Group A: – Clan Carthy vs Jamaica College – Tivoli vs Calabar at Edward Seaga Stadium Group D: – Penwood vs St Mary’s College at Cling Cling Oval Group E: – Bridgeport vs Wolmer’s at Dunbeholden field – Kingston High vs St Jago Group G: – Campion College vs Kingston College – Jose Marti vs Camperdown (Home teams are named first and all games start at 3:30 p.m.) Wolmer’s Boys will face Bridgeport High in a top Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)/FLOW Manning Cup football competition Group E clash at Dunbeholden field in St Catherine, today, starting at 3:30 p.m. St Jago and Wolmer’s are locked on 13 points apiece in the group, however, St Jago have a superior goal difference. Bridgeport occupy third position on nine points, followed by Mona (6) and Kingston High (0). With that picture, the Wolmer’s camp is fully aware that a win would put them in a better position for one of two automatic spots in the group to advance to the next stage. Today’s games “This game coming up against Bridgeport is very important. We knew that the games against the St Catherine teams (Bridgeport and St Jago) are key to us advancing from the group. We had a draw against Jago on Friday, and now we face Bridgeport,” coach of Wolmer’s Vassell Reynolds told The Gleaner yesterday. “We are most definitely looking for a win, but that won’t be easy playing away to a team that is still in contention,” the veteran schoolboy coach reasoned. Alphanso Gooden is Wolmer’s top scorer with four goals, and he should get good support from Delano Smith on two goals and captain Kashaun Smith. Meanwhile, Bridgeport will also be coming all out for a victory that would improve their slim hope of qualifying for the next round. Bridgeport’s new coach Garnett Lawrence is looking forward to this return fixture after losing the first game 2-0 at Wolmer’s last month. “We have been saying to the team all week that this is the game that could make or break us. It is important to secure all three points to stay in contention for a place in the next round,” Lawrence who took over as coach this season, said. In another game, defending champion Jamaica College is highly expected to easily beat Clan Carthy, and cement a spot from Group A to the next round. – M. S. IMPORTANT GAME
Recently there appeared a story borne of and written by this columnist. It featured a suggestion, albeit a public one, to two of Jamaica’s best ever sprinters, who sat atop the planet during the 2005 to 2007 period. Quoting from the article, Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson “had produced positive samples when tested for forbidden substances … Under World body dictates, drugs in the system meant one overarching thing – the performer is ultimately responsible. The verdict was guilty, as charged.” The unfolding of the drama continues. “They copped 18-month bans which were later reduced on appeal to six months by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). It was in an attempt to salvage a damaged reputation that the matter was taken to the higher court and following that, the revelation came that the company that sold the substance to the athletes had delivered monetary compensation.” The suggestion was made that the two athletes make a contribution (in cash or kind) to the high schools where their enormous talent was nurtured. This would be a noble deed and not without precedent. Programs across the sport’s firmament need funds to sustain themselves. It is not inconceivable that there are some athletic gifts languishing at either institution that are waiting to be further developed, with lack of sufficient funds being the obstacle. In summary, the bottom line is that both schools, Charlemont High (Powell) and Manchester High (Simpson) could make productive use of gifted funds. This is said in absence of what this columnist thinks would have been an unnecessary verification check. This columnist does not take lightly the denial of a basic human right. However, the words of detractors to the thought of a ‘sharing of the wealth’ continue to rankle. They ignited the revolutionary and repressive thought of applying the muzzle to persons, who, as the saying goes, are entitled to their opinion. Open to question here is how much should such an entitlement be allowed to corrupt the mind of the reasonable and well thinking? A responder to the article, Wayne, and they are to be encouraged, described it as “an improper suggestion”, going on to lambaste by further comment “tek yu eye offa di people dem money, some a unu too damn grudgeful and bad mind”, ending his typed assault with “disgusting’. Another, Raymond, posting under a banner as though associated with Powell’s school, identified the thought as “bad mind active as usual!!!”. Yet, another, a female, Georgia, was equally dismissive, asking some questions. “Share which wealth? Where were the supporters when they were stand accused? “No money can remove the tarnish, but it will help them and their family and who they want to give.” Tony wanted to know if the writer was “petitioning for the athletes (Powell and Simpson) to give up some of their settlement $$,” while wondering how serious was the writer. Foster’s Fairplay is fuming, straining at the bit, to say: “Shoo and leave the studio”. The article spoke to offering assistance in a struggle, to produce similar brilliance that these two outstanding and well-loved athletes have. They both have represented Jamaica with distinction, pocketing major medals at the highest level. Yet, the four posters would like to see some little ones for the future suffer for the lack of well needed funds, than follow in the footsteps of those who came before. Shame on you. Your voices are better not heard on this subject.
Leroy BrownGleaner WriterDamion Johnson and Shaneka Knight took top honours in the General Accident Open Tennis Championships, which ended at the Liguanea Club, New Kingston recently.The one week long tournament attracted 120 participants and produced excellent and competitive tennis throughout.Fittingly, it ended with a thrilling battle between Johnson and former Davis Cup captain Dwayne Pagon, that went to three sets. Johnson eventually prevailed, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.In the female final, Knight, who was seeded at No. 2 in the tournament, proved too powerful for the No. 1 seeded Ffion Fletcher, winning 6-4, 6-1.Pagon, who had an excellent tournament won the Men’s Professional 35 or older players, by defeating Yussuf Migoko 6-0, 6-2.Previously an amateur tournament, there was an upgrade this year with sponsors General Accident Insurance Company agreeing to come up with substantial prize money and making it an Open tournament.The Johnson versus Pagon clash produced the most exciting and competitive tennis of the tournament, and Pagon, who is now back to his old form, pushed the No. 2 ranked Jamaica player all the way. Johnson had consistently good all round court play throughout, but Pagon, although losing his service games several times, showed remarkable resilience and refused to capitulate.Daniel Hill won the Top 16 Invitational Junior Doubles event with 22 points with Cole McNair as runner up with 16 points. Karl James won the Members Invitational with nine points from Peter Berry with eight points. The Liguanea Club team of David and Stephen Shirley and Stephen Steele won the Club Team competition. The Oaklands team of Leighton Burton, Lloyd Nelson and Garth Darby, were the runners up. Matthew Rodriguez and Kobi Wilcott won the Sportsmanship awards.Sharon Donaldson the Managing Director of General Accident Insurance Company, said that she was very pleased with the growth of the tournament each year. She praised tournament organiser Llockett McGregor for the high standards seen and stated that the aim of her company was to make the tournament bigger and better each year.
LAUSANNE, Switzerland:Since her departure from high school, 29-year-old Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has spent all of her senior career in track and field under the guidance of MVP head coach Stephen Francis.Francis, arguably the top sprint coach in the world, has guided Fraser-Pryce to seven individual world titles. These include three IAAF World Championships 100m, an IAAF World Championships 200m, two Olympic 100m, and one IAAF World 60m Indoor title.With that record, most people expected Fraser-Pryce to remain with her successful coach until she decided to hang up her spikes.However, during the Rio Olympic Games, the bombshell dropped. Fraser-Pryce would part company with her long-time coach. At first, many believed it to be a wild rumour before Coach Francis confirmed that the news was factual.What are the real reasons for Fraser-Pryce’s departure?ATHLETISSIMA DIAMOND LEAGUEOn Wednesday evening, The Gleaner caught up with Francis at his hotel in Lausanne, Switzerland, a day before the Athletissima Diamond League meet, where four of his charges, including Thompson, were down to compete.Francis was quizzed on the likely reasons for his star sprinter’s departure from his camp.As usual, he was frank with his responses.”Shelly informed me that she was unhappy with the job I had done with her this year,” Francis said while accepting the blame. He added that she said she was going to make a change.LOOKING AT THE FUTUREHe continued: “She had some good years, but looking at the future, I think she has every right to assess what is good for her. Staying with me as her coach was not best for her and so she told me that she was going to leave.”After guiding her to several titles at the highest level, Francis was asked if he thought this was a big slap in the face for him.”No, I do not think that way … the past is not relevant to a lot of people when they are making decisions about the future, and the most important thing for her and any athlete is ‘What will the future hold for me?”If she is going to continue in the sport, she cannot dwell in the past, regardless of how well she did in the past, and if she is unhappy and does not think she can achieve what she did in the past, she has to make that decision to move on,” said Francis.Francis was then asked if he thought the rise of his new star, Elaine Thompson, who won the sprint double in Rio, was a factor in Fraser- Pryce’s decision to exit the MVP Track Club.”I think we should take her word as it is. I mean, it is impossible for anybody to know what is in her mind. I have the tendency to take people’s words as they know what is going on inside of them, so even though it is tempting to make that kind of connection, I think it is perfectly reasonable that she doesn’t think what is being done in her training is good for her as she thinks that what has been done the past year was enough to have held her back, and she wants to move on,” he said.Asked if he thought that the fact that she had not performed at her best in the past year despite great success is over the years justified her leaving or if was there something else.”No, I do not think so. I think she is convinced that given the environment that is there, the setback could have been handled better and if changes which she wanted to be made were made, she would have had a better chance of defending her 100 metres title, and it is for her to make that decision. And it is she who has to bear the consequences, and I am hoping that her new training situation will justify what she said.”In the past, athletes who have departed from Francis to go elsewhere have not had the same success they had under his guidance, so Francis was asked if he thought Fraser-Pryce was special and could have success wherever she went.”I have found over the years that athletes who I have coached quickly developed a sense that the importance of their coach is reduced in their mind no matter how lowly a beginning they had. Eventually, in their mind, they believe they are extremely talented and my role is incidental to their success, and it is human.”In Shelly’s case, I think she has been through a lot of success. As a result, her expectation is very high and it is difficult to accept results which are not the best as she is used to it, and I think she has to be in a situation where there is a continued search for improvement. In this case, she thinks improvement is at an end and she has to take chances to see if she can get better,” concluded Francis.
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (CMC):Vishaul Singh was dismissed four runs shy of a century, after leading two solid partnerships to steady West Indies A, who suffered two batting meltdowns against Sri Lanka A on the opening day of their first unofficial Test here yesterday.Singh, a middle-order batsman from Guyana, top scored with 96 to lead rescue efforts as West Indies A were bowled out for 276 at the Khettarama Stadium.Captain Shamarh Brooks played a key innings as well with a knock of 65, while an unbeaten 45 from Kemar Roach was the only other notable contribution.Opener Kieran Powell was dismissed for 36 and dropped Test opener Rajendra Chandrika continued his poor form when he was trapped lbw by Lahiru Kumara.THE RESCUE ACTThe visitors slumped to 56 for three after winning the toss and electing to bat before left-handed Singh arrived to initiate the first rescue act.He put together 125 for the fourth wicket with captain Brooks as the two set about the task of repairing the damage caused from early pressure applied by the Sri Lankan bowlers.Singh faced 187 balls and scored nine boundaries, while Brooks also hit the same number of boundaries, from his 107-ball occupation of the crease.West Indies suffered a second collapse when they lost three wickets for four runs before Singh rose to the occasion again with a 66-run stand for the seventh wicket with Roach.Roach, who struck three fours and the only two sixes of the innings, was unbeaten on 45.The standout bowlers for Sri Lanka were Asitha Fernando2-35, Charith Asalanka 2-53 and Asela Gunaratne 3-27.Sri Lanka A faced one over before stumps were drawn but did not score.
Netball Jamaica (NJ) will begin its search for a new Sunshine Girls coach early next year, after Minneth Reynolds’ contract was not renewed by the Paula Daley-Morris led administration.Wayne Lewis, a director at NJ, said Reynolds’ contract expired on November 30 and so the fact that she submitted a letter of resignation on December 31th was of no effect.”This is obviously an indication that she is not planning to come back to her job,” said Lewis. “This is also null and void for her to resign when her contract expired on November 30.”Lewis said he was very surprised that Reynolds did not seek an extension of her contract days after the Sunshine Girls’ 2-1 away series win over rivals England Roses in the United Kingdom.DECISION ACCEPTED”I am surprised that she would have made the decision not to seek to renew her contract after the team just won a series abroad. We have accepted the fact that her contract has expired and we do not have a coach right now.”Lewis did not say whether the association intended to extend the contract.Meanwhile, the netball director told The Gleaner that efforts will now be made to find a replacement.”Our next board meeting is due early in the New Year, and at that time, we will start the process of selecting a new coach,” he stated.When contacted yesterday, Reynolds said she would not discuss the matter.Reynolds was appointed Sunshine Girls coach in 2014, taking over from Oberon Pitterson-Nattie.She has had mixed results during her tenure as head coach as the senior netball team finished fourth at the 2015 World Championships in Sydney, Australia.The Jamaicans also failed to win a match against the top sides Australia and New Zealand under Reynolds’ watch.
ST. JOHN’S, Antigua, (CMC): Leeward Islands Hurricanes head coach Reginald Benjamin said he was concerned that rookie West Indies fast bowler Alzarri Joseph has failed to fire since his return to action in the WICB Regional 4-Day Tournament. Joseph was sidelined for a little over a month following his return home to Antigua from the West Indies Tour of Zimbabwe to tend to his ailing mother. He, however, returned to action for the Hurricanes in the last two matches of the 4-Day tournament before the long break for the Christmas and New Year’s holiday, plus the Regional Super50 Tournament. But the 20-year-old has not lit a spark, taking just four wickets in the period, much to the disappointment of Benjamin, as the Hurricanes suffered successive losses to the Windward Islands Volcanoes and Jamaica Scorpions, sliding to fifth in the tournament. “He is not coming and hitting the lines and lengths efficiently, and we didn’t want at the beginning of the season, to be depending on (Rahkeem Cornwall) only,” Benjamin said. “As you can see, Gavin Tonge and other players have stepped up, and with Alzarri coming back, we were sure that we would have an edge to our bowling attack, but thus far it hasn’t paid off.” Benjamin believes the break will be good for not only Joseph, but the rest of the Hurricanes squad, giving them a chance to regroup before tackling the Super50 tournament and the remainder of the four-day matches. “After the Guyana game, Hugh Gore, our manager, and I had a meeting and based on our observations, one of the things we came up with is that some players started getting complacent,” said Benjamin. “So we saw it right at that point, and even in Trinidad, and in Windward Islands. We addressed it against Jamaica, but (the break) comes at a very opportune time because we have to go back to the drawing board. “We should be second on the table, but we had a game against the Volcanoes, where we basically allowed that to get away from us, and I think that had a negative effect on us for the game against the Scorpions.”
A double century from Guyanese-born opener Trevor Griffith powered Melbourne CC into the semi-final of the Jamaica Cricket Association All-Island 50-Overs Tournament.The previously out-of-form Jamaica Scorpions stroke-maker, slammed 237 to lead his team to a 182 runs win over the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) at Up Park Camp yesterday.Batting first, after being asked to take first strike, Melbourne posted a challenging 407 for seven off their allotted overs with Sadiki Bolt, 62, best assisting Griffith.MOST WICKETSPart-time off-spinner Rasheed Outar, two for 65, and Rayan Bennett, two for 71, ended with most wickets.The army men, despite a quick-fire 55 from Jermaine Harrison, and 39 from Rasheed Outar, could only total 225 in their response.This was against part-time off-spinner Bolt, who claimed five for 43, and fast bowler Oshane Thomas, two for 51.In another quarter-final result, West Indies Under-19 bowling all-rounder Odean Smith took six for 61 to guide Kingston to a 85 runs win over St Thomas CA at Kensington Park.Electing to bat, Kingston scored 265 off 44.3 overs with Kirk Harris, 82, and Aaron Johnson, 74, making most runs against Omar Brooks, four for 60.St Thomas, in reply, were then bowled out for 180 with 5.1 overs remaining. Andre Bryce and Kenroy Williams with 39 each, were the top runs scorers for the losers.Left-arm spinner Patrick Harty, two for 36, best supported Smith.The other semi-finalists are defending champions St Catherine CC and Kensington, who defeated Lucas and Westmoreland, respectively, in their quarter-final matchups on Saturday.
He was awarded the Dominic James MVP Award for his brilliant season. “I would leave (Jamaica) if I got the offer from this college; I think it is the best choice,” he pointed out. Jemison is expecting to leave high school this Summer, noting also that he wants to earn a place in the national senior team. In spite of his professional ambitions, he is, however, keen to continue his education. “I want the education and football, and then take it on from there. I trained with the national team, and it’s a different feeling from schoolboy football, but I know I will be ready for it, once I get more time playing with the older guys, and just keep working harder,” he added. Outstanding Wolmer’s Boys goalkeeper Shamar Jemison is hoping to successfully complete his ongoing trial with Florida Memorial University, while looking forward to a future with Jamaica’s senior Reggae Boyz team. The 19-year-old goalie’s one-week trial began Monday. It will run to Saturday at the Florida-based institution in the United States. The team is coached by Edil Pavon. Jemison’s talent caught that coach’s eyes at the 8th Annual Casa Youth Classic, held at Lauderhill Hill Sports Complex, in Florida, last December. “I feel good in myself to be on trial, as I get to meet players from all over, like Brazil and Argentina,” Jemison told The Gleaner. The Jamaican will have to compete with 35 other possible recruits, noting he knows a few other Jamaicans at the Florida campus. “It’s always my first choice to be a professional goalkeeper, and after training every day, the coach tells me this is my team,” an optimistic Jemison reasoned. The player represented FLOW Super Cup champions and beaten Manning Cup finalists Wolmer’s in 20 matches last season, keeping a sterling 18 clean sheets. AWARDED FOR BRILLIANT SEASON
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has so meticulously structured the rules of engagement as they relate to stored samples and retroactive drug testing that it is virtually impossible for the accused athletes to be judged fairly. The Nesta Carter case is a classic case in point, where the Olympic governing body, after the original sample taken in 2008 was deemed clean by their own testing machinery, eight years later, then declares an adverse analytical finding from the same sample for a substance that was not on the banned list at the time of taking the original sample. The now banned substance, methylhexanamine, was indeed added to the banned list some three years after Nesta gave his sample in Beijing in 2008. Injustice does not get any more fundamental than that. If this scenario was a matter of a crime and law, Nesta Carter would walk away a free man, with the option of suing for damages. Athletes have absolutely no legal obligation not to take any substance that is not on the banned list, therefore Nesta Carter, and or any other active athlete should, in principle, be free to ingest any substance into his system as long as that substance is not on the banned list. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) should put every single performance-enhancing substance they can define scientifically on the banned list and go testing for them. Outside of that, it should all be fair game. My bewilderment is that a principle so simple and fundamental is being violated so publicly and with such vulgarity, with very minimal pushback. The claim by the IOC is that methylhexanamine, the substance found in Carter’s eight-year-old sample, has similar chemical properties to tuaminoheptane, which was on the banned list at the time. therefore, the essence of what the IOC is saying is that in this “similarity” lays the breach by Carter. In science, however, “similar” cannot be interpreted to mean “same”, and this is the case that the IOC is seeking to make, and because of their unique position of power, they will more than likely they will continue to make. This is akin to a man being found “not guilty” of the specific crime of “washing cars” in 2016 because washing cars was not illegal in 2016. Washing trucks, however, was illegal in 2016, but despite not washing any trucks in 2016 and washing only cars, that man is now being charged and convicted retroactively for washing cars in 2016 because it was “similar” to washing trucks and is now illegal in 2017. That is IOC justice. One is forced to wonder if the flawed principles surrounding this Nesta Carter case are so clearly visible to the untrained eye, what kind of approach did Carter’s legal team take in arguing this case? what other angle could they take? If Carter tested for a substance that was on the banned list in 2008 when his sample was taken, this conversation would not be taking place because it would not be relevant. It is, however, a spurious denial of scientific principles to accuse and convict a person on the premise that similar is the same. Methylhexanamine is not even close in spelling or pronunciation to tuanimoheptane. The latter was on the banned list in 2008 and was duly not found in Carter’s sample. the former was not on the banned list in 2008, thus Carter had all the right to ingest it into his system. Nesta Carter, and to a lesser extent Jamaica’s entire programme, is being brought to shame and scandal by an action that is unjust in principle. Having listened extensively to almost all the discussions and analysis surrounding this issue, I find that for the most part, the discussions have been charged with self-righteousness and emotionalism while missing the very essence of justice. IOC justice