Track and field’s golden boy, Usain Bolt, says he felt ‘let down’ by the sport’s leaders following recent doping and bribery controversies but thinks that suggestions to reset the world records – including the three that he currently holds are pointless. Bolt, who was on Friday evening named the 2015 RJR Sports Foundation National Sportsman of the Year, admitted shock at the crisis currently engulfing the sport with former IAAF president Lamine Diack currently facing criminal investigations around allegations he accepted bribes to sweep positive drugs tests under the carpet. The issues affecting the sport have also seen Russia being banned from competition after being accusations of a state-backed, systematic doping system. This led to UK Athletics last week releasing a document ‘A Manifesto for clean athletics’ detailing several proposals, it believes will protect clean athletes and recover the sport’s credibility, including a controversial suggestion to wipe the record books clean. The Jamaican sprinter, whose world records in the 100m (9.58), 200m (19.19) and as a member of the Jamaican 4x100m that ran 36.84 at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, would be wiped if UK Athletics has its way, admitted shock at the crisis. “When I heard the news it was quite shocking because as far as I was concerned, they were doing a good job to clean up the sport and to hear something like that was quite shocking,” Bolt said of the troubles plaguing his sport. “You feel let down as an athlete, from wanting to help clean up the sport and then for something like this to happen coming from the body of the sport,” Bolt noted. The six-time Olympic and 11-time World Championships gold medal winner, however, thinks that the suggestions to erase the world records is pointless and thinks the focus should be on ensuring that the sport’s future is a positive one. “I found it really funny, as my coach would say, you can’t change history so what they are saying (suggestions to erase records) is really pointless. What’s done is done we have to just move forward and try to make the next Olympics and World Championships and records as best as we can and look to the future. We can’t worry about the past,” Bolt added.
NORTH SOUND, Antigua (CMC):Jamaica Scorpions, set 366 for victory by Leeward Islands Hurricanes, were 58 for two at the close of the third day of their sixth-round, Regional First Class championship game at the Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium yesterday.Scores: HURRICANES 155 (Daron Cruickshank 51, Montcin Hodge 41; Damion Jacobs 5-50, Nikita Miller 4-63) and 368 for eight declared. (Jahmar Hamilton 130 not out, Montcin Hodge 72, Orlando Peters 41, Daron Cruickshank 20; Nikita Miller 4-107, Damion Jacobs 3-100).SCORPIONS 158 (Sheldon Cottrell 37, AndrÈ McCarthy 27, Jermaine Blackwood 26; Rahkeem Cornwall 5-74) & 58 for two.AT THE NATIONAL STADIUM IN GUYANA: Trinidad and Tobago Red Force, replying to Guyana Jaguars’ 237, were 136 for three in their first innings at the close of the second day yesterday.Scores: JAGUARS 237 (Vishaul Singh 104 not out, Veerasammy Permaul 47, Leon Johnson 23; Marlon Richards 3-41, Rayad Emrit 3-44, Jon-Russ Jagessar 3-59)RED FORCE 136 for three (Yannic Cariah 58 not out, Evin Lewis 26).AT KENSINGSTON OVAL: Barbados Pride, replying to Windward Islands Volcanoes’ 250 all out, were 272 for two in their first innings at the close on the second day.Scores: VOLCANOES 250 (AndrÈ Fletcher 84, Kavem Hodge 53, Shane Shillingford 28; Miguel Cummings 5-47, Sulieman Benn 3-65).PRIDE 272 for two (Kraigg Brathwaite 117, Shai Hope 98 not out, Kyle Corbin 38).
Pumped up WI target upset in World T20 semis against IndiaPumped up WI target upset in World T20 semis against India
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.”
Points standingP W D L GF GA GD Pts1. Leicester City 35 22 10 3 63 33 30 762. Tottenham 34 19 11 4 64 25 39 683. Man City 35 19 7 9 66 34 32 644. Arsenal 35 18 10 7 58 34 24 645. Man United 34 17 8 9 42 30 12 596. West Ham 34 14 14 6 57 43 14 567. Liverpool 34 15 10 9 58 45 13 558. Southampton 35 15 9 11 49 37 12 549. Chelsea 34 12 11 11 53 46 7 4710. Stoke City 35 13 8 14 37 51 -14 4711. Everton 34 9 14 11 53 48 5 4112. Watford 34 11 8 15 33 40 -7 4113. Bournemouth 35 11 8 16 42 61 -19 4114. West Brom 34 10 10 14 31 42 -11 4015.Swansea City 35 10 10 15 34 49 -15 4016. Crystal Palace 35 10 9 16 36 45 -9 3917. Sunderland 34 7 10 17 39 57 -18 3118. Norwich City 34 8 7 19 35 60 -25 3119. Newcastle 35 7 9 19 38 64 -26 3020. Aston Villa 35 3 7 25 25 69 -44 16
TRACK AND FIELD GLORY DAYS Taking the parlous state of Test cricket into active consideration, one fears a trickle over into the sport that is now bringing such joy to our people. It is also advertising the nation and its attributes to the world, who is watching on television, when the little rock called Jamaica blows away the most powerful nations on the global stage. The Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce breakout in 2008 in Beijing and their prolonged maintenance of tenure at the top rung have taken effect. All actors have been alerted to the reality that there is money in the sport and in copious quantities. There is a host of cloak and dagger games being played out with the ‘innocent’ athletes as the carrot. Allegations state that they are being forced into contracts with them as the silent partner. Uncaring coaches, the big cash returns superseding sound judgement, are left unmolested to exploit the talents of their charges. Shoe companies, too, play their role. The sickening effect mushrooms as parents and guardians are in need of the newly injected funds to keep household pots on the fire. What is missing is the knowledge required to be able to properly monitor the coaches, who them as their meal ticket to prosperity. Someone or organisation has to either ‘bell the cat’ or ‘sound the trumpet’ on these questionable activities threatening to destroy the Beijing 2008 template. The case rests, as the show of hands is awaited. – Send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org. The sport of track and field continues to enjoy days of glory. Jamaican sprinters are the envy of the world. The quarter-milers are ganging up for a return to the days of the Helsinki 1952 Olympics foursome. The Racers and MVP track clubs are churning out quality athletes, some to the benefit of adopted countries to whom they have redirected their allegiance. Through the dreams of a few coaches, dedicated to sharing the spotlight – and Julian Leonard Robinson and Michael Vassell must be mentioned – world-class throwers are emerging. Jamaica, with sports aficio-nados gaping in disbelief, qualified three discus men to be at the Beijing World Champs last year. Having two of our male sprint hurdlers making the final at that elite event was both startling and spoke to good days ahead in the discipline for that gender. The women had accomplished that time and again. None other than five-timer at the Olympics, Juliet Cuthbert-Flynn, with the added benefit of a political platform, said recently on social media that more medals than the 12 mined at London 2012 could be expected this summer in Rio. All that said, where is Foster’s Fairplay taking its highly respected readers this week? The image of West Indies cricket, built on the real version, is taking a severe beating. One has to be prepared for a verbal broadside from friend and fellow analyst, Oral Tracey, for the usage of the word ‘real’. He is known and respected in the arena of comedy. However, he sees nothing comic in his often-stated view that Test cricket, as a spectacle, is like a three-dollar bill – non-existent. However, that scenario is not of immediate concern to this column. Followers of sports Jamaica-style still hold fond memories of the world dominance of West Indies cricket. To avoid confusion with the versions in which regional teams claimed three titles recently, the reference is to the Test format. With the land of Bob Marley and the Reggae Boyz having a significant player input, the breathtaking brilliance touched three decades. With minimal threats to the ascendancy established under skipper Clive Lloyd to be continued with Viv Richards at the helm, there were series whippings administered one after the other. Scheduled five-day matches, being completed in three days, became a feature. The most fearsome foes, England and Australia, were flattened at home and abroad. The former suffered on two occasions what was first called a whitewash – five Test match batterings to nil. In short order, to highlight the ethnicity of the victors, the term ‘blackwash’ was coined. All this came to a sad end in 1995, when the Aussies injected their earlier conquerors with a losing serum. The effect is long and lasting. Debate as to what went wrong continues to rage. MONEY IN SPORTS
MELBOURNE, Australia (CMC):West Indies Twenty20 star Dwayne Bravo could be facing a spell on the sidelines after sustaining a hamstring injury during his Melbourne Renegades’ dramatic four-wicket defeat to Perth Scorchers in the Big Bash League here yesterday.Attempting to stop an off-side stroke by Michael Klinger from going to the boundary, the 33-year-old all-rounder put in a trademark dive to pull off the save but also injured himself in the process.He laid grimacing in pain and clutching his left hamstring.Bravo was subsequently treated and stretchered from the field and is expected to undergo scans today to determine the extent of the injury.His injury comes just a few days after West Indies Women’s star Deandra Dottin suffered multiple cheek fractures following an on-field collision with Brisbane Heat teammate Laura Harris during a Women’s Big Bash League game at Allan Border Field.23 FROM 18 BALLSEarlier, the right-handed Bravo struck 23 from 18 balls to help Renegades up to 148 for eight off their 20 overs after they were sent in.Cameron White top-scored with 37 off 29 deliveries while Callum Ferguson stroked 28 from 21 balls.In reply, opener Klinger slammed 72 off 55 balls, and Mitchell Marsh, batting at number four, got 34 from 22 balls as Scorchers got home off the last ball.The visitors needed nine runs off the last over and three off the last ball, and Ashton Agar carted Aaron Finch over mid-wicket for six to seal victory.West Indies off-spinner Sunil Narine was excellent in taking two for 20 from his four overs, but medium pacer Bravo was limited to a single over, which cost 14 runs.
MOVING FREE DAY With Usain Bolt retiring from the 200 metres one year early, some fans are keen to see super South African Wayde van Niekerk run the curved sprint. One fan, on the well known Caribbean Track and Field Forum website, reckons the Olympic 400-metre champion has world-record potential in the event Bolt has ruled since his sensational 19.30-second run in Beijing at the 2008 Olympic Games. It’s hard to rule that out completely, since the 24-year-old has run 9.98 seconds at high altitude for 100 metres, 19.94 seconds for 200 metres, 31.04 seconds for 300 metres, and a world-record 43.03 seconds for 400 metres from lane eight. His speed is undeniable, but it’s unlikely that he will run both the 200 metres and 400 metres at the upcoming World Championships in London this August. The schedule is a little too tough. The 400 metre starts first, at 10:45 a.m. local time on August 5, with the semi-final at 7:40 p.m. on the following day. Then things get tricky. On the 8th, after a day’s rest, van Niekerk would do the 200-metre heats at 7:30 p.m. and the 400-metre final at 9:50 p.m. That interval shrinks if van Niekerk or any doubler is in the last 200-metre heat. A look at the schedule of the last World Championships reveals seven 200-metre heats with the last one starting 42 minutes after the first. The 200-metre semi-finals and final are scheduled for 8:55 p.m. on the 9th and 9:50 p.m. on the 10th, respectively. He could petition the IAAF to open the 200/400 schedule out, the way it did for Michael Johnson two decades ago. The American, whose 400-metre record van Niekerk broke at the Olympics last year, was the king of the sport then. Accordingly, the authorities created a schedule that allowed him a day off between the 400 metres, which then – as now – started first, and the 200 metres. Track’s MJ duly did the double first at the 1995 World Championships in Goteborg, Sweden, and then at the Olympic Games in Atlanta. To crown everything, he ran 19.32 seconds in the 200 metre to set a world record that lasted until Bolt snipped two-hundredths of a seconds off it in Beijing. The tall man, of course, blasted that further to 19.19 seconds in 2009. Johnson wasn’t the only doubler to benefit from the relaxed 1996 schedule. France’s Marie-Jose Perec also produced a banner performance by first setting an Olympic record of 48.25 seconds in the 400 metres to take one gold medal and then by edging past Jamaica’s Merlene Ottey in the 200-metre final to take another. Ostensibly, a van Niekerk London double might be doable if the free day was moved from between the 400-metre semis and final to a date that separates the 400 metres and 200 metres completely. There is one other solution for those who really want van Niekerk to satisfy their need for speed. He could, as Jamaica’s 1983 World Champion Bert Cameron has suggested he might, abandon the 400 metres. After all, he was World champion in 2015 and, in one fast swoop, won Olympic gold and broke Johnson’s world record last year. If those achievements fulfill his 400-metre dreams, then a visit to the 200 metres might be on. Will he double with the schedule as it is? Will he petition to have the 400/200 overlap eliminated? Or will he leave the 400 metres for a new love – the 200 metres? And if he takes the last option, could he conceivably approach Bolt’s mind-bending world record? It sounds like a soap opera and I, for one, don’t want to miss an episode. – Hubert Lawrence has made notes at track side since 1980.
“I am definitely looking forward to getting back into the national team because I have been out of the squad for some time due to school issues,” said Harwood, who is in her final year of her Bachelor of Science degree in general management studies. “My performance in the Elite League has been good because I am really happy with myself, even though I haven’t been doing any intense training,” she said. “My shots are still there, but what I need to work on is speed and movements, but I know that I will improve on that once I get back into the national team,” Harwood said. In fact, Harwood, who the MVP trophy at the 2013 FAST5 Series in New Zealand, said she has lost a few pounds because she has been working very hard to improve her fitness. “I have lost some weight, but I need to lose a lot more so that I can get back in shape, but this will take time,” she said. National shooter Thristina Harwood has set her sights on leading the Kingston Hummingbirds to this year’s Berger Elite League title, while she eyes a return to the Sunshine Girls set up. The Hummingbirds, who last won the title in 2014, is one win away from securing their second hold on the trophy, as they lead the best-of-three finals against the St Ann Orchids 1-0, with Game Two scheduled for Thursday. Harwood, the second leading scorer in this season’s competition, was in superb form in game one, as she netted 38 goals from 48 attempts. The 23-year-old Harwood said that she is confident the Hummingbirds will close out the series on Thursday. “I know that the St Ann Orchids are going to come out very strong for the second game, but come Thursday, I will be ready,” Harwood said. “I know for sure that there won’t be a game three because I am going to play my all out and so Kingston Hummingbirds will come out victorious at the end,” she said. The stoutly regarded player, who last represented Jamaica at the 2015 Fast5 Series in New Zealand, said she is itching to get back in the national set-up. LOOKING FORWARD TO RETURN
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, (CMC):Jamaica Scorpions suffered their second loss in three outings after Barbados Pride snatched a dramatic one-wicket win in a compelling low-scoring contest under lights at Kensington Oval here Monday.Erratic Scorpions could only muster a disappointing 190 all out after they opted to bat first and Pride then scraped home with two overs left, to notch their third straight win and continue on top of Group B.The visitors appeared favourites to grab the points when they reduced Pride to 143 for eight in the 38th over, with all the leading batsmen already removed.But the tail wagged with Man-of-the-Match Kemar Roach striking a gutsy 23 off 31 balls in an invaluable 42-run ninth wicket partnership with Ashley Nurse who made an unbeaten 21.Sulieman Benn, who finished unbeaten on two, joined Nurse and together they calmly levelled the scores, before the West Indies left-arm spinner pushed speedster Renard Leveridge down the ground for the winning runs, off the last ball of the 48th over.BATTING BLUSTERShane Dowrich had earlier top-scored with 40 while Roston Chase also chipped in with 23 but Pride’s usual batting bluster deserted them and they never came to grips with the tricky run chase.Once again, former West Indies fast bowler Jerome Taylor made things difficult by claiming three for 38 from his ten overs while new ball partner, rookie Renard Leveridge, was outstanding with two for 35 from his ten.Campbell supported with two for 33 from six overs.Scorpions had earlier needed Rovman Powell’s aggressive 74 to rebound from the threat of total collapse and get up to their eventual score.Slumping badly at 97 for six in the 28th over, Scorpions were boosted by Powell’s bravado, as the right-hander smashed three fours and six sixes in a stroke-filled 79-ball knock.He helped put on 77 for the seventh wicket with Damion Jacobs, whose 31 came from 47 balls and included four fours.
Creamline gets headway for bronze medal, trumps Air ForceCreamline gets headway for bronze medal, trumps Air Force
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