Western Bureau:Omar Wedderburn, the St Elizabeth Technical head coach, may have found the missing element in their game, which has seen them log two consecutive wins in the 2015 ISSA-Flow daCosta Cup, after a series of inconsistent performances.The inconsistency, according to Wedderburn, was as a result of poor playing surfaces that made the STETHS passing game, which features off-the-ball movement from his front men, including striker Michael Kerr, almost redundant.But the two matches played at home on what is arguably the best school ground in the daCosta Cup competition, STETHS have won both convincingly, with Kerr coming to the fore with seven goals scored.getting up to speed”Our struggles was a result of the kind surfaces on which we played; our game is a passing game, with good off-the-ball movement, but we are slowly getting up to speed with all that,” Wedderburn said.”Kerr is certainly in fine mettle at the moment and is always going to be a dangerous player for us, but today you saw how well he played within the system, and the passes were also there,” added Wedderburn.Kerr, popularly called ‘Diddy’ by his teammates, struck a fine four-timer in his team’s 6-0 gutting of Newell last Thursday, and followed that up with a fine hat-trick Saturday at home against group rivals Lacovia.The burly striker netted in the 29th, 66th and 75th minutes, respectively, to underline his importance to the STETHS cause.Now that the goals are coming, Wedderburn hopes it continues as they seek to remain ahead of the pack in the hunt for Group E honours and a place in the Inter-Zone round of the competition.Meanwhile, only one match is scheduled in the daCosta Cup for today, a Group I showdown between York Castle and Steer Town Academy.Steer Town, who are third in the group standings on seven points, are in need of victory against second-place York Castle (10 points). Both trail leaders Marcus Garvey High (12 pts), with Browns Town, Ocho Rios High and Cedric Titus completing the group.
CUTTACK, India (AP):Crowd trouble stretched the game, but South Africa finally prevailed by six wickets to take a winning 2-0 lead in the three-game Twenty20 series against India yesterday.Pace bowler Albie Morkel grabbed 3-12 to lead a disciplined bowling display as South Africa dismissed India for only 92 off 17.2 overs.”Look, it’s an easy job to be a captain when your bowlers perform like that,” South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis said. “I reckon it’s the best bowling performance we have had as a T20 team. It is Albie’s 50th game, and we are really proud of him for playing that many games. He was really clever with his lines.”India’s second-lowest score in T20s, after their 74 all out against Australia at Melbourne in 2008, led to the disappointed crowd throwing plastic bottles on to the ground.interruptionsIt led to two interruptions of 20 and 25 minutes during South Africa’s chase after the 11th and 13th overs of their innings.South Africa, which won the first game at Dharamsala by seven wickets, eventually coasted to 96-4 in 17.1 overs with Jean-Paul Duminy 30 not out.Off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, expected to be India’s trump card across formats during South Africa’s 72-day tour, shone with 3-24. However, India’s total was too little to give the visiting side a tough time.Ashwin had the satisfaction of dismissing big names Hashim Amla, A.B. de Villiers and du Plessis, but last-match hero Duminy followed up his 34-ball 68 not out at Dharamsala with another important innings.”I don’t think we played good cricket,” India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said. “There were not enough runs on the board. One thing is for sure, our spinners are bowling well and that has been our strength.”Earlier, the Indian innings stuttered in the face of some spot-on bowling and a couple of run-outs up the order.The final match of the series will be played in Kolkata on Thursday. It will be followed by five one-day internationals and four Tests.- AP
With next month’s IAAF World Indoor Championships overlapping with the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships (Champs), general secretary of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA), Garth Gayle, admits there are challenges, but is confident of putting together a strong team of athletes and officials in particular.The JAAA’s selection committee will meet shortly to select a team to represent Jamaica at the March 17-19 event, which takes place in Portland, USA, but with the interest-hogging ‘Champs’ taking place inside the National Stadium from March 15-19, filling the coaching and management positions on the delegation might provide some headaches for the administration.COACH AVAILABILITYGayle noted that most of the island’s top coaches and management representatives are deeply involved with high-school teams, which will be competing at Champs and are unlikely to be available for the World Indoor Championships.”Naturally, for sure, it (Jamaica’s World Indoor Championships selections) will be affected. Management personnel, for instance, is the first thing that comes to mind,” Gayle told The Gleaner yesterday.”Most of our renowned coaches are also very instrumental and involved with their alma mater, and you look at the press focus on Boys and Girls’ Champs, which is a major event on our calendar.”We have already started some work in looking at what could be a likely combination and try and get the best fit for the national team. Champs does come in at a crucial point, and I would use the world carefully, but it does clash with the World Indoors and provides some challenges,” Gayle admitted.He is, however, confident that the JAAA will be able to put together a strong support staff for the athletes travelling to represent the country in Portland.”We are confident that our discussions with local and international coaches will be positive, and we will be able to send a competent and experienced team of management to accompany the athletes,” said Gayle.Meanwhile, Gayle is expecting that the selection process will be completed well ahead of the February 29 deadline set by the IAAF, and shared that a number of athletes have already indicated their availability.DEADLINE”It seems close, given that the deadline is just a couple of weeks away, but it is not unusual for many of our elite athletes and their coaches to still be deciding whether or not they will be participating at the World Indoors at this point,” Gayle said. “What we know for sure is that we will have the best available team to go out and compete and represent Jamaica at the World Indoor Championships.”We have received indications from a number of athletes, but we can’t give any names at this moment; just to say that it’s not unusual that some of our most elite athletes and their coaches will be weighing the pros and cons, even at this point, especially in an Olympic year,” he added.Jamaica won five medals – one gold, two silver and two bronze – at the last IAAF World Indoor Championships in Sopot in 2014.
MUMBAI, India (CMC):West Indies go toe to toe with hosts and title favourites India in the second semi-final of the Twenty20 World Cup today in a game captain Darren Sammy has labelled a ‘David and Goliath’ battle.India, with the advantage of familiar conditions, the partisan home crowd and a convincing win over the Windies in the official pre-tournament warm-ups, enter the 7 p.m. (9:30 a.m. Eastern Caribbean time) contest at the Wankhede Stadium as heavy favourites.But West Indies, the 2012 champions, remain a huge threat, and Sammy said they were backing themselves to upset India.”The guys who predict the results say (the chances of winning) are 80-20 (in India’s favour), so it feels like a David and Goliath (battle), but people tend to forget David won the fight,” Sammy told reporters here yesterday.INDIAN LOVE”It’s something similar to that. We enjoy playing against India. A number of our players play here and we have a lot of respect for them. The camaraderie in the group in both teams is really good, so we’re looking forward to that, and what better place to play than here in Mumbai – one of the best wickets in India.”He added: “Once we believe among ourselves, it doesn’t matter what other people think. As a group, we believe in each other’s ability. We believe in the talent, and at the end of the day, cricket is played on the pitch.”You could talk all you want. I could talk a good game, but it’s the action on the pitch that really matters.”West Indies opened their Group One campaign with a convincing six-wicket victory over England before following up with positive results over Sri Lanka by seven wickets and South Africa by three wickets.Their only blemish came in the final game last Sunday against minnows Afghanistan, when they were stunned by six runs in Nagpur.West Indies lifted the T20 World Cup for the first time four years ago when they beat Sri Lanka in a thrilling final in Colombo. Two years later in Bangladesh, they went out in the semi-finals as Sri Lanka rebounded to win the title.HOPES FOR CLEAN SWEEPEarlier this year, West Indies Under-19s also won the ICC Youth World Cup in Bangladesh, and with West Indies Women also contesting their T20 World Cup semi-final against New Zealand Women today, Sammy said he was hoping for a clean sweep of titles for the Caribbean.”The Under-19 team started it in Bangladesh and both the men and the women’s teams took that as inspiration. Come tomorrow, we have two West Indian teams vying for a spot in the final,” he noted.”I really wish both the teams could go to the finals and win it, so 2016 could be the year where West Indies take home everything.”The guys in the dressing room are aware what is at stake. We came into the tournament and nobody gave us a chance. I said six steps to the World Cup. We have taken four … we have two more steps and tomorrow’s (today) step is against India. We are looking forward to it.”
In the male category, boxers qualify from three streams. There is AIBA Open boxing (AOB) which was formerly called AIBA amateur boxing, there is the World Series of Boxing (WSB) which is semi-professional team boxing and AIBA Professional Boxing (APB) which is their professional arm of the sport. As a result of this expansion, there have been several rule changes in the sport over the past few years and another important change seems to be in the offing. AIBA has stated that it believes that like many other sports, their professionals should be allowed to participate in the Olympics, but although the Games are not far away, it is still not clear how this is going to be done. AIBA has, however, called an Extraordinary General meeting on June 1, to be held in Lausanne, Switzerland, to discuss and vote on a proposal that would allow this to happen. AIBA Statute 13 (J) at this time effectively prohibits boxers who have competed in non-AIBA professional boxing from going to the Olympics. The proposal to be voted on at the meeting, is to delete this statute, which will in turn allow for professional boxers to participate. RULE CHANGES VALID ARGUMENTS Next to track and field, boxing is one of the most popular sports in the Olympic Games and over the past year, boxers from all over the world have been trying to qualify for the Games in Rio. The boxing programme will run from August 6- 21, and will be held in Pavilion 6, of the Rio Centro Arena. Many years ago, National Federations could enter any boxer they thought to be good enough to attend the games, but this has changed, and the sport is now allotted 250 athletes, 204 men and 36 women, by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The men box in 10 weight divisions and women in three. At last count the International Boxing Association (AIBA) had 195 members, so it can be seen how keen the competition is to get on to the list for the Games. It is expected that the statute will be removed, after which AIBA will make a ruling on just what will happen. There are valid arguments for and against professional boxers being allowed to participate in the Games at this time, and no doubt the debate will get more intense after June 1. To date, 201 boxers from 58 countries have qualified for the Games. The other remaining places will be decided in three more tournaments. The final tournament for females, the Women’s World Championships, was held in Astania took place in Astana, Kazakhstan. Jamaica had an entrant, flyweight Sara-Joy Rae, who lives in Switzerland. She, however, lost in the first round to Yana Burym of Belarus. The men have two more tournaments, one AOB and the other APB. The AOB tournament will take place in Baku, Azerbaijan from June 16-26. The dates and venue for the APB tournament, which is for the professional boxers, is to be announced. This will quite likely happen shortly after the June 1 vote.
DUBAI, UAE (CMC):Fast bowler Kesrick Williams from St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) has been called up as a replacement for Andre Russell in the West Indies team for the T20 International Series against Pakistan starting here next week.The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) announced yesterday that Russell, one of the game’s leading all-rounders and member of the West Indies World T20 championship-winning team, has asked to withdraw from the series to attend to a personal matter.Williams, 26, who is yet to play at the international level, was recently named on the West Indies A Team to tour Sri Lanka for the 50-over matches from October 24 to 30.INTERNATIONAL EXPERIENCEHe has represented Windward Island Volcanoes and Combined Campuses & Colleges in the WICB Professional Cricket League and the Jamaica Tallawahs in the Caribbean Premier League.During the fourth edition of the CPL earlier this year, Williams emerged as one of the leading bowlers with 17 wickets to help the Tallawahs win the title for the second time.West Indies, the World T20 champions, will face Pakistan in three matches in the United Arab Emirates from September 23 to 27.T20 SQUAD: Carlos Brathwaite (captain), Samuel Badree, Dwayne Bravo, Johnson Charles, Andre Fletcher, Jason Holder, Evin Lewis, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Nicholas Pooran, Rovman Powell, Marlon Samuels, Jerome Taylor, Chadwick Walton, Kesrick Williams.
GOOD TIME MONEY MAGNET, who has now won twice from three starts, was ridden by the apprentice Odean Edwards for trainer Richard Azan and covered the distance (made most) in the good time of 1:06.2 for owners Nya. She is a chestnut filly by Nuclear Wayne out of Jazzy Jet. Also yesterday, the Gordon Lewis-trained MR. BONES (Ameth Robles up) ran on strongly to catch long-time leader SUNDANCE (8-5) and win by 1 1/4 lengths in the Knutsford Park Cup over 1200 metres, completing a weekend double for trainer Lewis and owner Tony Hart, who won with 16-1 outsider MONTEGONIAN over 1800 metres on Saturday. The progressive three-year-old gelding, CHACE THE GREAT, easily won the overnight allowance race at 1300 metres in a fast 1.18.2, to complete a hat-trick of wins. A 4-5 favourite, the Dwight Chen-trained CHACE THE GREAT was a chance ride for champion jockey Shane Ellis, replacing the injured Wesley Henry. The back-to-back race meets at Caymanas Park over the weekend, which ended yesterday, were highlighted by two impressive performances by the two-year-old fillies SHE’S A MANEATER and MONEY MAGNET in round two of the Front Runner Sprint and Keeling Memorial Cup, respectively, both over 1100 metres. On Saturday, 15-time champion trainer Wayne DaCosta introduced yet another classy two-year-old in the million-dollar Front Runner Sprint, and the bay filly by Natural Selection out of the 2009 ‘Horse of the Year’, Ahwhofah, assumed an early lead under four-time champion Omar Walker and proceeded to win by all of 13 1/2 lengths from CHRISANLI, covering the distance in the smart time of 1:05.3, although eased by Walker in the last 100 metres. A half-sister to last year’s 2000 Guineas winner, ALI BABA, SHE’S A MANEATER is owned and bred by Winston Kong, who was not present at the track to witness the awesome display by his filly, who DaCosta feels has a bright future. “This one is for real,” declared the Hall of Fame trainer. “She had been working brilliantly and did what was expected of her. “She will run in the Supreme Ventures Triple Crown series starting next month along with ARMAGEDDON, who also impressed in his two-year-old debut recently,” added DaCosta. On Yesterday’s nine-race programme, MONEY MAGNET (4-1) rebounded from her recent loss to VERY CLASSIC to win the Keeling Memorial Cup by 8 1/2 lengths from 3-5 favourite MR. UNIVERSE and old rival VERY CLASSIC at 4-5 in a six-horse field.
BURNLEY 0, ARSENAL 1 The two minutes of injury time had almost elapsed at Turf Moor when Alexis Sanchez received a short corner and sent over a cross that Theo Walcott flicked on. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain appeared to get a touch to the ball, which reared up off the hand of Laurent Koscielny unintentionally and squeezed over the line. The match marked 20 years since Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger officially took charge of Arsenal and a fifth straight league win lifted his team to third place two points behind City. LEICESTER 0, SOUTHAMPTON 0 MANCHESTER, England (AP): Manchester City’s winning start to the English Premier League is over – and the title favourites might just have seen close up their biggest rivals for the trophy. Producing a clinic in high-octane pressing, Tottenham hounded City into submission in a 2-0 victory at White Hart Lane that consigned Pep Guardiola to his first loss in 12 games. Six of those matches had come in the Premier League and had been won at a canter. It was the kind of all-round performance that Spurs produced for large spells of last season under Mauricio Pochettino before collapsing late on in their pursuit of eventual champions Leicester. That was the first time Spurs contended for the league title in a generation and they are proving it wasn’t just a one-off. After seven games, second-placed Tottenham are the only unbeaten team in the Premier League, still haven’t conceded a goal in open play, and are now just one point behind City. In a dominant first-half display, Tottenham went ahead through Aleksandar Kolarov’s own goal in the ninth minute, before Dele Alli added a second as City’s defence was overwhelmed by the home team’s energy and movement. It could have been worse for City: Erik Lamela had a second-half penalty saved for Spurs in the second half. City’s much-lauded attack failed to score for the first time this season and their defence looked suspect, like it did in the 3-3 draw at Celtic in the Champions League on Wednesday. There are finally some cracks in City’s teams for their title rivals to cling to. Manchester United couldn’t take advantage, only drawing 1-1 at home to struggling Stoke, but Arsenal scraped a 1-0 win at Burnley, thanks to a scrambled goal with virtually the last touch of the game. It might all be about the Champions League for Leicester this season. This draw means Leicester have won just two of the opening seven games of their Premier League title defence. In their first-ever Champions League campaign, the Foxes have won both of their games the latest coming against two-time European champions Porto on Tuesday. Southampton created the better chances at King Power stadium, with in-form striker Charlie Austin hitting the post early on and wasting a one-on-one chance in the second half. MANCHESTER UNITED 1, STOKE 1 After opening with three straight victories, United have won only one of their last four games in the league and are already playing catchup. Joe Allen earned a point for Stoke, scoring an 82nd-minute equaliser following a rare mistake by David de Gea. The United goalkeeper fumbled a long-range shot. Jon Walters scooped the loose ball against the bar before it bounced down for Allen to smash home from close range. United took the lead in the 69th through Anthony Martial’s curling strike, two minutes after he came on as a substitute. United are sixth with 13 points, five behind City at the top. Stoke are still waiting for a first win of the season, but have ended their 13-game losing streak at Old Trafford, stretching back 36 years.
UNIQUE CONCEPT KINGSTON: Telecom giants Huawei has joined forces with TrainFit and Tru-Juice for the inaugural staging of the Moon Light 5K Walk & River-Bonfire Party, which takes place at the Tru- Juice Orchards, Bog Walk, on Friday. The walk will give patrons an opportunity to connect with nature and step away from the norm while enjoying their fellow comrades on the trail. The 5K is scheduled to start at 9 p.m. and promises a unique and different experience. “We decided to come onboard the Moon Light 5K Walk & River-Bonfire Party because the concept of the event is unique and different from the normal 5K, it’s a trail of non-stop fun, great vibes and excitement,” explained Chrysta Walker, marketing and public relations manager, Huawei, Jamaica. She added: “There will be four stops on the trail and those will be party stops at every mile with different genres of music, including soca, salsa, EDM and dancehall, building the party vibe along the trail. “The walk will culminate at a river, where patrons can relax and enjoy the bonfire, while being entertained by performances, as Huawei Jamaica continues to aggressively take the market by venturing into every aspect of Jamaican life. “The ultimate party experience will be provided by music being played from one of our flagship models, the Huawei P9, at all the party stops. The phones will be put to the test as this will be the first time a phone will substitute for a live disc jock,” Walker pointed out. Huawei P9 ambassadors, football star Lionel Messi, Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson and Henry Cavill have been raving about the features of the Huawei P9 and now, participants will get first-hand experience with the devices to see what all the rave is about as the Huawei P9 will soon be available in Jamaica.