PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC):The Bravo brothers, Darren and Dwayne, produced career bests in regional Twenty20, to propel Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel to a convincing 27-run victory over Jamaica Tallawahs in the first semi-final of the Caribbean Premier League on Thursday.Opting to bat first at the Queen’s Park Oval, Red Steel were fired to 152 for six off their 20 overs by Darren Bravo’s unbeaten 86, with Jason Mohammed chipping in with 28.In reply, Tallawahs crashed from a position of 97 for two in the 14th over to 125 all out, losing their last eight wickets for 28 runs in the space of 37 deliveries.The architect of their demise was captain Dwayne Bravo, who grabbed five for 23 with his medium pace to wreck the innings.Wicketkeeper Chadwick Walton top-scored with 31 and talismanic opener and captain Chris Gayle got 30, but they were only two of three batsmen to pass 20, with Jermaine Blackwood chiming in with 23.Red Steel will now clash with last year’s losing finalists, Guyana Amazon Warriors, in the second semi-final today for a place in tomorrow’s final against reigning champions Barbados Tridents.The hosts owed their total to Darren Bravo’s brilliance, especially after they slumped to 18 for three in the fourth over, following fast bowler Jerome Taylor’s early burst.Left-arm Krishmar Santokie bowled Cameron Delport with the sixth delivery of the game for one and Taylor followed up, removing South African Jacques Kallis for six to a catch by Andre Russell at mid-off in the second over before having Kamran Akmal caught at mid-wicket for six, clipping a full toss to Mahela Jayawardene in the fourth over.Bravo set about the repair work, putting on 80 for the fourth wicket with Mohammed, who struck two fours and a six off 25 balls.The left-handed Bravo faced 63 balls and counted four fours and six sixes, and single-handedly carried the innings once Mohammed perished in the 15th over.In reply, Gayle gave the Jamaica innings a rousing start, blasting medium pacer Kallis for a pair of sixes in the fourth over, as he put on 38 off 27 balls with Jayawardene, who scored 16.The left-hander was looking ominous, having struck two fours and three sixes off 23 balls, when he top-edged a slog at off-spinner Johan Botha and skied a catch back to the bowler in the fifth over.Jayawardene survived a chance on nine in the next over to add 28 for the second wicket with Walton before suffering misfortune when he was given out caught at first slip by Kallis.Television replays showed that the ball struck the batsman’s arm as he attempted the reverse sweep at left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn in the ninth over.Walton and Blackwood then posted 33 for the third wicket to help Jamaica control the game. Walton faced 30 deliveries and counted three fours while Blackwood hit two sixes – both in the 11th over from Benn – in a 22-ball innings.Jamaica seemed poised to take control when Dwayne Bravo removed Blackwood to a catch at long-off in his second over and then followed up by bowling the dangerous Andre Russell for six in his next over, the 16th of the innings.Red Steel then turned the screws and Tallawahs wilted as Dwayne Bravo ran through the lower order.
The all-conquering Kingston College football teams, which won both back-to-back Manning Cup and Olivier Shield titles in 1964 and 1965 to remain unbeaten in two seasons, will be celebrated tonight at a 50th anniversary Fortis Festival hosted by the Kingston College Old Boys’ Association at Witty’s Lounge, Savannah Plaza, starting at 7 p.m.Widely regarded as the best-ever schoolboy teams by virtue of their dominance and impeccable record, the 1964 squad comprised Tony Keyes (captain), Neville Oxford, Trevor ‘Jumpy’ Harris (father of former national player Wolde Harris), Lloyd McLean, Franklyn ‘Bowla’ Morant, and Dennis Johnson, as well as Mickey ‘Mouse Brown’ Vernon, Malee Miller, Winty Davidson, Baldwin Fisher, and goalkeeper Ossie Bailey.Despite losing Keyes, Fisher, Davidson, and Bailey, the 1965 team was just as devastating with as many as 10 members elected to the All-Manning team that year. Ample replacement for Keyes and company were found in Patrick ‘Patto’ Kirkwood, Carey Coke, Leopold ‘Offside’ Jackson, Derrick Bryan, and the colourful Leslie Lucas replacing Ossie Bailey in goal. The squad also included two very good players in Joseph Alvaranga and Roy Black, now a popular selector on KLAS radio and musicologist, who will provide the music for tonight’s tribute.All were honoured at a dinner hosted by the New York Chapter of the Kingston College Old Boys in April, 1997 in New York.Significantly, in 1964, Kingston College achieved the grand slam of schoolboy sports, winning not only the Manning Cup, but Boys’ Champs and the Sunlight Cup cricket competition (now Grace Shield) as well, a feat unmatched in the annals of schoolboy sports.Franklyn Morant was a member of all three teams, while ‘Jumpy’ Harris and Mickey Vernon were key members of the winning Sunlight Cup team, and the outstanding sprinter, Tony Keyes, a member of the trail-blazing Champs’ team, which had the distinction of being the first schoolboy representatives to run and win at the Penn Relays in the USA.- Orville Clarke
Western Bureau:Despite shooting a three over par final round, Jamaica’s Jonathan Newnham nonetheless emerged as the top individual performer in the 2015 Caribbean Golf Championship Hoerman Cup, which concluded at the Half Moon Golf Course in Montego Bay yesterday.Newnham, who had one under-par round on Wednesday and Thursday, raised hopes that he would have had a brilliant final round but he was a little off colour yesterday. However, his combined score of 290 (73, 71,71 and 75) was good enough to put him ahead of the Dominican Republic’s Radhames Pena who finished two strokes behind the Jamaican.Besides Newnham, it was a disappointing day for Jamaica from an individual perspective and as a consequence, the Dominican Republic, which had a better all-round team performance, took the team title ahead of Jamaica.The next best Jamaican was Ian Facey, who shot a lame 78 yesterday, which landed him in 15th place with his scores in the previous three rounds (79, 75 and 78, giving him a combined score of 310. Owen Samuda, Sean Morris and William Knibb took the 18th, 19th and 20th slots.In addition to Pena, the Dominican Republic’s march to the team title which saw them edging Jamaica by two strokes, was also fuelled by decentfinishes by Lino Guerrero and Juan Jose Guerra, who ended sixth and tenth on the individual table.Dominican Republic had a final combined score of 1210 to Jamaica’s 1212 to clinch the team title and left the Jamaicans wondering how things could have been different had Newnham repeated his back to back 71s on Wednesday and Thursday.In the showdown for the George Teale title, which featured the women, the US Virgin Islands sparkled both individually and as team as they got the individual title through Amira Alexander and the team title with a score of 615, two strokes better than Puerto Rico.Individually, Madelyn Piccininni was the best Jamaica finisher, ending up in sixth place after shooting 78, which gave her a total score of 322. She shot 81, 85 and 78 in the previous three rounds. Jamaica finished fifth behind the US Virgin Island, Puerto Rico, Trinidad & Tobago and the Dominican Republic.
However, Burrell now insists that to be president of two demanding associations would be time-consuming and challenging. “Look at what people have been saying? So I won’t hang around until I am thrown out,” Burrell noted. “Many people now want the post, so at times you have to step back and give others who have asked for the opportunity the chance to serve,” he told The Gleaner. “I have a business which I have built for many years, and it’s time to start paying attention to that. After a while, you realise that you need time for family, business and other things,” he added. “I am not going to step back fully (from football administration), I will always be around. Right now, I am the JFF president and I am going back for another four years, as I have been nominated unopposed. “That, in itself, is a lot of commitment and to give that commitment to the regional body is going to take up more of the time. So to hold both posts is a huge task. “Right now, I am a vice-president of the organisation (CONCACAF), but to vie for the head would mean complete devotion, and with my federation, business and family, it would be very difficult,” he explained. CONCACAF’S interim committee comprises Justino Compean (Mexico), Sunil Gulati (USA), Pedro Chaluja (Panama), Luis Hernandez (Cuba), Victor Montagliani (Canada) and Sonia Bien-AimÈ (Turks & Caicos) and Burrell. The Jamaican said the focus is to rebuild the organisation’s reputation and get reforms. “We have collectively decided to remain as one strong body, to operate as a unit until next May when the election is due. This was a unanimous decision and we have been pursuing a number of reforms to make the confederation emerge stronger. “We feel it is the right thing to do and we are certain that in the months ahead, things will return to normal and the confederation will be much stronger and transparent,” he commented. “This is a voluntary position and times may come when others want an opportunity and they should be given the opportunity. But at this time, I am just concentrating on working with the group, getting the reforms in place and passed by congress, so that when we go forward, the problems that we have experienced recently, the reform process will prevent a lot of these from happening again,” he stated. Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) president, Captain Horace Burrell, revealed that given the recent corruption investigations which rocked world football and threw the regional body into chaos following the arrest two former presidents, he is not keen to be head of CONCACAF. Caymanians Jeffrey Webb and Alfredo Hawit have been arrested in football’s ongoing scandal and another former CONCACAF president, Trinidad and Tobago’s Austin ‘Jack’ Warner, has been implicated in the corruption probe, with a US extradition request sent to his Government. The JFF boss, in the past, had declared his ambitions to assume the CONCACAF top job. He was recently appointed to an interim CONCACAF body to govern the affairs of the region’s football until a new president is elected at the confederation’s next congress in Mexico City in May. Give others a chance
LONDON (AP): Matthew Hobden, an English cricketer regarded as one of the most talented up-and-coming players in the country, has died. He was 22. The England and Wales Cricket Board announced Hobden’s death yesterday. It didn’t give a cause of death. Hobden was a seam bowler who had been selected for the Potential England Performance program for each of the last two years. He played county cricket for Sussex. “As a player, I remember the first time I saw him just thinking, ‘Wow,'” said Kevin Shine, the ECB’s lead fast bowling coach. “He was the strongest, most powerful cricketer I’ve ever seen on that program — up there with elite athletes from different sports. His potential was huge, he was improving rapidly and I’m certain that he would have played for England.” England players wore black armbands in Hobden’s memory on the second day of the second test against South Africa in Cape Town on Sunday. Hobden made his first-class debut in 2014 and represented Sussex in all formats of the game. “Matthew was an exciting young cricketer with a big future ahead of him in the game,” Sussex said in a statement.
NEW VERSION OF CRICKET There is a new version of cricket, however. It is T20 cricket. It is taking over like wildfire and it has given those in charge the opportunity to spread their wings, to cover the whole wide world. For years now, there has been a call to add more teams to cricket and there has always been a counterclaim by the ‘big shots’ of cricket that the game would be too one-sided if that was done. There is no doubt that was true. Can you imagine a Test match between Australia and Canada at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and, at end of day two, at the end of the first innings, the scoreboard read: Australia 400 for one or two declared, Canada70 and 20 for five? Who would watch this match and who would pay for the exercise? Based on their performances over the years and their performance this year, however, the minnows, or some of them Ireland, the Netherlands, Oman, Afghanistan, Scotland, Hong Kong and Kenya, deserve their places. And so do others like Papua, New Guinea, Canada and the USA. If they never get to compete, no one will ever know of them, just as we would never have known of players like Mohammad Shahzar; Afghanistan’s batsman Kyle Coetzer; Scotland’s batsman Zeeshan Maqsood; Oman’s batsman Dawlat Zadran; Afghanistan’s pacer and one of the real finds of the tournament, Afghanistan’s young right-arm leg-spinner Rashid Khan. And what of countries like China, Argentina and even Brazil if they so desire? T20 cricket is made for them. RANKED NO. 3 T20 cricket is ranked number three in the general scheme of things. It is played regularly in local competitions, hardly in international competitions and up to last month, it was played every two years as a world tournament. Regrettably, it is scheduled for every four years as of the next time. T20 cricket is big business. It is, however, easy to play, it is fun, it caters to the spectators, and although the players, including the West Indies players, or most of them, prefer the Test version, it is the most popular format today. T20 cricket is ideal as a tool to spread the game. The minnows can upset the ‘big boys’ occasionally, just as how The Netherlands defeated England in both the 50-over World Cup and the World Twenty 20 and just as how Afghanistan defeated the West Indies a few weeks ago in the World Twenty20. Those defeats were embarrassing for England and that defeat was also embarrassing for the soon-to-be crowned world champions, West Indies, a few days ago. They added to the excitement of the tournament, however, and as far as The Netherlands and Afghanistan are concerned, they contributed to the growth of the game. The ICC has a duty to its minnows and a responsibility to cricket to let them loose and offer them more opportunities. This is the time to allow cricket to grow. The International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20 tournament of 2016 is behind us and despite many events of its kind – and many successful ones at that – the world of cricket can truthfully say that this one was a tremendous success. Maybe it was the different types of pitches found in India this time around and maybe it was the different kinds of bowling, especially the presence of right-arm leg-spin bowling, which made it so successful. Maybe it was the quality of batting throughout, the tournament and the brilliance of the fielding which lifted the standard and thus the excitement throughout and maybe it was the energy and performance of the minnows which caused it all. Maybe it was, in the final analysis, the performance of the big hitters of the West Indies which made the difference and the stylish and dramatic way in which they ended the tournament on a winning note, with the ball disappearing into the outskirts of Kolkata. Maybe it was simply an improving mindset by the players. Whatever it was that caused it, it was a tournament to remember and to duplicate and, at least, the next time around. For years now, and but for a few changes, cricket has remained the same. It has been basically the same teams, with nothing new to add spice and colour to the scenery. Cricket, it is said, is a hard game to learn, but that is Test cricket.
PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC): Captain Yannick Ottley says despite Trinidad and Tobago Red Force’s lacklustre start to the new Regional Four-Day season, they are still confident of beating Jamaica Scorpions in the fourth round of the tournament, which bowls off next weekend. Red Force lie one from bottom in the six-team championship on 27 points after a win, a defeat and a draw in their opening three matches. Ottley said the recent short break following the end of the third round had given his side a chance to regroup, and there was a great vibe in the camp ahead of the trip to Kingston. “We have had a couple rest days and a few practice sessions, but the guys have been doing some one-on-one work with the coaches and identifying a few areas we need to improve on, so it is good to see guys working on their skills and trying to be better at what we do,” Ottley told the Trinidad Express. “We are pretty good at the moment. The team is really gelling together. There is a lot of unity in the team. We are like a family and we just need to keep supporting each other.” Red Force made a strong start with a convincing nine-wicket victory over Windward Islands Volcanoes at Queen’s Park Oval, but then showed little enterprise as they slumped to a heavy 292-run defeat to arch-rivals Barbados Pride at the same venue in the following round. Rain then ravaged their third-round home encounter against Leeward Islands Hurricanes, allowing limited play in the game. Kyle Hope (86) and debutant Isaiah Rajah (69) both struck half-centuries in an opening stand of 162, but Red Force slumped to 287 for eight in their first innings before rain wrecked the game. POSITIVE SHIFT Ottley said that outing had signalled a positive shift from the batting woes they endured against Pride. “With that game against the Leewards, we started well with the bat, and it could have been two wins and one loss at home, and I think that would have been a pretty good start for us, but the batting has really come along well [since the Pride game] and we just have to continue to play together as a team and make sure we keep the attitude right,” he pointed out. Scorpions are one place above Red Force on 28.6 points with two-time reigning champions Guyana Jaguars leading the standings on 33.6 points.
Andre Lowe, Special Projects Editor – Sports The legal team representing embattled Jamaican sprinter Nesta Carter is currently finalising its submission to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to appeal the sprinter’s disqualification for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. However, Carter is allowed to compete pending the outcome of the CAS proceedings, this after the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) received confirmation from the IAAF outlining that the sprinter had not been issued a suspension after retroactively testing positive for the prohibited substance methylhexaneamine. JAAA president Dr Warren Blake told The Gleaner yesterday that he had received confirmation from the IAAF after writing to CEO Olivier Gers and enquiring about Carter’s eligibility to compete. Gers, who was in the island recently as a guest at the RJR Sports Foundation National Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards and who also had meetings with Blake and other track and field interests during his brief visit to the island yesterday responded to the JAAA president outlining that Carter was free to compete. “It appears Mr Carter is not provisionally suspended and is eligible to compete in athletics competition pending the CAS procedure,” Gers wrote in his response to the JAAA’s query after consultation with the IAAF’s Medical and Anti-Doping Commission. Carter is now expected to start his season shortly after going nearly 17 months since his last race. Carter will compete this Saturday at the Milo Western Relays at the Montego Bay Sports Complex as a member of MVP’s 4x100m relay team.
Coach Andrew Price is counting on his experienced players to lead the team to the knockout stage in the upcoming CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship in the Bahamas. Price who has cut the squad to 12 from 30 players is confident that they can advance from Group A. “We have played against the other teams in the past. We beat Belize 8-4 when the teams met in the group stage two years ago in this tournament. We also beat Guyana six years ago in the only meeting, and defeated Bahamas twice in three meetings,” Price told The Gleaner yesterday ahead of the team’s departure this morning. “The final 12 are players with grit and determination. We are optimistic of reaching the quarter-final as we did two years ago, and take it from there,” he added. The 2017 CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship will include a field of 16 teams. During the first four days of the championship, teams will compete in round-robin play in four groups of four teams each. Group A – Bahamas, Jamaica, Belize and Guyana. Group B – Mexico, Barbados, Canada and Guadeloupe. Group C – United States, Trinidad & Tobago, Antigua and Barbuda and US Virgin Islands. Group D – El Salvador, Costa Rica, Panama and Turks & Caicos Islands. The winners and runners-up from each group will advance to the quarter-finals. The champions and the runners-up of the competition will join hosts Bahamas as the three CONCACAF representatives at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Bahamas 2017, which kicks off in April. Jamaica will open against Belize on Monday, then play against Guyana on Tuesday,and complete their group fixtures on Wednesday against hosts Bahamas. The squad: Kirk Porter, Edsel Scott, Daemion Benjamin, Ryon Powell, Gerald Neil, Michily Waul, Derrick Planter, Andre Reid, Jermain Anderson, Rohan Reid, Gregory Simpson and Phillip Peddie.
When the West Indies take on Pakistan from April 21 to 25 at Sabina Park, it will mark the 50th Test match being played in Jamaica. “To celebrate the milestone and its significance, several activities will be held during the Test match,” says Mark Neita, second vice-president and marketing director of the Jamaica Cricket Association. At the first Test cricket series at Sabina Park 87 years ago, Marylebone Cricket Club went up against the West Indies in the fourth and final Test in the home series. The Test match was known as the timeless game because the match lasted nine days and ended in a draw. The first triple-century in Test cricket was scored and the 19-year-old George Headley announced himself to the world by scoring 223. TREATS FOR FANS For this year’s series, the Trelawny Stadium will play host to the first games between the Presidents XI and the touring Pakistanis from April 15 to 17. The action will then move to Sabina Park, where lots of activities and treats will be in store for cricket fans. The players will comprise the current West Indies stars, including Kraigg Brathwaite, Shai Hope and Roston Chase and well-known members of the Pakistan team which is regarded as one of the top cricket teams in the world. For families coming out at the matches at Sabina Park, the children will not be left out of the fun. There will be a kiddies village on Saturday, April 22 while on Sunday, April 23, the ladies are encouraged to dress in retro clothing including hats. There will also be prizes for the best hats. There will also be a roll call for Test players who have participated in any of the 50 Test matches at Sabina Park. This will be done during the lunch interval on April 23. The Gleaner will be mounting an exhibition, depicting in photo the history of Test cricket at Sabina. This will be open to the public for viewing. The party stand will be open and organisers say that they are encouraging persons to bring their cooler, towels and umbrellas, and watch the games while sitting on the grass areas with their kids, family and friends. Organisers say that on match days, the cost for entry is $1,900, while season tickets will cost $6,900. Senior citizens are entitled to one free ticket. Children under 12 will be issued one free ticket with the purchase of an adult ticket, while mound tickets cost $1,000. NOTE: An earlier version had said ‘Fifty years of Sabina Park’. The first Test at Sabina Park was in fact played 87 years ago in 1930.