Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre is the Managing Editor at SportsMax.tv. He comes to the role with almost 20 years of experience as journalist. That experience includes all facets of media. He began as a sports Journalist in 2001, quickly moving into radio, where he was an editor before becoming a news editor and then an entertainment editor with one of the biggest media houses in the Caribbean.

In a race where the winner broke her own world record, Jamaica’s Rushell Clayton ran faster than she ever has before to continue her country’s rich history in the 400-metre hurdles at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics in Doha, Qatar.

A silver-medal winning throw already in the bag, Danniel Thomas-Dodd hit close to 20 metres with her penultimate throw in the shot put final at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics in Doha, Qatar on Thursday, but the dreaded red flag meant she would remain as she stood.

There was another close call on her final throw but that too was not good enough. That may have been enough to disappoint Thomas-Dodd who has big ambitions for her chosen field of endeavour, but in retrospect, she is rather, thankful.  

“This has been the longest season yet, so many ups and downs But there was a lot of success. I have to give thanks for all that I was able to accomplish this season. I am so proud of myself and how far I've come in this sports. Little country girl making her mark on the world,” Thomas-Dodd wrote on Instagram.

Thomas-Dodd, apart from being thankful for her achievements, is also grateful to those who fueled those achievements.

“I am so grateful for all the people who believe in me and my talent and those who doubt/doubted me, thank you as well for being the fuel to the fire in me that burns hungrily. THANK YOU everyone for the kind words and congratulations,” she wrote.

The thanks would continue, no sign of disappointment in sight for the dimunitive shot putter.

“Thanks to my mom Tracey Bendeson, she remains supportive, thanks to my Auntie Natasha Bendeson for the support as well. Thanks to Marlon Gayle for always being there for me when I am at my lowest points. Last but not least I want to thank my Husband Shane Dodd for being the support I NEED. Even when you aren't 100% you make sure I come first so I can stay on track to achieve my goals. Thank you.❤ #adidas #adidasthrowing #adidaswomen #timingiseverything #2020olympics #japanolympics #teamjamaica,” she wrote.

Thomas-Dodd adds the silver medal she earned from a throw of 19.47 metres behind the 19.55 of China’s Lijiao Gong, to a silver at the World Indoor Championships last year where she threw 19.22, the Pan-American Games gold she won in August with a throw of 19.55, and the Commonwealth Games gold she mined in 2018 with a throw of 19.36 metres.

There will be no Caribbean man throwing the shot put in the final of the event at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics in Doha, Qatar after the region’s only hope in O’Dayne Richards had an underwhelming performance on Thursday.

Jamaica’s Shanieka Ricketts continued to show herself to be consistently at the top of her game after she took just one jump to leap well past automatic qualification in the triple jump at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics on Thursday.

Barbados Tridents kept their hopes of a top-two 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) finish alive with a seven-wicket victory over their rivals and defending champions Trinbago Knight Riders.

Having restricted TKR to just 134/8, the Tridents got home on the back of Johnson Charles’ 47-ball 55 to leapfrog their opponents and St Kitts & Nevis Patriots in the Hero CPL table.

The Knight Riders, without a win in their last five after starting the season with four straight victories, now need to beat the runaway leaders Guyana Amazon Warriors in the final match of the league phase at Providence Stadium on Friday night to edge back above the Tridents and reclaim second place.

While both teams are safely through to the playoffs, second place is still a big prize. It brings a place in Qualifier 1 against the Warriors and two shots at a place in next weekend’s final. The team that misses out faces going straight to the Eliminator against the Patriots and no second chances.

Alex Hales showed some glimpses of his best form in a 54-run opening partnership with Charles, hitting six crisp fours and making 33 to get the Tridents well ahead of the required rate early. While the run-rate slowed after the Tridents had raced to 31/0 after the first three overs and though the chase going right into the final over might not have been exactly the plan, JP Duminy and Ashley Nurse held their nerve to collect the seven runs they needed from Kieron Pollard’s closing over without much alarm.

With wickets in hand, the Tridents always seemed to be in control of a relatively small chase. Although Hales chipped Mark Deyal to cover and Shakib Al Hasan was caught behind, the required rate was always in hand. By the time Chris Jordan yorked Charles for 55, the target was just 25 from 25 balls. Nurse and Duminy used 23 of those balls but got the job done.

The Tridents’ star bowlers Shakib Al Hasan, Harry Gurney and Hayden Walsh Jr were all once again impressive as the Knight Riders were restricted on a sluggish pitch.

Shakib bowled the opening over and ensured the Knight Riders’ experiment of sending in Jimmy Neesham as a pinch-hitting opener would not pay off. He made just a single before skying a slog-sweep to be caught and bowled.

Walsh Jr struck twice in quick succession to bag the key wickets of Colin Munro and Darren Bravo before Shakib returned to clean up Lendl Simmons, the mainstay of the TKR innings and the one TKR batsman to really come to grips with the pitch. He made 60 from 45 with three fours and four sixes with none of his team-mates able to pass 23.

Then it was over to Gurney, whose subtle changes of pace and control of line made him close to unhittable. He didn’t concede a single boundary in his four overs despite bowling both in the powerplay and then at the death. The Knight Riders scrambled just 14 runs from his four overs and lost Kieron Pollard to a slower ball and Denesh Ramdin lbw in the process.

Walsh Jr added a direct hit run out to his night’s work as Javon Searles fell for a duck, while Raymon Reifer got in the wickets column thanks to one of the stranger catches of the season as Duminy misjudged a Deyal hoik as it swirled high in the air and fumbled the catch only for Jonathan Carter to grab the rebound.

Jamaica’s Rushell Clayton was impressive enough in her 400-metre hurdles semi-final at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics in Doha, Qatar to make the two most dominant women in the world this year, stop and take note.

It was a good day for Caribbean 400-metre running at the 116th IAAF World Championships of Athletics in Doha, Qatar on Wednesday, with entrants from the Bahamas, Grenada, Trinidad & Tobago, and Jamaica all making it through to the event's final on Friday.

There was a nervous look on Omar McLeod when he lined up in the 110-metre hurdles at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics on Monday and maybe there were even some nerves over the first few hurdles.

Those out of the way, the defending champion literally flew down the straight away to clock a nippy 13.17 seconds.

So quick was McLeod’s heat that the former World number-one pulled two fastest losers from his heat.

Cyprus’ Milan Trajkovic was second in a season’s best 13.37, while South Africa’s Antonio Alkana was third in 13.41 seconds. Fourth was the United States’ Devon Allen (13.46).

Italy’s Hassane Fofana, 13.49, was fifth, while in sixth, Australia’s Nicholas Hough stopped the clock at 13.60. Both were non-automatic qualifiers.

One of the event’s favourites, Sergey Shubenkov, looked in good form, cruising to 13.27 to win his heat ahead of Wenjun Xie of China, 13.38, and Jason Joseph of Switzerland, 13.39. Joseph’s time was a new national record.

Barbados Shane Brathwaite, a former World Champion, is not in the same type of form this season but he is through to the next round after his fourth place finish in 13.51.

Jamaica’s Andrew Riley, 13.67, finished third in his heat to qualify for the semi-final. The heat was won by Pascal Martinot-Lagarde, 13.45, while Grwat Britain’s Andrew Pozzi was second in 13,53, while Colombia’s Yohan Chaverria, 13.76, was fourth.

Last year’s World U20 silver medalist, Jamaica’s Orlando Bennett, was well beaten, finishing fifth in his heat but his 13.50-second clocking meant he was fast enough to finish in one of the non-automatic qualification spots.

Another qualifier from Jamaica, who now have a growing reputation for producing sprint hurdlers, came from Ronald Levy, who finished second in the final heat, running 13.48 to be well beaten by pre-race favourite, Spain’s Orlando Ortega.

There was no drama in the women’s 400-metre heats at the IAAF as favourite, the Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller-Uibo, trotted through the first round of heats to make the semi-final, while Jamaica’s Shericka Jackson and Stephenie-Ann McPherson did just enough.

Sada Williams of Barbados, running in the first heat of the 400s this morning was second in a pedantic 52.14 seconds but was certain of qualification with the first three through as automatic qualifiers.

The United States’ Phyllis Francis won the heat in 50.77 seconds, while the Czech Republic’s Lada Vondrová was the third qualifier in 52.23 seconds.

The United States kept winning heats on Monday, as Wadeline Jonathas, 50.57, won heat 2 ahead of Jackson, 51.13.

Jackson never seemed to push herself very much but did enough to pull a personal best 51.21 from Australia’s Bendere Oboyo.

Sakima Wimbley was another winner for the United States but had to file an appeal to escape a disqualification that, on the face of it, looked pretty harsh.

McPherson clocked 51.21 seconds to finish behind the personal best of Botswana’s Galafele Moroko, 50.59. Guyana’s Aliyah Abrams with 51.73 qualified from a non-automatic spot, finishing fourth in the heat behind Nigeria’s Favour Ofili.

Miller-Uibo has not finished behind anybody this year and she seems keen on keeping things that way, but she still didn’t extend herself very far in stopping clock at 51.30 seconds, to better France’s Déborah Sananes and Kenya’s Mary Moraa.

Miller-Uibo’s major challenge is expected to come from Bahrain’s Salwa Eid Naser, who won heat six on Monday and hardly looked bothered either.

Naser strolled to 50.74 seconds, slower than Miller-Uibo but also well ahead of the field headed by Poland’s Justyna Święty-Ersetic, 51.34, and mexico’s paola morán, 51.58.

Trinidad and Tobago’s Kamaria Durant was the only athlete from the twin-sdland republic to make the semi-finals of the Women’s 200 metres after a day of mixed fortunes for the Caribbean.

In the meantime, Antonique Strachan of the Bahamas qualified for the final, winning Heat one in 22.86 seconds to finish ahead of Durant, 23.08, and Jamaica’s Sashalee Forbes, 23.15.

Jamaica’s biggest hope for a gold medal, 100-metre fourth-place finisher, Elaine Thompson, was not a winner but looked comfortable enough in qualifying second in 22.61 seconds. The United States’ Brittany Brown, with a personal best of 22.33, won the heat.

All eyes though, have been on Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith. Second in the 100 on Sunday, Asher-Smith is a much better 200-metre runner and with a personal best of 21.89, is favourite to take this event.

She looked very good in qualifying, winning her heat in 22.32 seconds, easily outdoing the United States’ Dezerea Bryant, 22.56, and the season’s best 22.57 from the Bahamas’ Tynia Gaither.

Unfortunately for Jamaica, Schillonie Calvert-Powell, running in heat six, found the going too tough and faded to 23.52 and seventh place.

Also out from the Caribbean is T&T’s Mauricia Prieto, who finished sixth in heat 2 with a time of 23.33 seconds.

Naparima College still hold a one-point lead at the top of the Secondary Schools Football League (SSFL) Premier Division but it is tenuous after Saturday’s round of games saw them give up two valuable points, putting St Anthony’s and Presentation College within striking distance.

Presentation College were the team this week on a bye, but they are just two points behind Naparima College with a game in hand. St Anthony’s College were comfortable winners against Trinity College Moka, the 3-1 result putting them just a point behind Naparima. They too have a game in hand, meaning Naparima could find themselves slipping to third if the chasing teams don’t slip.

Playing against Pleasantville Secondary, one would have expected the defending champions to have an easy day, but the game was anything but.

The seventh-place team would end up holding the champions 2-2.

Malick Secondary, who at one stage led the league, are in a stall, failing to win for the third week in a row, again the score 2-1. This time it was Carapichaima East that kept them pointless, helping their free fall in the table. Malick are now ninth, down from the fourth place spot they held last week.

This week it is Carapichaima who hold down the number four spot on the table.

East Mucurapo are fifth on the table after they enjoyed a 2-0 win over St Benedict’s College. The losers of that game now find themselves last on the table with just three points.

If there is a light at the end of the tunnel for St Benedict’s, it is the fact that they are just a point off 12th position on the 15-team tablen with St Augustine, Trinity College Moka and St Mary’s College all on four points.

Speyside Secondary are on the move, climbing to seven points and eighth place after a 2-1 win away at Trinity College East, while San Juan North Secondary visited Queen’s Royal College (QRC) where they pulled off a 4-0 mauling.

San Juan are up to sixth on the table, while QRC are 10th.

St Mary’s College seem to have stopped the bleeding, at least for now, earning their second points of the campaign after a 1-1 draw with St Augustine.

The two lie 12th and 13th respectively.

Pos

Team

P

W

D

L

F

A

+-

Pts

1

Naparima College

6

4

2

0

15

7

8

14

2

St Anthony's College

5

4

1

0

16

4

12

13

3

Presentation College

5

4

0

1

17

2

15

12

4

Carapichaima East Secondary

5

3

2

0

8

5

3

11

5

East Mucurapo Secondary

5

2

2

1

11

6

5

8

6

San Juan North Secondary

5

2

1

2

11

4

7

7

7

Pleasantville Secondary

6

2

1

3

8

9

-1

7

8

Speyside Secondary

5

2

1

2

7

16

-9

7

9

Malik Secondary

5

2

0

3

10

7

3

6

10

Queen's Royal College

5

2

0

3

8

15

-7

6

11

Trinity College East

5

1

2

2

6

9

-3

5

12

St Augustine Secondary

6

0

4

2

9

12

-3

4

13

St Mary's College

6

1

1

4

5

14

-9

4

14

Trinity College Moka

6

1

1

4

6

19

-13

4

15

St Benedict's College

5

1

0

4

5

13

-8

3

St Kitts & Nevis Patriots secured their 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) playoff spot in dramatic style as Dominic Drakes bowled Harry Gurney with the final ball of the night to seal a thrilling one-run victory over Barbados Tridents, who now face a winner-takes-all clash with St Lucia Zouks on Sunday after a dramatic batting collapse when victory appeared in their grasp. 

Tajay Gayle’s gold medal for Jamaica in the long jump at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics in Doha, Qatar was a surprise to everyone – except for Tajay Gayle.

Gayle knew he had big jumps in him even as he just barely made it into Saturday’s long jump final, registering 7.89 to be the last competitor to book a place.

He knew what he had to do, run faster.

On Friday during the qualification round, there was much more swirling through the 23-year-old’s head. He was overthinking. Gayle was worried about getting the mechanics right after he took off toward the pit, making sure he extended right, lent away at the right time, got the most out of his run up. But that was dragging the cart before the horse, it did not work.

“Yesterday I made a small mistake and I worried about the jump,” the history-making Jamaican told a press conference after he claimed gold on Saturday.

But Saturday was different, on Saturday, he focused on the horse.

“Today I was focused on only one thing. That was the run-up and it was working perfectly,” he said.

Gayle would put the field under pressure with his first jump, the Jamaican reaching out to 8.46 metres, a big improvement on his 8.32 personal best.

The field would never get there, but Gayle, who had two fouls after that, was not done yet.

He would reach out towards the pit on his fourth jump and find he had gone even farther, farther than anyone in that field had ever gone.

“I’m not sure what happened, but in any case, I’m very grateful. I just was faster doing my run-up,” he said simply, as if running faster could explain the heady heights he was able to reach.

But the achievement has not been lost on the young man.

“I got here, did a personal best and a Worlds’ gold” he said, indicating that his World Championships experience could not have gone any better.

“I would have loved to put a personal best under my first victory at the World Championships.”

Gayle bested a crack field, including Miguel Echevarria of Cuba, who achieved some big wind-aided results this year and should have been a shoe-in for gold. He also dethroned Luvo Mayonga of South Africa, all while jumping to a distance they had never legally done.

But to do that, Gayle had to forget his competitors, their accolades and previous achievements, and focus on being the best Tajay Gayle he could.

“I have never worried about anything else, but myself,” he said, again, simply.

Jamaica’s Natoya Goule, who has a big chance at an IAAF World Championships of Athletics medal this year, had a few anxious moments on Saturday, as a bump from Uganda’s Halimah Nakaayi threatened to keep her out of Monday’s final.

Goule, looking comfortable for the first 600 metres, rounded Nakaayi, Kenya’s Jepkoech Sum and had been taking aim at the United States’ Ce'Aira Brown when she was bumped by the Ugandan, who wanted to make a hole after being boxed in.

Nakaayi had earlier interfered with Brown as well, trying to pass her on the inside of lane one but found no way through.

Her frustration boiled over and she lashed out at the surging Goule at the top of the final corner. Goule lost her rhythm and was not able to cash in on the momentum she had built from 150 metres out, but she did manage to stay with the leaders to finish fourth in the race in a time of 2:00.33 seconds. That time was quick enough to earn her a place in the final as one of the fastest non-automatic qualifiers.

Nakaayi leads all qualifiers with her season’s best 1:59.35, while the United States’ Ajee Wilson, 2:00.31 was comfortably through, in her heat, as was her teammate Raevyn Rogers, 1:59.57.

Kyron McMaster almost failed to put his talent on full display on the world stage for the second major meet in a row after he was disqualified from the 400 metre hurdles in Doha, Qatar for a hurdles infringement, only to be re-instated later.

McMaster, one of the five or six best 400 hurdlers in the world at this point, seemed to want to make a statement in his semi-final heat on Saturday and stormed out of the blocks so quickly he slammed into the first hurdle and almost did not recover.

The US Virgin Islands athlete still managed to finish third in the heat, clocking 48.40 behind the fast finishing Brazillian Alison Dos Santos, 48.35, and Turkey’s Yasmani Copello, 48.39.

McMaster had initially been labelled with a disqualification but successfully appealed the decision.

In a previous World Championships, McMaster, then the quickest in the world with some mid-47-second runs, failed to negotiate a hurdle properly and was deemed to have breeched the same rule. On that occasion there was to be no reversal.

In the meantime, McMaster’s rivals over the distance have all made it to the final.

Karsten Warholm, the man who has gone fastest this year and is the second fastest 400 hurdler in history won his heat comfortably in 48.28, while Rai Benjamin showed he was in better shape than Abderrahman Samba, beating the former world number one to the line in 48.52. Samba would stop the clock at 48.72.

The other man from the Caribbean in the event, Jamaica’s Kemar Mowatt, struggled in the semi-final, finishing seventh in 49.32 to bring an unwelcome end to his World Championships experience.

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