ST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC):West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) President Dave Cameron has hailed Stafanie Taylor’s capture of the ICC Women’s Twenty20 International Cricketer of the Year award and says the honour will further boost women’s cricket in the region.The 24-year-old Taylor was on Wednesday honoured with the award for the year 2015 by cricket’s world governing body after dominating the international circuit with 340 runs from nine matches, including three half-centuries, during the period under review.”Stafanie has demonstrated that she is not just an excellent batter and bowler, but also a very good leader,” Cameron said.FANTASTIC JOB”She did a fantastic job when she took over the captaincy against Pakistan earlier this year and was immediately rewarded with a series victory.”This award will help raise the profile of women’s cricket in the West Indies, as it is further proof that young women in the Caribbean can rise to the top of the world in their chosen endeavour,” he added.The right-handed Taylor has been a prolific scorer for West Indies ever since making her debut as a 16-year-old in 2008. Such form landed her the ICC One-Day International (ODI) Player of the Year awards in 2011 and 2012.Last September, she was elevated to the post of captain and inspired her side to a 3-0 victory over touring Pakistan women in the T20 series and a 3-1 win in the ODI series.She plundered 261 runs at an average of 130 in the ODIs to earn the Player of the Series award.Cameron said Taylor had been an “outstanding representative and ambassador” throughout her career.”On behalf of the WICB and the various stakeholders in West Indies cricket, I want to extend congratulations to Stafanie on winning this major award on the ICC cricketing calendar,” Cameron noted.”She has been an outstanding representative and ambassador for West Indies from the first time she set foot on the international stage back in 2008, and she keeps getting better.”
Subsequent tests showed that Narine’s action was exceeding the 15-degree level of tolerance permitted under ICC regulations. He has since undergone rehabilitation on his action and is scheduled to be tested at the Loughborough University in England next month. “On the weekend, he looked good and is bowling quite well,” said manager of Queen’s Park Cricket Club, Guillen, after Narine captured two for 37 in a 10-over spell to help his club Queen’s Park beat Clarke Road by 32 runs in the opening round of the 50-overs championship. “The issue I think would not be passing the test, but getting ready for the World T20, which is major. We are confident that he would be ready, but at the moment his ambition is to get past the test, which he should take in about two or three weeks’ time.” Narine has been included in a West Indies 15-man squad for the Twenty20 World Cup pending the outcome of the Loughborough test. The West Indies start their campaign on March 16, when they face England in Mumbai. PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC): Officials monitoring the remodelled action of West Indies off-spinner Sunil Narine say he is now bowling within limits stipulated by ICC regulations. Local match referee Michael Ragoonath and cricket administrator Jeffrey Guillen both said they saw nothing to be concerned about while watching Narine’s new action in local matches over the weekend. Ragoonath, who was referee for two matches involving Narine, said he received no negative reports from any of the umpires who officiated. “I stood as match referee for both games and the only way I can act is if a bowler is reported by the onfield umpires,” Ragoonath told the Guardian. “Sunil played in both games and the umpires did not report anything to me. What I did was to video tape his bowling to have a look at it and when we sat down and viewed the footage, we found him to be well within the limits allowed for bending of the arm.” Narine had not bowled competitively since being forced out of the Bangladesh Premier League last November and was reported during West Indies’ series against Sri Lanka. REHABILITATION ON HIS ACTION
ARSENAL (4-2-3-1)OSPINA,BELLERIN, KOSCIELNY, GABRIEL, MONREAL,ELNENEY, COQUELIN,IWOBI, OZIL, SANCHEZ,WELBECKDEENEY, IGHALO,BEHRAMI, CAPOUE, SUAREZ, JURADO,AKE, BRITOS, CATHCART, NYOM,GOMESWATFORD (4-4-2)Since beating Barclays League leaders Leicester City in mid-February, Arsenal have won just once in the league in four games, the 2-0 victory at Everton last time out.That poor run leaves the Gunners 11 points behind Leicester and six behind Tottenham Hotspur, who are second.Watford have kept only two clean sheets in their last 13 Premier League games but on March 13 they won 2-1 at the Emirates in the FA Cup quarter-finals to set up a Wembley semi-final against Crystal Palace.That was Watford’s first win at Arsenal since 1988, when they won 1-0 at Highbury in the old First Division.Since then, Arsenal have won five out of five in the league against the Hornets, most recently the 3-0 victory at Vicarage Road in October, with goals from Alexis Sanchez, Olivier Giroud and Aaron Ramsey.Watford arrive on the back of three straight defeats, a run which has seen them drop to 14th in the Premier League and just 11 points clear of the relegation zone. One more victory should assure Watford of their Premier League place but they have won only five times away from home in the league, most recently at Crystal Palace in February.Arsenal are still without Santi Cazorla, Ramsey, Tomas Rosicky and Jack Wilshere. There is a chance that goalkeeper Petr Cech can return after a five-match absence caused by a calf injury. Mathieu Flamini is another to have to go undergo a test.Watford, meanwhile, are still missing Joel Ekstrand, Rene Gilmartin and Tommy Hoban.
STREAKY BOWLER Asked to lead England’s attack in the absence of Jimmy Anderson, the 6-foot-5 Broad grabbed the new ball under gray skies and with a hint of rain in the air. In those conditions, and when his tail is up, you wouldn’t want another bowler at your disposal. Broad has been described as a streaky bowler – going through as many barren patches as hot spells – and it was reckoned he’d never top the burst of 6-20 in 45 balls that led England to an Ashes-clinching win in Durham in 2013. But from the moment he enticed an edge from Chris Rogers on the third ball of the day, there was no stopping him. Australia just couldn’t handle Broad’s length and movement off the seam. It was fitting that 54 balls later, Broad was the player to finish off the tourists with the wicket of Nathan Lyon. “I’ve always been one of these bowlers who gets on a rhythm and picks up wickets in a short space of time,” Broad said. “But I never dreamt I’d be able to get eight wickets in a spell. “It’s a bit of a freak day, but it’s what you work hard for, those moments when it all works for you. It’s great to have a personal best against Australia.” NOTTINGHAM, England (AP): In his pre-match rally, England captain Alastair Cook called on a teammate to make the telling intervention in the fourth Ashes Test so their “name will be etched in history forever”. That man proved to be Stuart Broad. It couldn’t get any better for Broad yesterday. Career-best numbers of 8-15 in just 9.3 overs. The best figures by a pace bowler in the 133-year history of the Ashes. Only the fifth player to take 300 wickets for England. Moving your team to the cusp of a series win against all the odds. And all that on your home ground. “The perfect day” was Broad’s assessment after helping to dismiss Australia for just 60 in 18.3 overs on an extraordinary first day at Trent Bridge. England finished the day on 274-4, with a lead of 214 runs and one hand on the little urn. The last time Broad delivered such a devastating spell of bowling, he was playing for his school at under-15 level and returned figures of 7-12. It hardly compares to the stage on which he found himself yesterday.
MIAMI, United States (CMC):Trinidad and Tobago held United States to a nil-draw in Port-of-Spain, while at the Arnos Vale Sports Complex in Kingstown, St Vincent and the Grenadines suffered their second straight drubbing with a 4-0 defeat to Guatemala in CONCACAF semi-final round 2018 World Cup Qualifying matches on Tuesday.Meanwhile, in Panama City, Costa Rica beat Panama 2-1 at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez.Jamaica beat Haiti 1-0 on Clayton Donaldson’s 62nd-minute goal, the victory moving them off the bottom of Group B into third spot behind leaders Costa Rica, who have six points from two wins in as many outings.In Group C, T&T lie second on four points behind the USA, who also have four points but lead the group by virtue of a superior goal difference. SVG remain rock bottom after two losses.SVG, who were hammered 6-1 by the US in their opener, suffered a similar fate when Cincotta scored in the 23rd minute and Mynor Lopez nine minutes later to give Guatemala a 2-0 half-time lead.Three minutes after the break, Denniss Lopez added a third with Gerson Tinoco scoring nine minutes from the end to wrap up the comprehensive win.
MADRID (AP):Barcelona sent a strong message to AtlÈtico Madrid and Real Madrid yesterday, demolishing Deportivo La CoruÒa 8-0 to end a four-game winless streak and keep their lead in the Spanish League.Luis Su·rez scored four goals and set up three others to help Barcelona stop their free fall and show their determination to win the league for a second year in a row despite recent struggles.Lionel Messi, Neymar, Mark Bartra, and Ivan Rakitic also scored for the Catalan club at the Riazor Stadium in La CoruÒa.The much-needed win gave Barcelona 79 points to keep them ahead of AtlÈtico Madrid, who defeated Athletic Bilbao 1-0 with a 38th-minute goal by striker Fernando Torres for their eighth win in nine league games. AtlÈtico also reached 79 points, but they trail Barcelona on tiebreakers.Real Madrid stayed one point behind Barcelona and AtlÈtico with four rounds to go after a 3-0 win over Villarreal. Karim Benzema opened the scoring at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium in the 41st; Lucas Vazquez added a second in the 69th; and Luka Modric rounded off in the 76th.”The team was phenomenal from the first minute until the last,” said Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane, whose team has won eight league games in a row.Cristiano Ronaldo left the match just before the final whistle with an apparent right-leg muscle injury. The club said he would undergo tests as a precaution today, but it did not appear to be a serious problem.
Sponsorship is a major challenge for the development of football in the parish of St Catherine. Despite that, the parish is doing well. That’s the word from Peter Reid, president of the St Catherine Football Association.Reid says football is on the rise in the nation’s biggest parish despite the financial challenge.”The lack of sponsorship does not take away from what we are doing because we have played our under-13, under-15, under-17 and under-20 (competitions) without sponsorship,” he revealed, “and we have FLOW on board for our Major League and our Happy Sutherland (KO).”That latter competition, named for long serving St Catherine football administrator, Lincoln ‘Happy Sutherland’, is the parish’s premier knockout tournament.Despite the strictures, Reid believes the outlook for St Catherine is positive. He pointed out that eight members of the under-15 national girls team came through St Catherine’s football programmes and that St Catherine are national champions in that age group for both boys and girls.”So with a small amount of sponsorship, we are doing well,” he accounted. “But we could do with much more sponsorship.”
KINGSTON:Damion Johnson racked up a straight-sets win, while Ricardo Chambers stormed back from a one-set deficit to win the men’s Open and Amateur titles, respectively, at the Liguanea Club Open Tennis Tournament, which wrapped up on Friday night.With youth and vigour in his favour, Chambers matched skills with proven campaigner Richard Lee, and the wily veteran had a few tricks up his sleeve. Lee outplayed Chambers to win the first set, but the talented newcomer kept his head and rebounded to take the next two sets and claim the Amateur title with a 6-7, 6-2, 6-3 win.”It was one of those matches where I knew what I needed to do, so it was just about executing,” said Chambers. “When I went down 2-0 in the second set, I started hitting the ball deeper, putting more spin on it, and that started getting me some points, and then I was just able to run away with it.”In the Open competition, Johnson had things all his way. The reigning national champion shook off a gruelling semi-final – where he was made to work for every point – to post an easy win to take the title.WINNING STREAKIn his fourth matchup against national number two, Dwayne Pagon, in recent months, Johnson beat his rival 6-2, 6-2 to extend his winning streak against Pagon to four out of four.”In the semi-finals, I played horrible tennis. I was very tired and it came out on the court. For the final, I was well rested and I came out to win, so I went for all my shots, I served at 90 per cent and my forearm was at a 90 per cent average, so overall, I played pretty well,” Johnson observed.Tournament Director Llockett McGregor said he was satisfied with the standard of play throughout the week-long event.He said: “We had the best players competing and they played a high standard of tennis throughout the competition, so overall, we are very pleased with how the tournament turned out.”McGregor also expressed gratitude to the tournament’s sponsors for their support.”We have to thank our major sponsors Total and UHY Dawgen and all the other companies who supported us because it is very important to have events of this calibre in order to build up local tennis,” he added.Other sponsors were Avis, Lifespan, KLAS ESPN Sports FM, Epic Technologies, Jamaica Biscuit Company, and Cari-med.
Veteran coach of Boys’ Town FC Andrew Price has urged corporate Jamaica to assist with a ‘Summer League’ to help keep top players in Jamaica during the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) off-season. Price said that when players travel to the United States of America to participate in summer games there, it is not helping local football. “We, like other local clubs, have players who go overseas during preseason. We have to look at how best we can keep the players here for preseason. It is something that the PLCA (Premier League Clubs Association) can look into,” the former PLCA general manager said during the RSPL’s weekly press conference at Red Stripe yesterday. “The players go away to earn, so local clubs have to find ways to give them a stipend so that they can remain here and participate in preseason training,” he added. “It is something that needs a lot of discussion. The clubs can’t afford to keep the players here, so they go to the US just to play for additional income. This is something that has been going on for years, but when players come back they are not in a condition to play immediately. They have to start preseason late, and this affects most clubs,” Price explained “We have to engage them in a summer league. However, this means the private sector has to get involved. It is a difficult situation, but we have to find a solution,” he said. Boys’ Town are yet to score a point after four games, and Price says that his senior players came back three weeks ago and are in training. “They have been training for the past three weeks and are blending with the young players for a good combination. We need senior players to stay here, but we can’t force them as they have to look out for their families. We are asking for corporate support,” Price added. Pat Garel, who took over from Price as PLCA general manager, is in full support of this suggestion. “We have to sit down and find ways to solve the problem as it is affecting the league,” Garel pointed out. Four of the senior Boys’ Town players who went to the United States for the summer are Daemion Benjamin, Asrick Samuels, Garfield Gillespie and Wayne Ellis.
THE Mavis Bank High pair of Garfield Gordon and Shantay Chamberlain seemed to have relished the new route as both were victorious at yesterday’s CB Group-UWI 5K Run on the campus of the University of West Indies, Mona, after taking the male and female titles.Gordon captured the male event in 16 minutes 18 seconds, while 14 year-old Chamberlain surprised her teammate Crystal Brown – the defending champion to win the female event in 21 minutes 05 seconds.Unlike previous years where the race started and ended at the UWI Mona Bowl, there was an adjustment to yesterday’s route as the race started and ended on Queen’s Drive – the main entrance to the university.Gordon ensured that he made up for his performances at the Mico 5K and the Portmore Burger King 10K, where he finished second and third-respectively, turning the table on the in-form Oshane Archibald of G.C. Foster College, who was relegated to second spot in 16:30, with his teammate Daniel Glave coming in third in 16: 35.”I am really happy for my first win of the season. I have been training very hard over the past week and I was determined to finish in front today despite being beaten by Archibald in my past two races,” said Gordon.Following some close finishes over the past two seasons, Chamberlain, a silver medallist at last year’s ISSA-GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Championships in the 1500m in Class III, ran a well-controlled race to beat Brown to the line in 21 minutes 05 seconds. Brown was timed at 21:19 for second, while Utech-MVP’s Alithia Brown was third in 22:07.”I am feeling great and it is an awesome feeling. I am very surprised that I came out on top today. I must say a big thank you to my coach because he gave me very good instructions and I really followed his instruction well. I am hoping this preparation will help me for Champs next year, where I am hoping to win both the 800m and 1500m,” said Chamberlain.Veteran Karlene Blagrove, competing for CVM TV, switched to the 5K Walk and was successful as she was the first female to cross the line in a time of 33 minutes 08 seconds, ahead of Paula Sinclair of Ageless Wonders, 35:22, with Latoya Walker, representing CB Group, coming in third in 37:51.SUCCESSFUL EVENTFor the males, it was Lenworth Walker who was first in 30 minutes 39 seconds. Jahveney Edwards of Sun City Radio was second in 31:24, with third going to Jason Whynn in 33:08.Race Director and Manager of Running Events Alfred ‘Franno’ Francis spoke about the entire staging of another successful event, while explaining the reason behind the new route.”The route change was done because we are outgrowing the Bowl and the road that we start on, which leads on to the August Town Road and also the ambiance of being in the heart of the university is so much better for people to get a feel of the brand of the university, and we have gotten overwhelming support,” said Francis, who had high praises for the various sponsors, as they have raised over $50M over the past four years and stated that the target of $15M this year should be realised. – R.G.