TORONTO:Jamaica’s team to the 2015 Toronto Para Pan American Games is now fully in the metropolitan and diverse city that is making a bid for the 2022 Olympic Games.Chef de mission Randy Jones and attachÈ Edmund Jones arrived in Toronto on Sunday and took up residence in the CIBC Para Pan American Athletes’ Village along Trinity Street, then immediately commenced preparing for the arrival of the team, which touched down yesterday.The mood in the camp is positive and from all indications the Jones’ team has made arrangements for the comfort of the cadre of athletes and officials.The focus is now on executing training sessions, as Jamaica’s athletes set their sights on the Games.LASTCHAMPIONSHIPSTeam captain Tanto Campbell, reflecting on the last championships in Guadalajara, Mexico, hinted that Toronto will be better.”The Toronto connection will be better than the Mexican,” he said.’Toronto we ready’ is the Jamaican team’s theme and president of the Jamaica Paralympic Association, Christopher Samuda, said “we’re not only ready, but we are ready to roll and thunder!”Jamaica will bow into action on Monday, August 10, with ‘The Ambassador’, Alphanso Cunningham, participating in the men’s discus (F51/F52/F53/F57) and newcomer Tevaughn Thomas in the men’s 100m (T45/T46/T47).
BEIJING, China:Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) general secretary, Garth Gayle, was elated with his election to the IAAF’s Technical Committee during yesterday’s Congress in Beijing and believes it bodes well for the country’s influence and overall development in the sport.Gayle, who was only recently elected to the council of the North America, Central America and Caribbean (NACAC) Association, pocketed 73 of 208 votes in the second round of voting to claim one of 12 available spots on the Technical Committee.In doing so, Gayle became the first Jamaican since Neville ‘Teddy’ McCook, who passed away in 2013, to sit in the IAAF.”I am elated and happy that the members of the IAAF family could find it fitting to give me their vote of confidence. It’s now for me to do Jamaica proud, NACAC as well, and also the 216-member federations of the IAAF,” said Gayle, who went on to highlight the duty of the Technical Committee.”Track and field is a multiplicity of events and there are rules that govern these events. The Technical Committee provides support to the Council with regards to current, as well as new innovations for each event; how to make the competitors compete at his or her best, as well as to remove any impediment that will prevent them from achieving their true potential,” said Gayle, who paid homage to McCook, Aris and former IAAF Regional Development Centre director, Lenford Levy, who also died last year.”I have learnt a lot from the late Teddy McCook, Howard Aris and Lenford Levy, who are persons whom I have worked with and it has paid dividends today. I am proud I have been able to do this in their honour and their good memory,” Gayle added. “This is my fifth congress, so I have been able to move around the corridors, make friends as well as also become known in the region, and I believe all of that paid dividends this morning.”Gayle is confident that the country, as well as the region by extension, stands to benefit from his addition to the committee.”We are now on the cutting edge of the latest rules and innovations, I will be able to be a part of those discussions. It allows me to interact with all the various countries on different theories and technologies to make that available to Jamaica and the Caribbean and to play my part in the development of the sport that I love,” said Gayle.”We’re there as a committee to enhance the performance of each athlete, the technical committee is there to work with all the different elements, broadcasters, sponsors, spectators – all that goes into making the production of track and field the spectacle that it is,” he added.- A.L.
4 p.m.: Montego Bay United vs Humble Lion – Wespow Park 4 p.m.: Portmore United vs Cavalier – Middlesex Intl College, Clarendon 4 p.m.: Rivoli United vs Boys’ Town – Spanish Town Prison Oval 3:30 p.m.: Tivoli Gardens vs Harbour View – Edward Seaga Complex 4 p.m.: Waterhouse vs UWI – Drewsland Stadium “It is a feeling of mixed emotions for me going home to Waterhouse, being on the other side, on the other bench, but it is not about me. It is about the team and what the teams need at this time,” said Gayle, a Waterhouse man through and through. Gayle said he does not expect his return to be an easy one as the hosts are in a position where they have to get a result. “Their backs are against the wall. They will be coming hard to get the three points, but I think we have what it takes to go there and get a win. As long as we are disciplined and play to the best of our ability, we will do it,” added Gayle, whose team will be boosted by the return of the experienced Girvon Brown. At Wespow Park, the hot-again former champions Montego Bay United will be aiming to take over the top spot, at least for 24 hours, when they host Humble Lion FC. The second-placed Montego United should start as favourites, but Humble Lion FC, who are just two points behind the hosts, are coming off a home win over the defending champions and should fancy their chances. Previous leaders Portmore United will be heading back to Clarendon, a place they called home when they were Hazard United, to take on Cavalier in a battle between the third- and fourth-placed teams. This game will be the first official match to be played at the Middlesex International College. Eighth-placed Rivoli United will entertain 11th-placed Boys’ Town at Prison Oval while 10th-placed Tivoli Gardens will be hoping to give coach Christopher Bender his first win of the season with a victory over Harbour View, who only recorded their first win of the season on Monday last. Jermaine Johnson’s presence should help Tivoli’s cause. Tomorrow night, surprise leaders Reno FC will get an early chance to show their title credentials when they play away to defending champions Arnett Gardens at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex. At the bottom looking up is not a position often associated with former champions Waterhouse, but that is where they find themselves after four games in the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) and anything but a win today against newcomers UWI (University of the West Indies) FC could put pressure on coach Calvert Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald enjoyed success in a previous stint, but has been able to lead his charges to just one point so far. Interestingly, that point was earned away to Rivoli, the club Fitzgerald left to return to Waterhouse. “We did not retain the services of Tramaine Stewart and Hughan Gray. These are significant losses. “Hughan was definitely the top attacking player in the league, was one of the top players in the Caribbean Cup last season and is a national representative, so these are not easy players to replace,” said Fitzgerald as he explained the difficulties his team had at the start of the season. Those losses, he said, were followed by the loss to injury of captain Damarley Samuels coupled with the late return of a number of senior players. Despite that, though, Fitzgerald said the spirit in the camp is high and the performances have been improving. “The team is definitely playing better as evidenced by the performance against Harbour View. In the second half, we looked more like a Waterhouse team, and we are hoping to pick it up from there. We really need these three points in the win column. “Even though the team has been going through a poor start, the team is energised. Our confidence and team spirit are not dampened,” he said. Leading his team into Waterhouse is a man who, last week, had a weight lifted off his shoulders as UWI FC recorded their first win, and a second successive one will increase their confidence. It is, however, not that easy for Marcel Gayle as, up to last year, he was on the Waterhouse bench. ‘mixed emotions’ Today’s games: Tomorrow’s game: 8:30 p.m.: Arnett Gardens vs Reno – Anthony Spaulding Complex Points standing P W D L GF GA GD Pts Reno 4 3 1 0 7 3 4 10 MoBay U 4 3 0 1 10 2 8 9 Portmore 4 3 0 1 5 2 3 9 Cavalier 3 2 1 0 3 0 3 7 H Lion FC 4 2 1 1 3 2 1 7 Arnett 4 2 0 2 7 2 5 6 H View 4 1 3 0 4 3 1 6 Rivoli 4 1 1 2 1 3 -2 4 UWI FC 4 1 0 3 1 7 -6 3 Tivoli 4 0 2 2 3 5 -2 2 Boys’ Town 4 0 2 2 2 9 -7 2 Waterhouse 4 0 1 3 1 5 -4 1
TOTTENHAM (4-2-3-1)LLORIS, WALKER, ALDERWIRELED, VERTONGHEN, ROSE,DIER, DEMBELE, SON, MASON, ERIKSEN, KANECHELSEA (4-2-3-1)COSTA, PEDRO, HAZARD, WILLIAN,MATIC, FABREGAS,KENEDY, TERRY, ZOUMA, IVANOVIC,BEGOVICTottenham have gone 12 games in the Barclays Premier League without defeat after beating West Ham United 4-1 last Sunday. That equalled the club’s record in the competition, set between December 2012 and March 2013, when they won eight and drew four. So if they draw or win against London neighbours Chelsea they will set a new club record.They will fancy Harry Kane to find the net; Spurs’ England striker scored twice in the win over West Ham to take his tally for the season to nine including eight in five Spurs matches – ahead of yesterday’s Europa League clash with Qarabaq, in Azerbaijan.More pointedly ahead of the visit of neighbours Chelsea, Kane has now scored 12 goals in 14 London derby games while in the calendar year of 2015, he has 24 Premier League goals, more than any other player in English football.Chelsea beat Norwich 1-0 last Saturday after three straight Premier League defeats. The reigning champions are still 15th, just five points clear of the relegation zone but 14 points behind leaders Leicester. But on Tuesday they enjoyed a comfortable 4-0 win in Israel against Maccabi Tel Aviv.Back to the Premier League and in this game last season Spurs won 5-3, inspired by Kane, who scored twice. That was only Spurs’ fourth win in 23 home games against Chelsea in the Premier League.
Third-seeded Stephen Shirley won the men’s Class Two title while Scott Jones lifted the Class Three crown in two early finals at the Jamaica National (JN) Open Tennis Championships at the Liguanea Club yesterday. Shirley stopped long-time rival, the top-seeded Leighton Burton 6-2, 2-6, 6-1. It was Shirley’s first win over his “main rival” in the last five meetings between the Class Two veterans. For his win, Shirley copped a prize from Singer and took home a shiny trophy. “I feel very good to win. Burton is a very tough competitor and the number one seed, and it’s always good to beat the number one,” he told The Sunday Gleaner after his win. His rival, Burton, said: “This is the biggest rivalry in Class Two. We have met five times in the finals and it is his (Stephen Shirley) first win,” he joked. Jones, the number one seed, rallied to beat number two seed, Jermaine Case 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 in another exciting affair. His prizes were also a trophy and Singer gift. Jones entered the match with a slipped disc, but was determined to win, so he took pain killers. He had been out of the sport for eight months. It was Jones’ fourth consecutive Class Three final, but his first win. “I am very happy for this win and looking forward to taking Class Two home in the coming year,” he said.
Social media is currently awash with talk of Christopher Taylor. The Calabar High School World Youth champion, with last year’s 45.27 over the 400m, is being hailed as the next great campaigner over the one-lap distance. This, despite his slender body structure, as against the traditional towers who continue to dominate the event. To counter that thought, one could argue that the Dominican Republic’s Luguelin dos Santos is making strides, but in terms of size, he too, cannot be seen as the quarter-mile stereotype. Taylor’s 4x400m relay anchor leg success of Kingston College’s Akeem Bloomfield (another giant) – with more physical development expected – has opened up other possibilities. The still-talked-about feat has catapulted the youngster into Rio Olympics territory. To facilitate that, the suggestion is that coach Michael Clarke should send him to the senior trials to contest with the big men, jostling for a place on that team. There have been ayes and nays as the point has received active consideration from many sides. Arguments in support of the former position are time-centric. His personal best from 2015, with the extra preparation and competition leading up, could improve to a 44+ clocking. In good or bad times, that ought to be sufficient for top six and an automatic booking for Rio. The naysayers acutely aware of the awesome talent come with a wider range of reasons. These all point to letting this one pass; “Give him more time to mature”, “maybe a year until the 2017 London World Championships”, they say. Some even, given a rugged road to and during Champs, cite what is itself a burnt-out word, that of ‘burnout’. To remind, he was exposed to the 200m, 400m and both 4x100m and 4x400m relays, significantly enhancing the Calabar victory cause by winning all four. Foster’s Fairplay has sympathy, with the ‘spare him’ sentiment. What strengthens the view is that several of the persons airing their opinion, whether deliberately or not, make no mention of Taylor’s likely participation in the July World Junior Championships. This would be the traditional and natural stepping stone to the senior global level, having conquered the Youth best in 2015. Gateway to greater achievement The mere thought is disturbing, as it ignores crucial elite competition, which is a gateway to greater achievement. One can recall when the great coach, Glen Mills, took over the reins of the current phenom, Usain Bolt. He pulled him from junior activity as his performances informed that he was way past that level. For those who would replicate that type of action, be reminded that Bolt was then 18 years old and had behind him the exposure and experience of four World level events, including the 2004 Athens Olympics. Taylor, in comparison and in that context, is still a mere toddler at age 16. A respected sports analyst with panoramic insight, Earl Bailey, has a well-rehearsed mantra: “If you are good enough, you are old enough.” Sorry, ‘Bald Eagle’, not going with you on this one. History will recall times in the past when a brilliant overperformer was thrown to the wolves to disastrous effect. Although available sources are silent on the matter, this columnist remembers a situation back in 2004. Vere Technical standout, Simone Facey, blasted all in her path to a Champs 200m win in the staggering time of 22.71. The field included Anneisha McLaughlin from the camp of arch-rivals Holmwood Technical, who was the World Junior silver medallist from two years prior. Facey’s eyes and heart were firmly set on the sprint double at the Grossetto World Juniors, only a few months away. But her handlers wanted more. With the traditional top six guaranteed a seat on the flight to the Athens Olympics in that August, she was entered in the trials to run with the big girls. Suffice to say that a resultant injury made it her last race of the season. Foster’s Fairplay, to satisfy the ‘Taylor for Rio’ lobby, will say this: Put him in the junior trials. Say he runs sub-45 in the final. Given that such a performance has him in the top seven at both junior and senior levels, then include him on the Olympics relay squad. Precedence has been established, especially where there are medal prospects. Just being there should do him a world of good. [email protected]
Long-time head coach of the St Elizabeth Technical (STETHS) track and field programme Reynaldo Walcott, is the being heavily tipped to take over the reigns at the Wolmer’s Boys school following the recent coaching shuffle at the Heroes Circle – based institution. News broke last week that the entire Wolmer’s coaching staff led by Christopher Harley, who took over from David Riley in 2012 was shown the door following disappointment with the team’s showing at the recent ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls Athletics Championships. Wolmer’s Boys finished ninth with 50 points. Walcott is the man behind STETHS’ re-emergence as a solid athletics programme over the past few season, leading the team to top 10 finishes in the girls’ section and top five finishes among the boys over past few years. He is also a member of the MVP Track Club, which is of course headed by veteran coach Stephen Francis, a past student and influential voice on the Wolmer’s athletics programme.
Emerging Jamaica all-rounder Rovman Powell led the University of The West Indies (UWI) to a first-innings victory over Kensington in quarter-final action of the Jamaica Cricket Association Senior Cup at the Sir Frank Worrell Oval yesterday.The 22-year-old Powell, who played one match for Jamaica in the recently concluded WICB First-Class Championship and was surprisingly drafted by Jamaica Tallawahs for the upcoming Caribbean Premier League, scored 80 before returning to claim four for 20 in the drawn affair.In another quarter-final match yesterday, Kingston, with half-centuries from all-rounder Derval Green and Brandon King, and fourwickets from left-arm spinner Patrick Harty, got the better of St Catherine CC at Chedwin Park.At the Sir Frank Worrell Oval, the UWI first made 250 with Powell getting support from Javaughn Buchanan, 49, and Mark Parchment, 33.OUTSTANDING BOWLERSOff-spinner Shamar Anderson, four for 59, fast bowler Nicholson Gordon, three for 23, and left-arm spinner, Ryan Francis two for 56, claimed most wickets.Kensington, in reply, were bowled out for 137 thanks to Powell and Horace Linton, who took four for 37. Anderson 23, David Bernard Jr, 21 not out, and Horace Miller, 20, made most runs.Batting a second time, the UWI closed on 105 for three with Jamaica captain Paul Palmer Jr, ending on 32 not out, and Powell, 18, not out.”It was a good result, one that we wanted and needed,” said UWI coach, Robert Samuels. “On day one, I thought we batted well under trying circumstances given the Kensington bowling attack.”They were then 60-odd for three overnight, and we returned bowled well and got the job done. Credit must also be given to Powell and the way he played.”At Chedwin Park, Green hit 86, King 50 and Aaron Johnson gathered 38 in Kingston’s first innings total of 244. Odean Brown, three for 58, and Stephan Casey, three for 54, and fast bowler, Brian Buchanan, three for 59, were the top wicket takers.St Catherine were dismissed for 99 with Harty four for 24, and fellow left-armer Paul Harrison, three for 13, claiming most victims. Mariano Dixon made a topscore of 40 with former national captain Tamar Lambert making 10 and Danza Hyatt, four.The UWI and Kingston have now joined Melbourne and St Thomas in the semi-finals, which are scheduled to be played next weekend.
IN-form trainer Anthony ‘Baba’ Nunes continued where he left off last season, saddling three winners on the McKay Security Limited-sponsored 10-race programme at Caymanas Park yesterday, including the grey SOY EL SENOR in the New Year’s Day Trophy. Offering odds of 2-1 in the 1300-metre co-feature for four-year-olds and up, SOY EL SENOR, ridden by bang in-form stable apprentice Linton Steadman, got first run (inside) on the howling 1-5 favourite BUBBLING KITTEN entering the straight and under a bustling ride, held her at bay by 11/2 lengths for a decisive victory. It was SOY EL SENOR’s second consecutive win over the distance and the four-year-old son of He’stherealthing – JosÈ Marsan completed a triple for Nunes, who was awarded the second race in the Stewards’ Room via 5-1 chance HELLO LADY following the disqualification of first past the post MY COMPANION (the odds on favourite). He also won the third with 1-2 favourite LEGENDARY PLEASURE by a nose from CHEERS, with Steadman aboard. Meanwhile, the $1 million renewal of the McKay Security Trophy over 1820 metres for $180,000 claimers, also resulted in a close finish with 2-1 chance BATIDOR DE MUNDO staving off the fast finishing BARS OF GOLD (6-1) by a neck in a field of 12. It was a fitting victory for BATIDOR DE MUNDO, whose owner/trainer Gregory Forsyth is a security personnel at McKay Security. Forsyth was elated with the win: “I claimed this horse from trainer Errol Waugh in late October with this race in mind,” he disclosed. “Having dropped class for this valuable race, I was pretty confident of victory and although it was close in the end, after he was sent through by the rider Jevanne Erwin at the half mile, showed good battling qualities to hold on for the win.” Earlier in the afternoon, trainer Gary Subratie completed a double when AWESOME DESTINY romped home as the 3-5 favourite in the CTL Fan Appreciation Day Trophy overnight allowance race over 1820 metres. The American four-year-old filly was ridden by champion apprentice Bebeto Harvey for owners We’re Family which includes former JFF president, Lincoln “Happy Sutherland’. Subratie also won the opening race, the Racing Office Plaque over 1400 metres for maiden three-year-olds with the front running even money chance GREAT FAITH, ridden by former champion Dane Nelson for owner Don Wehby and his father (Oakridge Farms). Steadman and Erwin shared the riding honours with two winners each. FITTING WIN
The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) has announced that the National Under-17 men’s football team will be based in a three-month residential camp until they depart for the CONCACAF final-round qualifiers in April. For some time, head coach Andrew Edwards has been advocating this move, as he believes it is necessary to give the team what he describes as a competitive edge when they team go up against the giants of the region for a place in the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in India this October. Edwards said the camp will allow the technical staff to cater to the players’ nutritional needs, give full medical support, train more consistently and play more practice games. Most important, the players’ education will not be compromised as the players will be provided with schooling on regular school days. “We are working with a schedule which states that the boys attend school between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. and we train before and after that. For their medical treatment, it depends on what is required or the evaluation that is necessary, so we might have to take them from training or class for a time to facilitate treatment. But we try everything possible to not affect either training or class,” he told The Gleaner. Edwards calculates upwards of 90 training sessions before the team’s expected departure in April, and he says if they manage the camp the right way, they can get the players up to a competitive level. “This residential camp is absolutely an important aspect of the overall preparation. It means that we have the players for an extensive period where we can put them through all facets of the game. It will give us an opportunity to do things in a consistent way, evaluate and assess the players more stridently,” Edward said. The camp started yesterday and Edwards said they are not contemplating any breaks. “The JFF is doing this in order to give these players the best chance of representation for the country, as the vision is that these players are the future of our national Under-20, Under-23 and Senior teams,” he added. Jamaica will play in Group C with USA, Mexico and El Salvador in the CONCACAF final round, where four World Cup places are available.