Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

The eight-time Olympic champion and 11-times world champion Usain Bolt is among nine elite athletes who have partnered with fitness company Peloton for its newly released Champions Collection.

Peloton Interactive, Inc. is an exercise equipment and media company that allows monthly subscribers to remotely participate in classes via streaming media.

Inside Hook reported on Wednesday that Peloton announced the Champions Collection for which it was partnering with the likes of Bolt, tennis star Angelique Kerber, surfer John John Florence, Allyson Felix and Andre De Grasse, Paralympic long jumper Scout Bassett, Olympic gymnasts Becky and Ellie Downie, and former world-record-holding swimmer Kathleen Baker.

According to the online publication, athletes will likely not become formal instructors but will probably have pages built out on the platform, where subscribers can follow along with their favourite workouts or playlists.

 

Double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah, Olympic and World Championships 400m bronze medalist and former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell have been named to a Jamaican selection that has named to participate in the World Relays set for May 1-2 in Chorzow, Poland.

Former West Indies Captain Jason Holder has expressed his delight at being named among Wisden’s Five Cricketers of the Year.

Jamaica’s Isaac Mair has described his B Class victory at the Florida State Championships this past weekend as 'the sweetest' of his wins this year.

Former West Indies captain Sir Clive Lloyd is taking the Guyana Chronicle to court, his lawyer Ralph Thorne confirmed Tuesday night.

Lloyd claims that the newspaper attributed to him, disparaging comments made about all-rounder Jason Holder, himself now a former West Indies captain. However, the man who is also known as the 'Big Cat' insists that he did not speak to the reporter employed by the Guyanese media house.

The offending story published on March 13, was headlined ‘Holder has outlived his usefulness in the position, says Lloyd’ over the byline of Rajiv Bisnauth, who has subsequently been suspended. The newspaper has also apologized for their publication of the story.

However, Thorne revealed on the Mason & Guest talk show in Barbados last night that they were proceeding with legal action against the newspaper.

“I am representing Sir Clive Lloyd in association with Guyanese counsel and if the Chronicle or anybody at the Chronicle is hearing let them understand that we are pressing ahead with the case on behalf of one of the great West Indians of the last 100 years,” Ralph Thorne.

In response to Thorne’s declaration, Editor at the Guyana Chronicle Tajeram Mahabir told Sportsmax.TV that since the story was published online, they had taken several actions that included reaching out to Sir Clive Lloyd with an apology as well as publishing a retraction and apology on the front page of their online publication.

Mr Mahabir also revealed that the newspaper had also reached out to Lloyd’s attorney with an apology, also indicating that the attorney had requested a settlement. He was unable to say whether an agreement was reached on any settlement.

He directed Sportsmax.TV to General Manager Moshamie Ramotar, who was said to be in a meeting when a call was made to her office.

Meanwhile, Mr Mahbir, who said he was disappointed and appalled by the headline and the story saying that had he seen it before it would not have been published. The editor, who described Lloyd as an icon, also said that the newspaper has also engaged the reporting staff in libel training.

On Tuesday night, Thorne said regional newspapers needed to be more responsible with their reporting.

“This region is what it is because we have some people called cricketers. This region derives much of its identity and much of its respect in the international community because of cricket, and therefore because of our cricketers you are not going to meet a more distinguished West Indian than Sir Clive Lloyd,” he said.

“And therefore, newspapers must be very careful how they portray our heroes. Sir Clive Lloyd is a West Indian hero, an authentic West Indian hero and when a reporter is going to say to the world in an online edition that Sir Clive Lloyd spoke to him and he quoted Sir Clive Lloyd as having said that he disavowed Jason Holder.

That is unkind, not only because Sir Clive Lloyd is a West Indian hero speaking about a West Indian captain but Sir Clive Lloyd never said that. These men must not be defamed by newspapers simply because they have the power of the pen.”

Slightly disappointed over her times on the weekend, Kiara Grant believes there is no reason why she should not break 11 seconds this season as she plans to fight through a competitive field to make Jamaica’s team to the Olympics this summer.

Based on how well she has been training, “there is no reason why I shouldn’t break 11 seconds,” she said.

The 20-year-old Grant, a junior at Norfolk State University, ran 11.29 for second place in the 100m and 23.25 to win the 200m at the Gamecock Invitational at Gregger Park on Saturday.

“This was my opener. I could have been better but they’re okay times for an opener,” she said, “so I know what I need to fix in practice. It’s to see how I can lower my times before regionals asap.”

She has about two weeks to those regionals and she believes that is more than enough time to get the required work in. “I have two meets to get those times down. I am a lot stronger and I have been putting the background work, so with the right competition I can get my times down,” she said confidently.

Grant, who has a personal best of 11.04, said she was expecting to run 11.1 or 11.0x on Saturday and around 22.9, said running her intent to go faster is not just for regionals but for the much bigger event this summer.

“That’s the biggest goal right now. I am up for the Olympics. It doesn’t get better than that. That’s why I am working on getting my times down,” she said.

“Sha’ Carri Richardson ran 10.7, we have to do something over these next two weeks. We have to apply some kind of pressure,” she declared.

 

 

Former West Indies batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan has been appointed to lead the senior selection panel of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB). His appointment is one several made at a meeting of the newly elected board on Saturday night.

At the meeting, which was the second held since the March 29 elections, and chaired by President B Bissoondyal Singh, several sub-committees were established for senior selection, junior selection as well as for cricket development, finance and public relations.

Sarwan will head the senior panel while Andre Percival, the most successful youth captain in the West Indies, will head the junior selection panel. Vice President Hilbert Foster will lead cricket development, Claude Raphael, the Public Relations Committee while Acting Treasurer Dr Cecil Beharry, heads up the Finance Committee.

Also arising from the meeting was the GCB decision to make available several positions on the different committees for the Essequibo Cricket Board.

 

Chris Gayle was among the runs as the Punjab Kings defeated the Rajasthan Royals by four runs in a thriller in Mumbai today.

Natalliah Whyte was well pleased with her 100m outing at the Miramar South Florida Invitational on Saturday but she is hoping that she will go much faster as the season progresses. Whyte was third in 11.16 behind runaway winner Sha’ Carri Richardson, who ran a jaw-dropping 10.72s, the fastest time in the world this year.

The 23-year-old Jamaican, who ran the lead-off leg for Jamaica’s gold medal-winning 4x100 relay team at the World Championships in Doha in 2019, had run even faster in the preliminary round clocking 11.07s, her season-best.

However, taking the two races together, Whyte said she was happy with the overall performance.

“The first 100 metres of the season after not competing or doing much due to Covid this time last year, and with a time of 11.07 in the heats and 11.16 in the finals, I am satisfied,” she told Sportsmax.TV following her race.

She explained that the races were meant to provide her and her coach with indicators of what her progress is this season.

“It’s really just taking each race at a time and finding out my weak points and working on those so I can put everything together to get that perfect race,” said Whyte, who trains with Puma MVP International at their base at the Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton.

“I was hoping to go faster in the final run but, as I said, the race wasn’t perfect but there is still room for improvement. It’s the first race of the season and I think everything will come together as I move forward.”

Whyte did not compete indoors during the winter but does not believe it had any impact on her performances outdoors where she has run two 200m races recording times of 22.88 and 23.28 on March 20 and April 4, respectively.

“Not competing indoors doesn’t give you that early push that pushes you into outdoor. So basically, just training doesn’t give you a true benchmark of where you would want to be,” she explained.

“Competing with world-class athletes is what really sets the standard for what to work on and to just see where you are in your progress. So this meet was a great meet. It had a lot of world-class athletes so it was a true test of progress.”

Having run both short sprints so far this season begs the question, does she plan to compete at both at the Olympic this summer should she qualify at her national championships set for June? Whyte said it’s too early to say.

“Both events complement each other so at the moment I am using each event to get better at the other. The 200m really helps with speed endurance but eventually, when it gets closer to that time, my coach and I will decide based on how the season progresses, what will be best,” she said.

“At the moment, I am delighted for the opportunity to compete. I haven’t run the 200 consistently for the past few years so I am just trying to familiarize myself with the event again. So it’s really a learning process as I go along.  I am also trying to stay injury-free, which is my number one goal.”

Commenting on Richardson's phenomenal time, Whyte said: "Richardson's run was spectacular, she’s a very talented athlete."

 

Texas A&M's Tyra Gittens was super excited about her new personal best in the heptathlon this weekend but acknowledged that there is still room for a lot of improvement. This is especially true if he wants to achieve her goal of competing in the multi-event discipline at this summer’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.

The 22-year-old Trinidadian, the 2021 NCAA pentathlon champion competing in her first heptathlon is more than two years scored an NCAA-leading 6274 points after completing the seven events at the Texas A&M Invitational held at Bryan-College Station in Texas on Friday and Saturday.

She won all four disciplines in windy conditions on Friday. She opened up with a time of 13.14 in the 100m hurdles for 1103 points, cleared 1.82m in the high jump, scoring 1003 points and won the shot put with a throw of 12.85m that earned her 717 points. In the final event of the day, she won the 200m sprint in 23.33, scoring 1046 points.

She returned on Saturday morning winning the long jump with a leap of 6.67m that earned her 1062 points. She only managed 631 points for the javelin and then rounded out the competition with a 2:28.52 run in the 800m for 712 points.

“Mood for a huge personal best, new school record, and an NCAA leading 6274 points in my first heptathlon in forever! Still so much to work on and I can’t wait to recover and get back into training” she posted on Instagram afterwards, very much aware of the work that she needs to get done if she is to book a ticket to Tokyo.

The 6247 points she scored is still 173 shy of the Olympic qualifying standard of 6420 points.

 

The youth of the CARIFTA region were treated to an excellent performance by Alex Sobers of Barbados who hit three Tokyo Olympic B times at the ISCA International Senior Cup.

World Championship long jump finalist Chanice Porter jumped a personal best 6.77m to finish third in the long jump at the Spec Town Invitational in Georgia on Friday.

Porter, who had a previous best of 6.75 set in 2018 hit the mark with her first jump which she followed up with 6.60. Her finally jump was a creditable 6.48m.

However, while she opened with a personal best, she was second after the first round as Jasmine Moore got 6.83m on her first jump.

Both women then fell to second and third, respectively as Kendall Williams won the event with her personal best effort of 7.00m.

The 26-year-old Porter needs a mark of 6.82m to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics this summer.

 

Track and field coach and broadcaster Ato Boldon believes the USA’s Sha’ Carri Richardson is now favoured to break Jamaica’s stranglehold on the Olympic 100m title this summer, following her jaw-dropping 100m run at the Miramar South Florida Invitational on Saturday.

World long-jump champion Tahjay Gayle and silver medalist Danielle Thomas-Dodd were the only winners on a day of mixed results for Caribbean athletes at the Miramar South Florida Invitational at the Ansin Sports Complex on Saturday.

Roger Harper, Cricket West Indies’ Chief Selector has expressed concern over the productivity of opening partnerships for the West Indies but laments the fact that no one is really knocking at the door to be selected.

Captain Kraigg Brathwaite has had a welcome return to form with two Test half-centuries and a century in his last four Test matches but fellow opener John Campbell has not been inspiring much confidence with his performances.

The Jamaican has scores of 3, 23, 36, 18, 42, 11, 5, and 10 in his last four Tests. His last half-century, 68, was made in the second Test against New Zealand in December last year.

As a result, solid opening partnerships for the Caribbean side have been rare and this is a worry for Harper.

 “I think it has been a concern for a while. It was pleasing to see the captain get some big scores, but we need the partnership, on the whole, to be solid,” Harper said this past week on Mason and Guest.

But while Campbell has been struggling for form, Harper acknowledges that the batsman has been working hard to correct his flaws, like the ones that saw him get out in similar fashion in all four innings in the recently concluded series against Sri Lanka.

 “We were delighted to see Campbell applying himself and being more patient, but we need some more positive returns,” he said.

There are several players who could come in to bolster the batting but recent history does not offer much hope for success. Players like Shai Hope and Shayne Moseley are potential replacements; Hope especially who has shown a welcome return to form in the ODIs against Sri Lanka, but Test cricket is a different prospect for a player who has struggled in that format of the game.

Moseley, who has shown promise, is yet to demonstrate that he is ready after several failures.

“It is something we are looking at. We are looking at our best options. At the moment, from a red ball perspective, we don’t have enough openers who are knocking down the door in terms of performances,” he concluded.

 

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