Wigan Athletic hopes to lure Jamaica international Jamal Lowe back to the DW Stadium following the team’s return to the English Championship.

The 27-year-old recently secured promotion to the English Premier League with AFC Bournemouth where he scored 7 goals this season.  Following the team’s return to the top flight, however, doubts have been raised surrounding the likelihood of the player getting any significant game time.

In fact, Lowe was left out of the squad for the team's crucial promotion fixture against Nottingham Forest, which may not augur well for the future.   

Wigan in the meantime are preparing for life back in the second tier following their promotion from League One.  Lowe was a popular figure at Wigan having made some 46 appearances between 2019 and 2020.

Wigan could do with some reinforcements to their squad as they continue to eventually plot a return to the Premier League.

Jamaica international Michael Hector will once again be on the hunt for a new club come the end of the next month when he is expected to leave recently promoted Fulham.

The 29-year-old defender has been with the club since 2019 and was a part of the successful promotion-chasing team in the 2020 season.   The Cottagers will once again be heading back to the topflight after winning the league championship a few weeks ago.

This time around, however, the player found playing time hard to come by and accumulated just seven starts in all competitions for the Cottagers last season.  In preparing for life in the top flight again the club recently announced that it would part ways with as many as 14 players with the Jamaican international among them.

Hector has enjoyed a nomadic experience in the English Leagues to date having played for some 18 clubs, including Reading (twice) and Hull City.  For Jamaica, he has made 35 appearances, last representing the team in July of last year.

 

 

 

 

Leeward Islands Hurricanes spinner Rahkeem Cornwall produced a solid spell of his own to end the T&T Red Force resistance and secure a 187-run win in the West Indies Championship at the Diego Martin Complex.

The Red Force began the day behind the 8 ball, facing a deficit of 316 runs and with six wickets already lost.  Yannic Cariah, who resume the day on 37, however, did his best to keep T&T in the contest eventually going on to score a gritty 100 from 180 balls.

His overnight partner Bryan Charles only managed to add 16 to his total before being Cornwall’s first victim, caught by Amir Jangoo.

Anderson Phillip’s stay at the crease lasted just five deliveries as he was dismissed for 4, undone lbw by Hayden Walsh Jr.  Jayden Seales partnered with Cariah to put on 86 for the 9th wicket but Cornwall ended the partnership when he accounted for the valuable wicket of Cariah who was caught by Kieron Powell.  The innings was brought to an end when Seales was dismissed on 33 by Sheeno Berridge.  Overall Cornwall ended with second-innings figures of 4 for 50.

Spinner Verasammy Permaul grabbed a four-wicket haul as the Guyana Harpy Eagles enforced a follow-on after the Barbados Pride fell 244 runs short of their first innings total in the West Indies Championship match at Queen’s Park Oval.

At the close of play, Barbados Tridents were 44 without loss with openers Kraigg Brathwaite (17) and Sheyne Moseley (25) at the crease.  Earlier, in the Pride’s first innings it was Permaul who got the breakthrough after removing Brathwaite for 17, before adding the dangerous Shai Hope and Roston Chase to his tally.

Hope had, however, staged a furious fightback after coming to the crease with his team in trouble at 49 for 3.  Hope went on to make 119 from 2oo deliveries, before being caught by Leon Johnson, which ended the Pride’s resistance at 266 all-out.  Prior to that Shane Dowrich added an enterprising 44 from 60 and shared in 64 runs partnership with Hope but became Permaul’s third wicket after also being caught by Johnson.

In Guyana’s first innings Tagenarine Chanderpaul and Gudakesh Motie each made a century as the team declared at 490 for 7.

Another brutal spell from Leewards Hurricanes pace bowler Jeremiah Louis pushed the T&T Red Force to the verge of defeat in the West Indies Championship at the Diego Martin Sports Complex.

At the close of play, the Red Force were left on 143 for 6, still, some 316 runs short of the victory target.  Similar to his performance in the first innings, it was Louis who devastated the top order when the T&T unit took to the crease for a second time. 

T&T opener Jeremy Solozano only managed to score 6 before he was dismissed by Kieron Powell off the bowling of Sheeno Berridge.  Then Louis went to work, removing Tion Webster, Darren Bravo, and Jason Mohammed to leave Red Force struggling at 53 for 4.

Yannic Cariah and Joshua Da Silva briefly came together to stage a rescue act, putting on 47 for the fifth wicket but Da Silva’s innings came to an end when he was trapped lbw by Rahkeem Cornwall.

Cariah remains at the crease on 37 and has been joined by Brian Charles, who is not out on 6, following the dismissal of Akeal Hosein who was bowled by Cornwall on 10.

Earlier, enterprising half-centuries from Kieron Powell (83) and Devon Thomas (84) had pushed the Hurricanes' second innings to 241 for 7 declared after resuming the day on 23.  Cariah was the pick of the Red Force bowler, having taken 3 for 33, while Hosein picked up 2 for 64.

Reigning Olympic 110m hurdles champion Hansle Parchment has declared himself in good form ahead of a showdown with compatriot and 2016 champion Omar McLeod at the Birmingham Diamond League on Saturday.

With the World Championships and Commonwealth Games on the schedule as major games this year, the Jamaicans are expected to see quite a bit of each other over the coming months.

McLeod, unfortunately, did not get the opportunity to defend his title as he missed out on making the Jamaica squad after failing to qualify from the country’s national trials and will no doubt have his eyes set on redemption later this year.

For his part, Parchment has in the meantime established himself as the country’s top performer at the event and will be looking to keep the wins coming in.

“So far I am feeling good, I think I am in good form,” Parchment told members of the media on Thursday.

“I still have a lot of work to do but I am looking forward to executing a really good race [in Birmingham] and hoping to get a really lovely time on this beautiful track.”

The race will also feature former world indoor champion Andrew Pozzi of Great Britain.”

West Indies all-rounder Kieron Pollard has signed for England T20 Vitality Blast club Surrey ahead of the season.

The 35-year-old big-hitter is expected to make a rare appearance in the competition having previously represented Somerset in 2011.  Having recently competed in the India Premier League (IPL), the player will not be available for the start of the competition next Wednesday (25th) but will join up with the team for the second game on the 31st.

Pollard will be joining compatriot Sunil Narine at The Kia Oval in a competition that will also feature Dwayne Bravo (Worcestershire) and Kemar Roach.

Pollard, a five-time champion with IPL team Mumbai Indians, will be looking to rediscover his form after a disappointing IPL campaign.

 “The Kia Oval is a special place to play, especially in front of a full house.

“This Surrey side is full of talent and should certainly be mounting a challenge for the title.

“I hope that my experience will add a vital ingredient to the club’s success this year.”

 Tagenarine Chanderpaul and Gudakesh Motie each crafted centuries as Guyana Harpy Eagles completed a dominant showing at the crease, against Barbados Pride, declaring at 490 for 7 on day 2 of the West Indies Championship.

At the close of play, Barbados had already lost two wickets in pursuit of the massive target with captain Kraigg Brathwaite (17) and Sharmarh Brooks (2) already back in the Pavilion.

Earlier, resuming the day at 219 for 4 Chanderpaul, who toiled to 64 on the previous day, pushed on to triple figures and remained unbeaten on 140 off a marathon 434 balls.  Throughout the innings, the batsman was part of several fruitful partnerships.  Tevin Imlac added 53 to feature in a 94-run partnership with Chanderpaul but Motie was even more devastating, adding a dispiriting 110 off 118 deliveries at the bottom of the innings.  Motie was eventually caught by Sharmarh Brooks off the bowling of Keon Harding.  Akeem Jordan was the pick of the Pride bowlers with 3 for 108, while Raymond Reifer took 2 for 37.

Brooks and Shai Hope will be the batsmen to resume the chase for Barbados at the start of the third day.

 

Pace bowlers Jeremiah Louis and Colin Archibald claimed a pair of four-fors to back up a sterling opening day effort from Kieron Powell as Leeward Island Hurricanes solidified their advantage over T&T Red Force on day two of the West Indies Championship.

At the close of play, the Hurricanes were 23 without loss, having earlier blown away the Red Force for 140, well short of their first innings total of 357.  Resuming the day at 308 – 7, overnight batsman Jeremiah Lewis eventually went to a useful 42, but eventually ran out of partners at the crease.

In pursuit of the total, Red Force got off to a disastrous start.  Top-order batsmen Tion Webster (0), Jeremy Solazano (0), and Jason Mohammed (0) all perished with scoring, while Darren Bravo added just 7 before being dismissed by Colin Archibald to leave the team in tatters at 10 for 4.

Joshua Da Silva briefly attempted to resuscitate the innings and top-scored with an industrious 65 from 115 balls and partnered with Bryan Charles (25) to push the score to 128 for 7 before Charles was caught by Rahkeem Cornwall off the bowling of Sheeno Berridge.

Da Silva’s brave resistance ended four overs later when he was caught by Carty off Archibald.  Louis who accounted for four of the five top-order batsmen, ended with figures of 4 for 32, while Archibald finished with figures of 4 for 27. 

Batting again for the Leewards Montcin Hodge (5) and Powell (15) were the not-out batsman at the end of day 2.

 

A solid century from left-handed opening batsman, Kieran Powell, anchored a solid opening day for the Leeward Island’s Hurricanes who posted 308 – 7 against Trinidad and Tobago Red Force in the West Indies Championships.

After winning the toss and choosing to bat, the Leewards suffered an early setback after losing Montcin Hodge in the second over of the match.   Hodge was caught by Bryan Charles off the bowling of Jadon Seales.  Powell, however, immediately set about repairing the damage after forming a 64-run partnership with Kacey Carty.

Carty’s dismissal left the Hurricanes at 66 for 2 but Powell feature in another pair of crucial partnerships.  First with Devon Thomas, who made 12 before being bowled by Akeal Hosein, then Amir Jangoo with the two putting on a 100-run partnership to bring the score to 198 for 4 when Jangoo was sent back to the pavilion by Jason Mohammed soon after making his half-century.  Powell’s brilliant resistance was brought to an end when he was trapped lbw by Yannic Cariah, having totalled 139 or 211 deliveries.

Terrance Ward added a patient 26 from 101 balls before being caught by Gabriel off Seales, while Cornwall could only add 5 to the tally before himself being dismissed by Gabriel.

Jeremiah Louis (16) and Hayden Walsh (8) ended the day as the not-out batsmen for the Hurricanes.  Seales was the pick of the bowlers for T&T after ending with a best of 2 for 35.

Jamaican goalkeeper Andre Blake continues to be the best paid Caribbean player in the United States Major League Soccer (MLS) according to the 2022 Player Salary Guide.

The 31-year-old shot-stopper, who has twice been named Goalkeeper of the Year, remains the main man in between the sticks for the Philadelphia Union where he has been since 2014.  For his match-saving performances, Blake earns a base salary of $750,000.00 with guaranteed compensation of $869,375.00.

Talented Trinidad and Tobago midfielder Kevin Molino is next up.  Having completed a move to Columbus Crew last season Molino is listed at $700,348.00 and guaranteed the full amount.  Unfortunately, the player remains out of action having suffered a serious knee ligament in August of last year.

His international teammate Joevin Jones was also on the move last year and having been signed by new club Inter Miami earns $360,000.00 with guaranteed compensation of $458,100.00. 
Jamaica defender Kemar Lawrence is next on the list.  Having recently been traded to Minnesota United this season Lawrence is set to make $400,000.00 with $482,500.00 guaranteed.

The Jamaican trio of Cory Burke, Damion Lowe, and Alvas Powell round out the list earning 400,000, 268,000, and 167,000 at Philadelphia Union, Inter Miami, and FC Cincinnati.

Former Reggae Girlz coach Vin Blaine has expressed concern that the women’s national program is heavily beholden to an outside benefactor.

Earlier this week, Blaine stepped down from the post after just six months in charge of the national team.  During his tenure at the helm, the coach found himself at loggerheads with members of the national team, 19 of whom had sent and signed a letter to the JFF questioning the coach’s training methods.

Blaine, however, continues to believe the players were influenced by external forces who will continue to hold plenty of sway with both a large swath of the team’s senior players and the federation itself.

“A lot of people might not want me to say it but definitely that’s what it is,” Blaine told the SportMax Zone,  when asked whether he thought the national program was being held, hostage.

“That’s from my perspective and that’s one of the reasons I decided to part ways and let them have the program.  Hopefully, I wish them all the best.  I hold no ill will towards anyone,” he added.

“It’s my country but it’s just that at this moment I have decided that this is what is best for me and the program.”

The JFF will now begin the search for a new head coach, ahead of the World Cup qualifiers in July.

 

 

Departing Jamaica Reggae Girlz coach, Vin Blaine, has insisted the toxic environment surrounding his tenure with the national team had left the situation untenable.

Blaine brought an end to a weeks-long saga yesterday when he announced that he would officially resign as coach of the team, following a dispute with some senior members of the Reggae Girlz.

The players in question wrote a letter of no confidence, to the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF), signed by 19 members, which suggested the coach lacked detailed training sessions, did not provide video analysis, had issues with set pieces, and provided no post-match reviews for player improvement.

 A review of the situation by the JFF technical committee, however, cleared the coach of any wrongdoing and recommended Blaine stay in the post.  From his perspective, however, making that decision would not have been in anyone’s best interest. 

“Based on the situation, if everyone knew the entire process I went through; It was a toxic environment,” Blaine told the SportsMax Zone.

 “Sad to say from day one or two, in the program, you had staff undermining the program, the previous staff.  You had players telling you who should be the equipment person, who should be the fitness coach, those are things that went on,” he added.

“I came out with a smile on my face because it’s not for me to disclose those things in a training camp.  So, I don’t think I could move forward although the federation said they were clearing me for that.  For the program to go forward and for my own peace of mind, I did not need that kind of toxicity.”

West Indies cricketer Chris Gayle and South African batsman AB De Villiers have become the first cricketers to be inducted into the hall of fame of Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The 42-year-old Gayle represented the franchise between 2011 and 2017.  The batsman never won a title at the club but set a number of records while there, including the highest ever individual T20 score of 175 during the 2013 IPL season. 

Former RCB skipper Virat Kohli thanked the two greats for their contribution to making the IPL what it is today. Gayle thanked the club for the special honour.  

"I want to thank the RCB family for the opportunity, for everything. It's been special to me as well. And to be inducted is something fantastic, and I will always keep RCB close to my heart. I share a lot of memories with some special players and some special coaches,” Gayle said.

“It's been fantastic. I wish I were there to give this speech, look into you guys' eyes, and tell you exactly how I feel. AB mentioned it's going to be emotional because it's very touching for such a franchise that has been created over the years. It's fantastic. And to Virat, thank you for the kind words as well. Fantastic sharing the dressing room with you guys as well."

 

Jamaica Scorpions coach Andre Coley would like to see batsmen taking more responsibility at the crease, and place more emphasis on batting time, as the West Indies Championship resumes next week.

With two rounds already in the books for the shortened season, the Scorpions will have plenty of work to obtain a satisfactory finish.   On the back of some lukewarm performances, the Jamaica franchise finds itself at the foot of the six-team standings having earned just 8.8 points they have so far.

In that regard, the team has added two batsmen, in West Indies batsman Brandon King and wicketkeeper Aldane Thomas who it is hoped will provide the team with added impetus heading into next Wednesday’s fixtures against the Windward Islands in Trinidad & Tobago.  Coley, however, also believes a change of attitude will be needed to turn things around.

“We are not just looking or starts but to transfer and to translate that into bigger scores, into bigger team partnerships and actually spending time (at the crease),” Coley told members of the media on Friday.

“We are a team that if you look at our record or even the first two games, our run rate has always been healthy.  We just now have to bat time and accept personal responsibility, from a batting standpoint and build more significant partnerships.”

 

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