edwin Allen and Jamaica College (JC) captured the high school sprint relays. Edwin Allen won the girls’ event in 45.05 seconds ahead of Excelsior High (45.78), while JC clocked 40.59 seconds in winning the boys’ event ahead of Excelsior (41.50). UTech’s Orlando Thomas won the men’s javelin with 16.56m; UTech’s Tajay Gayle won the men’s long jump with 7.25m; while Geneva Greaves took the women’s shot put with 14.37m. WORLD 200 metres silver medallist Elaine Thompson produced a world-leading 11.07 seconds in the women’s 100 metres at the Senior Link-Up track and field meet at Stadium East yesterday morning. Thompson joined the United States Morolake Akinosun atop the world list after her win a week ago in Texas. Thompson sprinted away from a competitive line-up to post her impressive time as Anneisha McLaughlin Whilby was some way off in second spot in 11.41 seconds, with her training partner at Sprint Tech, Audra Segree, third in 11.45. Ronda Whyte returned to competition in style, scoring an impressive win in the women’s 400 metres hurdles. Whyte stopped the clock at 56.1 seconds, defeating Shannon Kallawan (56.3) and overseas-based Sparkle McKnight (56.6), who is a part of the MVP Track Club. Nikita Tracey, who also competes for MVP, was fourth in 57.3. Janieve Russell clocked 51.79 seconds in to win the women’s 400m ahead of Namibia’s Tjipekapora Herunga (52.03), representing MVP Track Club, and her training partner, Jody Muir (53.00). World 400 metres finalist, Stephenie McPherson, was too good for teammates Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson in the 200m. McPherson won in 23.12 seconds ahead of Jackson (23.21), while Fraser-Pryce was third in 23.24. JAVON FRANCIS WIN
WESTERN BUREAU:Head of the Western Confederation Referee Group, Nakassa Martin, has expressed shock and outrage at the callous reaction by the response of some supporters to the unfortunate injury suffered by referee Raymond Bogle, during Thursday’s Red Stripe Premier League football match between Montego Bay United and Waterhouse.Bogle collapsed in an accidental collision with Waterhouse midfielder Evan Taylor in the second half of their pulsating match at Wespow Park.The FIFA referee, who lost consciousness momentarily, had to be rushed by ambulance to the Cornwall Regional Hospital, where it was revealed he had sustained a broken rib.The match, which ended in a 3-1 victory for MoBay United, was completed by fourth official Danion Parchment, who took over duties in the middle.Bogle’s injury has thrown the role of match officials into the spotlight, as according to Martin, constant and often unwarranted verbal abuse, while commonplace in the sport, must not be confused for partisan support of any team.”There a plenty hazards out there on the field for referees. He is the most hated man at a football game, even though his job is perhaps the most significant,” noted Martin.”As a referee, charged with being fair, holding no personal bias one way or the other in the officiating of whichever match he or she is assigned to, we work under very stressful and oftentimes violent conditions,” added Martin.Injuries to referees while conducting their assignment, he said, does happen, but reasoned that the way it is treated cannot be ignored.The reluctance of the Wespow management to have the waiting ambulance traverse a section of the playing surface, while being standard, cannot be at the expense of a life, argued Martin.”A life, any life, is far more important than anything else. Bogle could have died right. I gather he lost consciousness for a while and had to be rushed across the expanse of the field. I think sometimes we could be a little more caring,” reasoned Martin.Moments before the incident, Bogle was bundled over when a clearance out of defence by an MBU defender struck him. That brought some laughter from spectators, but the more severe injury he suffered did not change their outlook.”It goes to show how little regard referees do get while on the job. We are not expecting an easy ride, but respect and knowledge of the game on the supporters’ part must be addressed. Referees are humans too,” declared Martin.
With what is happening in the UAE and to West Indies cricket in general, it is good to hear of some good plans for sport in Jamaica, especially for the celebration of sports in the Caribbean. Jamaica, right now and for years gone by, has been a little giant in the world sports arena. From the deeds of champions past to champions present, Jamaica is a home of champions. Indeed, aided and abetted by Jamaica’s greatness in so many sports, by the greatness of Jamaicans domiciled around the globe, by the greatness of Jamaicans in sports foreign to Jamaicans, and by the presence of so many world champions, including the fastest man and woman in the world, Jamaica can be easily described as the place for sports in the world. Jamaica, however, needs to parade before the world their stars, and, unselfishly, the stars of the Caribbean as well. The news, therefore, that the London-based Jamaican Al Hamilton is attempting to stage his prestigious event, the Caribbean Awards Sports Icons (CASI), in Jamaica sometime next year is wonderful. The CASI awards was first held in Jamaica in 2008. It was then held in the Bahamas in 2009, and after two disappointing attempts to hold it in Barbados and in Guyana, it was held last year in Antigua at the Sandals Grande Antigua Resort. Last year, the awards went to people like Sir Everton Weekes – Barbados, cricket; Dr Cynthia Thompson – Jamaica, athletics; Maurice Hope – Antigua, boxing; Kim Collins – St Kitts, athletics; and to Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce – Jamaica, athletics. Jamaica has the prestigious annual RJR Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards, but this one is for Caribbean icons. It would be nice if Jamaica hosted it, and in doing so, say thanks to the likes of Sir Garry Sobers, Hasely Crawford, Michael Holding, Brian Lara, and his good friend Dwight Yorke for their lovely contribution to Caribbean sports. Hosting CASI would fall in line with Jamaica’s wonderful image in sports, and help in the marketing of sports. CELEBRATING THE CARIBBEAN The West Indies went down by 133 runs to Pakistan in the second Test in Abu Dhabi last Tuesday, and with one match to go in the three-match series, find themselves in the embarrassing position of possibly losing the three-way contest, the 20-overs, the 50-overs, and the Test series by a whopping 9-0 margin. And to rub salt into the wound, all the defeats, with the possible exception of the previous one in Dubai, which now appears something of a passing mirage, was by huge, uncontested margins. The reason offered for the defeats have been the usual ‘beating horse’ of poor and careless batting by the batsmen, and with hardly any exception. The bowling, however, has proven to be just as poor as the batting, if not sometimes worse. Every now and again a bowler, just like the batsmen, turns up with a performance to tickle the imagination or to provide some semblance of hope. That hope, however, just like the one presented by Devendra Bishoo and Darren Bravo in Dubai recently, always dies as soon as it appears. On that occasion, after Pakistan had rattled up 579 for three declared, Bishoo’s eight wickets for 49 runs and Bravo’s innings of 116 took the West Indies to within 12 overs of saving the game and to within 56 runs of winning it. This time a first innings score of 452 matched by a second innings score of 227 for three declared was enough to win easily, despite a knock of 95 by Jermaine Blackwood and a West Indies second innings of 327 off 108 overs. Once again, I am at a loss to find out what went wrong, to find the cause of the now accustomed batting and bowling, and fielding, failures of the West Indies team. This time, however, Pakistani captain, the experienced and knowledgeable Misbah-ul-Haq, may have given the West Indies the answer, an answer which I have known, and have expressed, for a long, long time, ever since the Windies plunge in world cricket at the end of the last century. Others, including the late great West Indies batsman Clyde Walcott, shared the same sentiments that the problem with West Indies cricket, since the turn of the century, was that the majority of West Indies cricketers believed they were better than they were actually. The Indian commentators hinted of the same situation when, in the last series, they spoke about West Indian batsmen playing down the wrong line, playing forward when they should be playing back, and driving when they should be blocking. The real problem is that sometimes, most times, the West Indies play as if they are really better than they are, and most times they pay the penalty. Speaking after Tuesday’s match, Misbah-ul-Haq said that bowling on the slow batting friendly pitches in United Arab Emrates “is difficult” and “getting 20 wickets is always a challenge”. Misbah-ul-Haq went on to say, “I believe you go there and assess conditions and play within your resources. You work out how you are going to conduct your game plan. If you stay within your limits and execute your plan according to your strength, then no matter what the conditions are, you could be successful.” He also said that Pakistan’s spinners are their strength, they were “expecting a turning and spinning wicket but this pitch had nothing for the bowlers. Today it was the fifth day and it still was flat and didn’t do much.” Pakistan have been criticised for slow batting in the UAE but their plan is to win. In their last 11 Tests played there, they have won all 11. Nobody really remembers slow batting, once it is not too slow, when your first three scores in one-day matches are centuries, when you score an undefeated triple century in Test cricket, when your team comes up with scores like 579 for three declared, 452, and 227 for two declared, and when you win matches comfortably. It is nice, especially when the opposing team fails to challenge these scores and lose easily after playing on the same “slow and batting friendly” pitches, the pitches on which both the batsmen and the bowlers of the losing team always complain. Today, the West Indies take on Pakistan in Sharjah in the last match of the series, and the hope is that they will end the contest in style and avoid the embarrassment of a 9-0 whitewash.
The administrators of sports in Jamaica seem to have a problem with any member of their organisation speaking out about any perceived problem. Whenever there is a report of a ‘problem’ the administrators complain bitterly about “a process” whereby complaints can be resolved internally. They are eerily silent when it is revealed that the ‘problem’ had been previously discussed ad nauseam internally, without any tangible move being made to resolve the problem. So, frustrated, an interview is given, a document leaked, and then wholescale wringing of the hands, as the offending individual is disciplined/sanctioned. Oh dear! What can the matter be? The answer seems to lie in the sense of entitlement that comes with the elevation of these men and women to positions of power. Every acceptance speech by an administrator who has sought the position, and won, speaks glibly about ‘communication’ with players, officials, and fans. Yet, whenever ‘problems’ surface, the frustrated complainer, being human, fails to follow point by point ‘the process’ and out he/she goes, while the ‘problem’ remains and festers. Winning in any sport tends to allow ‘problems’ to be ignored or papered over, but when the team begins losing over and over again, and the fingers of the fans begin pointing, searching for the person(s) responsible for the poor run of results, this is where our administrators hunker down, dropping players, firing coaches, daring any member of the losing team to go public. Whatever happened to the administrator who spoke at his/her inauguration? Power – power that has unmasked a character flaw which is much too painful to admit. I do believe that the four most popular sports in Jamaica are Horse racing, football, track and field and netball. We lead the world in track and field not because we have good administrators, but because we have world-class athletes. I fear the post-Bolt era of track and field because that is when the ‘problems’ cannot be papered over or ignored, and if not corrected, no longer will be comfortable with the moniker ‘sprint capital’ of the world. In football, persistent and financially embarrassing losses have caused the leader of our nation’s football to finally come to the realisation that the future of local football lies in the development of LOCAL talent. RELENTLESS FALL DOWN In netball, a relentless fall down the world ranking has finally caused the administrator of that sport to look in the direction of LOCAL coaches to guide our world-class talent to the pinnacle of world netball. Hopefully, soon, gender bias will also go the way of dependency on foreign coaches, bringing the results that the fans crave. In cricket, the Trump-like thin-skinned qualities of the leadership – who insist on foreign leadership that is obviously alienating any player whose self-belief made him a world-rated player – is not helping the team. Tony Becca, in his column on Sunday, pointed out the dual roles of President Dave Cameron and technical director of cricket Richard Pybus. Tony is so right when he articulates a question that has been dogging West Indian fans as star after star is ushered from representing us, the people of the region. “How can a non-West Indian stop a West Indian player from representing the West Indies, regardless of the circumstances.” Maybe that question is what led Mr Cameron to agree to do that interview on SportsMax, falsely hoping to give the impression that there is some West Indian input into what is going on with our stars. I do hope that the refusal of Jamaican James Adams to renew his English coaching contract means that he is considering coming back home to rescue West Indian cricket. What a wonderful director of West Indian cricket he would be!
Mico University College repeated their performance of a year ago by winning the treble in intercollegiate netball after a 59-48 overtime win in the intermediate A final last Saturday over home team G.C. Foster B.The intermediate champions blew away G.C. Foster by 24 goals in preliminary action two weeks ago, but it was a more determined G.C. Foster College team which played the final. Mico led 11-10, 21-17 and 30-28 after three quarters. However, G.C. Foster fought hard in the fourth quarter as, spurred on by their vocal home supporters, they rallied to even the score at 43-43 at the end of the quarter, sending the game into overtime.In the two periods of overtime, it was all Mico as the Connie Francis and Janet Guy-coached team led 52-44 after the first stanza before pulling away for a comfortable 11-goal winning margin in the end.Mico’s two other titles came over the past two weeks. The senior team defeated UWI in the final last Thursday while the junior team had earlier beaten G.C. Foster in the intermediate B final.Excelsior Community College finished third in the intermediate A competition after stopping UWI B 32-26 in the playoff for third and fourth.
Jamaica Scorpions were dismissed for 56 in their Digicel WICB Four-day Tournament cricket match at Sabina Park tonight.The Robert Samuels-coached aggregation were bowled out shortly after tea.Earlier in the low scoring match, Scorpions fast bowler Jerome Taylor claimed five for 31 to help dismiss the Hurricanes for 71 in their first innings, giving them a lead of 15.Openers Shacaya Thomas and Chadwick Walton, made one and 12, respectively, Jermaine Blackwood, two, Andre McCarthy, 13, Brandon King, six, Rovman Powell, eight, and Jerome Taylor, one.Fast bowlers Gavin Tonge, four for 16, and Jeremy Louis, four for four, were the destroyers for the visitors.The game got underway today after rain and a wet outfield forced an abandonment of Friday’s scheduled opening day.
BRIGHTENED OUTLOOK The win has brightened Gaye’s outlook for this season. “Well, I’m looking forward to the World Championships, World University Games,” he quietly projected. “Just want to go to the Trials and make my mark there.” Weakened by Zika, he was eliminated in the semi-finals at the Trials, also known at the National Senior Championships, last year. Junelle Bromfield, the University of Technology star, followed up her recent Carifta Games 400m win with a season’s best time of 52.37 seconds, to edge Anastasia Le-Roy in the women’s equivalent. In other highlights, Olympic and World 400m bronze medal winner Shericka Jackson turned up for some speed work and set a personal best of 11.24 seconds in the 100m. O’Dayne Richards, Jackson’s MVP Track Club teammate and fellow World bronze medallist, extended his best shot put distance of 2017 to 20.74m. Demish Gaye delighted a small band of devoted track and field fans at the first JAAA All Comers meet with a winning 400m run of 44.85 seconds inside the National Stadium on Saturday. Gaye, the two-time Inter-Collegiate champion, broke through the 45 second barrier for the first time. The G.C. Foster College student-athlete indicated that the run is the result of his training which he says is going very well. The time lowered his personal best from 45.24 seconds, and is the fastest time by a Jamaican this year. “That gives me a lot of confidence,” he said of his performance. Running strongly from the start, Gaye resisted the mid-race surge of national champion Javon Francis to win. Speaking breathlessly after the race, he said: “Training has been going well and I’m healthy right now, and I just want to keep it that way for the rest of the season.” That was a reference to last season when an ill-timed bout of the Zika virus ruined his Olympic campaign. Francis, who emerged from the recent IAAF World Relays with an injury niggle, was timed in 46.52 seconds.
NEW DELHI, India (CMC):Factions of the Indian Cricket Board (BCCI) want pressure brought to bear on the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) for its lack of support in the recent vote regarding the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) new governance structure and revenue-sharing model.At an ICC board meeting in Dubai last month, the BCCI found itself standing alone as nine other countries voted in support of the governance structure. On the contentious revenue-sharing model, India found support only from the Sri Lankan board, as they lost 8-2 on vote.Sections of the BCCI now want joint secretary Amitabh Chaudhary to speak to WICB President Dave Cameron about the recent ICC votes, as there is a belief the Caribbean board was not held accountable enough for the decision of the one-day side to abruptly abandon the tour here three years ago.”We let the West Indies Cricket Board go scot-free back in 2014 after they pulled out midway,” a senior BCCI official, who requested anonymity, told the Press Trust of India.”We claimed damages of US$42 million, but that was also waived by Shashank Manohar after he became the BCCI president for the second time. Now they (WICB) have also voted against us at ICC board. We need to look at these aspects.”The BCCI suspended bilateral ties with West Indies and also lodged the multimillion-dollar claim against the WICB back in November 2014, after the team walked off the tour earlier the same month following the fourth ODI, stemming from a players’ pay dispute with the board.However, the matter was settled amicably following talks between the WICB and the new Manohar-led BCCI, with the entities agreeing future bilateral tours.DISCUSSIONS NEEDEDIn fact, only yesterday, the BCCI confirmed India’s six-match limited tour of the Caribbean starting next month, but the senior BCCI official said the only entity benefiting from the arrangement was the WICB.”There has to be some discussions with Cameron and WICB as to what their viewpoint is on governance,” the official continued.”In any case, it’s the WICB which gains if we go [on the tour]. Before the ICC Annual Conference, it would be great if Amitabh speaks to their cricket board.”India toured the Caribbean last year for four Tests and also played West Indies in a two-match Twenty20 series in Florida.
Arellano U coach Jerry Codiñera feels having home court advantage under the new format of NCAA Season 93 could be a double-edged sword.ADVERTISEMENT 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Duterte’s ‘soft heart’ could save ABS-CBN, says election lawyer Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite MOST READ LIVE: Sinulog 2020 Grand Parade LATEST STORIES End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Duterte’s ‘soft heart’ could save ABS-CBN, says election lawyer The Stags pushed the Red Lions to the limit before fading down the stretch in a 76-67 loss last Saturday.But there were plenty of encouraging signs for coach Egay Macaraya as Michael Calisaan, RK Ilagan and Enzo Navarro worked well together for large parts of the game, giving the Stags a boost on both ends of the floor.Still, their efforts were not enough to lift the Stags, who got outrebounded, 54-32, by the Lions.“The character of the players is there,” said Macaraya. “We don’t have the tallest of players but the energy and effort is there. We’re going to get better as the season goes on.”The Stags will have to deal with fleet-footed guard Kent Salado, who led the Chiefs with 24 points against the Cardinals.ADVERTISEMENT IT happens: Facebook sorry for Xi Jinping’s name mistranslation “We can’t take them (Stags) for granted,” said Salado.The San Sebastian Staglets and the Junior Chiefs meet in the first game at 2 p.m.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Blu Girls turn back hosts in Canada Cup While he’s glad that his players will be in familiar territory, the PBA legend turned mentor is also wary that the same scenario could throw off the players and make them overconfident.That’s why he’s quick to remind his Chiefs to maximize that advantage when they host the San Sebastian Stags at 4 p.m. Thursday at Arellano Gym in Manila.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’“It helps to have home court advantage because we’re familiar with the gym and we have to utilize that,” said Codiñera, whose Chiefs prevailed over the Mapua Cardinals, 91-82, last Saturday.“But we shouldn’t bank on our home court alone. We have to outwork them too because we know what San Sebastian is capable of especially after watching them give San Beda problems.” Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Missile-capable frigate BRP Jose Rizal inches closer to entering PH Navy’s fleet Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ Malacañang open to creating Taal Commission View comments