An unbeaten century from middle-order batsman Kyle Mayers put the West Indies in pole position against Bangladesh on day two of the second Test at the Darren Sammy Stadium in St Lucia.

At the close of play, having overhauled Bangladesh the West Indies were 340 for 5 and had a lead of 106 runs.  The team’s strong position was in large part due to the work of Mayers who put together a dominant 126 from 180 deliveries,  providing the base of the West Indies' response to the Bangladesh first innings total of 234.

 The batsman came to the crease just before lunch with the team struggling at 132 for four and immediately went to work by putting on a big partnership with Jermaine Blackwood.

The duo steadied a shaky situation with a 116-run fifth-wicket stand after the team had fallen to 137 for 4.  Blackwood was dismissed just after tea, by spinner Mehidy Hasan, having added 40 to the tally.

Mayers, who scored 210 on debut against the same opponents last year, pressed on and helped himself to 15 fours and two sixes.  Wicketkeeper-batsman Joshua Da Silva joined him at the crease to add 26, and 92 for the sixth wicket, before the close of play.

Earlier, having resumed the day at 67 without loss, West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite and John Campbell pushed the score to 100 without loss.  The partnership was finally broken when pacer Shoriful Islam produced some extra bounce to Campbell who was then gobbled up by the wicketkeeper, on 45.

Brathwaite was next to follow and was bowled after being deceived by a flighted delivery from Mehidy, shortly after reaching a half-century.  The struggles of Raymond Reifer in the number three spot continued.  He never looked really comfortable before being dismissed by Khaled Ahmed after getting to 22.  Up next, Nkrumah Bonner, who also had success against Bangladesh last year, continued to struggle through a rough patch as he was dismissed for his second duck of the series.

 

 

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Elaine Thompson-Herah and Shericka Jackson all safely advanced to Sunday’s Women’s 200m final as action continued on day three of the 2022 Jamaican National Senior Athletics Championships at the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday.

The three 100m medalists from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics all looked extremely easy to win their semi-finals in 22.54, 22.68 and 22.85, respectively.

Jackson, who secured the 100m title on Friday, looked especially easy, completely shutting down in the last 100m of the race.

Natalliah Whyte (23.05), Ashanti Moore (23.21), Kevona Davis (23.33), Jodean Williams (23.21) and Dominique Clarke (23.29) will join them in the final.

Meanwhile, 100m Champion Yohan Blake led all qualifiers to the Men’s final with a season’s best 20.20 to win his semi-final ahead of Andrew Hudson (20.23).

2020 Olympic finalist Rasheed Dwyer will also contest Sunday’s final after producing 20.35 to win his semi-final ahead of Nigel Ellis (20.45).

Mario Heslop (20.52), Riquan Graham (20.66), Jazeel Murphy (20.67) and Antonio Watson (20.74) complete the line-up for the final.

NCAA Championships silver medalist Charokee Young (50.19), 2020 Olympic finalist Candice McLeod (50.85), Stacey-Ann Williams (50.87) and 2013 World Championship bronze medalist Stephenie Ann McPherson (50.67) led all qualifiers to the Women’s 400m final.

The men were led by Jevaughn Powell (45.38), Anthony Cox (45.43), Nathon Allen (45.52) and Akeem Bloomfield (45.59).

The qualifiers for the Women’s sprint hurdles final were led by Britany Anderson (12.45), Megan Tapper (12.61), 2015 World Champion Danielle Williams (12.59) and Demisha Roswell (12.84).

Reigning Olympic Champion Hansle Parchment (13.24), Orlando Bennett (13.27), Rasheed Broadbell (13.29) and 2016 Olympic and 2017 World Champion Omar McLeod (13.36) led the qualifiers to the Men’s 110m hurdles final.

In the field, 2019 World Championship silver medalist Danniel Thomas-Dodd threw 18.79m to win her seventh national title ahead of Lloydricia Cameron (16.96m) and Danielle Sloley (15.98m).

Wayne Pinnock added to his NCAA Indoor and Outdoor titles earlier this season with a personal best 8.14m to win the Men’s long jump ahead of defending World Champion Tajay Gayle (7.97m) and Shawn-D Thompson (7.88m).

 

 

Andrenette Knight went into Jamaica’s National Senior Athletics Championships on Thursday as the fastest Jamaican woman in the world over the 400m hurdles this year.

Newly crowned Jamaican national 100m Champion Yohan Blake expects Jamaica to be back in contention for gold in the Men’s 4x100m at the World Championships in Eugene to be held from July 15-24.

“The 4x100 is looking great,” he said in an interview after running 9.85, his fastest time in a decade, to claim the national title ahead of Oblique Seville (9.88) and Ackeem Blake (9.93).

“Our sprinting is up there again and we’re looking to challenge the world again,” Blake added.

The retirement of Usain Bolt after the 2017 London World Championships signaled a shift in the balance of the Men’s 4x100m relay at major championships.

Jamaica’s men won the 4x100m gold at three straight Olympics (2008-2016) and four straight World Championships (2009-2015).

The 2017 and 2019 World Championships and the 2020 Olympics all saw Jamaica fail to medal in the event but with Blake returning to his best and the rise of youngsters Seville and Blake, the sixth and eleventh fastest men in the world this year, the 2011 World 100m Champion expects things to go back to normal in Eugene.

Jelani Walker (10.00), 2014 Commonwealth Games 100m Champion Kemar Bailey-Cole (10.10), and Conroy Jones (10.10) finished fourth, fifth and sixth in the final and are expected to round out the relay pool.

Cricket West Indies (CWI) has announced that Hayley Matthews has been appointed as the West Indies Women’s Captain.

Matthews, who is one of the leading all-rounders in world cricket, will assume the leadership role from Stafanie Taylor ahead of the next West Indies Women’s Series, expected to be played later this year.

Taylor, the most successful female player in West Indies history and ranked among the all-time greats, has led the team for over seven years since 2015. She was at the helm when West Indies won the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in 2016 and earlier this year when they reached the semi-finals of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup in New Zealand.

CWI Women’s Selection Panel recommendation was ratified at the CWI Board of Directors meeting on Thursday, 24 June.

“The selection panel has done a review of the team including the leadership. After this review the panel took the decision to recommend that Hayley Matthews takes over the role as captain,” said Lead Selector for Women’s cricket Ann Browne-John, who thanked Stafanie for her years in the role.

“Hayley has made notable progress over the years, serving as vice-captain of the West Indies Women’s Team and is the current Captain of her National Team, Barbados. She has matured as a player and is one of the leading players worldwide with a good grasp of the game. Given the experience that she would have gained in both roles, we are confident this is the ideal time for her to step into the role of captain.

“We recognize that leading the team for seven years is a considerable achievement to which Stafanie has given huge levels of commitment and energy. We believe Stafanie is a world-class performer who will no doubt continue to add tremendous value to the team as one of the top all-rounders in the game.”

West Indies Women Head Coach Courtney Walsh endorsed the change in leadership.

“The selection panel felt that it was time to make the change. We figured the timing was right with the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup coming up early next year, if we were thinking of making any changes now would be the best time so that we give the new captain a couple of series under her belt before she enters into a World Cup,” Walsh said.

“Hayley Matthews is young, she has longevity in the game, and she can lead the team for a longer time to get the experience and we are here to support her. For us it’s a win-win as we will have Stafanie to concentrate on her best cricket and passing on guidance to Hayley as she grows in the role of taking the team forward.”

Hayley Matthews expressed her pride and gratitude in the appointment.

“I am both humbled and honored to be given the opportunity to Captain the West Indies Women’s Team. It is definitely an exhilarating feeling and I welcome the experience to lead and learn with open arms,” she said.

“This team has been very close to my heart from the beginning of my professional career eight years ago and the influence of Stafanie’s leadership throughout those eight years has played a major role in the player I am today. I eagerly anticipate working with the players to continue building on the progress in which the team has made thus far.

“I would like to thank Stafanie for her astounding leadership of the team over the years. We’ve accomplished some of our biggest milestones with her at the forefront and I look forward to continuing playing alongside her.”

Matthews and Taylor have both been among the best players for West Indies. In her career, Taylor has scored 5,298 runs in 145 One-Day Internationals and 3,121 runs in 111 T20 Internationals. She has also taken 152 wickets in ODIs and 98 in T20Is. Matthews, like Taylor is a right-handed top-order batter and off-break bowler. She has an impressive international record with 1,764 runs and 78 wickets in 69 ODIs, and 1,055 runs and 58 wickets in 61 T20Is.

Janieve Russell entered this season short on confidence. Years of injury resulted in disappointing performances that saw her missing out on individual representation for the last seven years. That all changed on Friday night when she won the national title in the Women’s 400m hurdles at Jamaica’s National Senior Athletics Championships in Kingston.

Trailing Andrenette Knight, who is the fastest Jamaican woman in the world this year, with less than 100m to go, the 28-year-old Russell seized on the moment after Knight hit the ninth hurdle and fell. Russell stormed through to pass Shian Salmon and win in her fourth national title in a season-best 53.63. She said afterwards it was good to be back on top once more.

“It is really refreshing and it shows that you should never give up,” she said.

“Of course, I had some doubts coming into the season. I am saying to myself since 2015 I haven’t made a world championships team in an individual event I was a bit worried but I put in the work. I am confident and I am a lot stronger than last year and faster.

“I just went out there and execute and the execution wasn’t as perfect as my coach wanted it to but I was glad I was in the top three.”

The 2018 Commonwealth Games 400m hurdles champion said winning has boosted her confidence, especially in light of the fact that her injury issues are seemingly behind her.

“It has given me a lot of confidence,” she said of the victory.

“This is the first season I can remember that I haven’t had any major injuries. I did start the season with some little niggles but nothing that kept me out of training so I feel really good; words can’t explain but for the World Championships I am just going out there to represent.”

There is still work to be done if she is to improve over the next three weeks before the championships begin in Oregon on July 15.

“I believe I am really ready. When I go back to training we will look back at the video to see where I went wrong and see what I need to strengthen and what I need to change. I know there is a lot to change,” she said.

 

Gareth Bale is signing for Los Angeles FC, according to a report in the United States.

MLSsoccer.com, the official website of MLS, claims the winger will join LAFC on a one-year contract using targeted allocation money.

That deal would expire next June, midway through the 2023 season.

Bale's Real Madrid contract expires this month, and he has been looking for a new club after guiding Wales to qualification for the 2022 World Cup.

The five-time Champions League winner has been widely linked with Cardiff City but instead appears set on a move Stateside.

Wales face the USMNT in their first group-stage match in Qatar.

Before then, Bale's signing would boost an LAFC team who already lead the Supporters' Shield race and have also secured Giorgio Chiellini ahead of the transfer window in MLS opening next month.

LAFC's first match after that date is El Trafico against rivals the LA Galaxy.

Natoya Goule is hopes to run a fast time when she takes to the track for the 800m final at Jamaica’s national senior championships at the National Stadium in Kingston on Sunday. However, she expects to unleash her best time for the World Championships in Eugene, Oregon next month.

The 31-year-old Goule, a finalist at the Tokyo Olympics in Japan in 2021, holds her country’s national record of 1:56.15 but has run a best time this season of 1:59.31 in Oslo on June 16. But even though she doesn’t expect to be challenged as she goes for a ninth consecutive title on Sunday, she expects to perform well.

“Now is a good time to target a time in a race like this where you control the race,” she said, “because sometimes you are in other races and you are not able to control the race like you want to so if I want to run a time I need to just go and do it.”

The national record holder also revealed that she has been working on a new race strategy that will result in her finishing on the podium in Oregon in July. In some races this season, she has run from the front while in others she has tried to run on from behind. So far this season, that has been a work in progress, she said.

“Well, in some of the races it was but for one particular race, it was not planned. It just happened. I think it was Rome, it was not planned. There was a lot going on at that time but it showed me I can still run from the back even though I wasn’t able to go as fast as I wanted at that time, it still showed that I can run from anywhere and I was able to dip under two minutes so that showed something but I was really trying to work on different strategies throughout the season in some races,” she explained.

“I just have to be ready on that day, be super fit and be able to execute my race properly and make sure I don’t overdo it and then I will be able to run faster.”

That said, she was non-committal about whether Jamaica would see elements of that developing strategy come Sunday but believes her best time is yet to come this season.

“My coach and I haven’t really spoken about my race plan as yet but we definitely want to run a good time so I think I will probably have to take it out,” she said.

“I am in the shape for that but let’s see what will happen because it is not easy running that by yourself. I think it is going to come between now and worlds because when I ran my PR it was in July. I always run my fastest in July so for me, July is the time.”

The 2022 World Championships begin on July 15.

 

Execution was key to Kemba Nelson running a new lifetime best to qualify for her first ever World Championships at Jamaica’s National Senior Championships in Kingston on Friday night.

Nelson, a senior at the University of Oregon, ran a personal best of 10.88 to finish second to Shericka Jackson, who ran a season-best 10.77 to secure her first national 100m title. Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah was third in 10.89 while Briana Williams ran a new lifetime best of 10.94 for fourth.

The key, she said, was to execute her race plan. “Once I execute the time will come,” she said.

Nelson, who won the silver medal behind Julien Alfred at the NCAA Division I Championships in Oregon earlier this month, explained that the more than 25-minute delay at the start did affect her but she was able to regain her composure ahead of the eventual start and that also paid off for her. She credits the advice of Coach Robert Johnson at Oregon for helping in that regard.

“Coach Johnson has always said to be things don’t only affect me, it affects all seven other athletes. It’s just for me to regroup because it’s bad for everybody but don’t let bad stop me from what I came here to do.”

Naturally, Nelson was ecstatic afterwards, sharing hugs first with Jackson and then family and friends afterwards in celebration of the achievement of making her first World Championships team.

“It means a lot to me. Coach has always believed in me, knows that I could do it, a little girl from Mobay living her dream,” she said, indicating that her decision to leave the University of Technology and enrol at the University of Oregon has been a key factor in her development.

“One of the best decisions I ever made in my life,” she said.

 

 

 

Newly minted women’s 100m champion, Shericka Jackson, believes something special could be in store as she gets ready to tackle double the distance at the ongoing Jamaica National Championships.  

The Tokyo Olympics 100m bronze medallist looked in superb form as she ran away from reigning Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah to claim the event in 10.77.  The win was the first for the talented all-around sprinter having previously claimed two 400m titles and one over 200m.

Despite being thrilled with the result the athlete was quick to admit that she was not entirely satisfied and looking for a faster time.  Jackson finished one-hundredth of a second outside her personal best.

“I’m feeling good but I’m actually a little disappointed with the time, knowing where I am at in training, but I will take it for now,” the sprinter said after the race.

With the women’s 200m set to run off on Saturday, however, Jackson has another opportunity to show just how far she has progressed, and she intends to take it.

“Something special will be in store for that event,” Jackson added.

The athlete has been one of the event's standout performers this season and clocked the third-fastest time over the distance this year with a 21.91 showing in Rome.

While pleased with her three consecutive sub-11 times including a new personal best in the 100m at Jamaica’s National Senior Championships, Olympic gold medallist Briana Williams was ‘annoyed’ by a 25-minute delay at the start of the 100m final which she believed had an effect on her performance.

Williams ran a new lifetime best of 10.94 to finish fourth just missing out on individual representation at the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Oregon in mid-July. In the race where the start was delayed by more than five minutes because of technical challenges being experienced by the starters, Shericka Jackson won her first national 100m title clocking a fast 10.77 while Kemba Nelson finished second in a new lifetime best of 10.88.

Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah was third in 10.89, just ahead of the 20-year-old Williams.

“I had a new PB, I am grateful. I had a great start. My end was pretty bad but it was a great race nonetheless,” Williams said afterwards, indicating that the delay had a major impact.
“A lot, it was very irritating.”

She revealed that she is also thankful to be able to perform as well as she did, given some challenges that she has had to face so far this season.

“This year hasn’t been the best. Indoors went pretty well but I am still going on with my season,” she said as she looks forward to donning the gold, black and green in Oregon as a member of Jamaica’s relay squad next month.

Tokyo Olympics triple gold medalist Elaine Thompson-Herah said she momentarily considered walking away from the final of the 100m final at Jamaica’s national championships in Kingston on Friday night after technical glitches delayed the start for more than 25 minutes.

Newly crowned Jamaica national 100m champion Yohan Blake believes his return to the top of the local track and field podium is a lesson in perseverance.

On Friday, the 32-year-old announced his return to top form in grand fashion after stopping the clock at 9.86 seconds, finishing ahead of a field of mostly younger challengers.  The title was the athlete’s fifth overall but first since 2019.

More impressively, however, the time was the athlete’s fastest since 2012, a year when he ran a blistering 9.69 and the 9.76 to put him in the same conversations as legendary compatriot Usain Bolt.

 A devastating injury a year later, however, significantly derailed Blake’s career.  After failing to medal at any major Games since then and missing out on the final at last year’s Olympic Games, many doubted Blake could ever get back to top form.

“It just goes to show you that you should never give up on yourself,” Blake said following the event.

“Always believe in yourself, trust God, trust your coach and go for it,” he added.

“I’ve been working assiduously all season and it just came together.”

En route to the title, the 32-year-old got the better of 21-year-old Oblique Seville (9.88) and 20-year-old Ackeem Blake third in 9.93.

Young Windies pacers Alzarri Joseph and Jayden Seales took three wickets apiece to reel in a comfortable-looking Bangladesh who seemed set for a big opening day in the second Test, at the Darren Sammy Ground in St Lucia.

Batting first Bangladesh found themselves in a strong position at 105 for 2 with a solid partnership between Anamul Haque and Najmul Hossain Shanto, who came together following the dismissal of Tamim Iqbal.  After looking set at the crease, Iqbal was dismissed by Joseph on 44.

 After briefly steading the innings the duo departed in quick succession, Haque was sent back for 23 by Phillip while Kyle Mayers dismissed Shanto Lbw for 26.  Shakib Al Hasan was then bowled by Jayden Seales for 8.

Bangladesh were 159-6 at tea with Liton Das set at the crease, but as soon as he reached 14th Test fifty, he was dismissed by Joseph on 53.

Tailenders Shoriful Islam and Ebadot Hossain pushed the team past 200 but the innings was wrapped up soon after.

At the close of play, West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite and opening partner John Campbell pushed the team to 67 without loss.  Campbell and Brathwaite were untroubled in making 32 and 30 respectively.  

 

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