Retired Jamaica international Jamal Campbell-Ryce has embarked on a career in coaching with the Colchester United under-23 team.

The 36-year-old winger, who made some 18 appearances for the Jamaica national team, is expected to work with the club’s youth players who he will mentor on a one and one basis.

Jon de Souza the club’s director of performance has tipped the Jamaican to have a positive impact on future generations.

"Jamal will be joining us as an U23s player/coach, working in training with the U18s and U23s, to play in the U23s fixtures and to mentor players on a one to one basis,” he told the club’s official website.

"He was a flair-based forward in his career, and we believe that they are often the type of players who need help within our squad to develop the right application and desire to continue to progress,” he added.

"Through his career, Jamal has learned a lot and knows that, in that position and at that young age, you have to learn to do a lot more off the ball and to apply yourself fully on and off the pitch to end up having a long life in the game.”

Jamaica world and Olympic champion Omar McLeod believes things are getting back to normal, following yet another chance in training regime.

The 25-year-old had trained with Eldrick Floreal up until late 2018 but then moved to Gary Evans at Empire Athletics in Florida.  Tony Ross at World Fastest Humans was his hurdles coach.  The athlete has since struggled, however.  Before claiming the top spot in Birmingham on Sunday, McLeod won only two hurdles races and has a season-best time of 13.12s set at the Diamond League meeting in Shanghai, China.

The athlete is, however, rumored to have joined the Tumbleweed camp of elite coach Rana Reider in Jacksonville, Florida, earlier this month and seems to be in a better frame of mind.  On Sunday, at the Birmingham Diamond League meet, McLeod clocked 13.21, well clear of the United States’ Freddie Crittenden (13.31) and Xie Wenjun (13.43).  Following the win, the athlete admitted, the target was getting in shape for the World Championships.

“It was pretty easy and felt good. It was nice to make up for what happened in London. I'm in a new environment with a new coach and I feel like I'm ready to go again,” McLeod said.


“For Doha, I need to go there in the best possible shape and not been half-bothered about it. Anything can happen and I need to go there as defending champion and be ready to compete,” he added.
“I have the Diamond League finals prior to Doha so I need to be ready for that.”

Jamaica 100m hurdler Danielle Williams continued her run of red-hot form after destroying the field to claim the women’s 100m title at the Birmingham Diamond League meet on Sunday.

In fact, the impressive Williams equaled the meeting record after stopping the clock at 12.46, well clear of American world record holder Kendra Harrison who was second in 12.66.  Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan was third in 12.71.  Another Jamaican in the race, Janeek Brown, was 5th with a time of 12.79.

Despite being satisfied with the win, Williams, who admitted that she has been focused on her race execution, was not entirely pleased with how things unfolded.

“To be honest I didn't execute that properly. I banged my knee on one of the hurdles but I came away with the win so I'm happy. It wasn't that important to win, this is another race on the way to the Diamond League finals and whether I won or lost, execution was my only focus,” Williams said following the race.

“Every time I've been racing I've been consistent with my times and that is the main thing for me.”

The result leaves Williams as the top Diamond Race qualifier after three wins for 31 points.  Harrison is next with two wins and 23 points.

Jamaica World Champion Yohan Blake is increasingly confident of hitting his best form in time for the Doha World Championships, following a narrow win to claim the men’s 100m title, at the Birmingham Diamond League meet on Sunday.

Blake just got the better of Britain's Adam Gemili, who erased a comfortable early lead by the Jamaican to ensure a photo finish.  Both athletes were clocked at 10.07 seconds but Blake was declared the winner.  The United States’ Mike Rodgers was third with a time of 10.09.  Another Jamaican in the race Tyquendo Tracey was 6th in 10.14.

  It wasn’t the fastest time, considering a barely legal +2.0 seconds but the Jamaican athlete was pleased with the result nonetheless.

"It was coming," said Blake, who suffered a career-threatening hamstring injury in 2013.

"The weather wasn't great but I'm saving the big day for the world championships and the Diamond League finals in Zurich," said Blake. "I can run faster."

Despite holding the second-fastest times ever run over both the 100m and 200m, Blake has been overshadowed by the American trio of Christian Coleman, Justin Gatlin and Noah Lyles so far this year.  Coleman was expected to take part in the Birmingham Diamond League but had withdrawn from the race earlier in the week.

 

Jamaica international Michael Hector is likely to be without regular first-team football until the next transfer window after deadline day moves to Sheffield Wednesday and Fulham collapsed.

The 27-year-old defender signed with Premier League club Chelsea in 2015 but has spent all his time on various loan spells.  Since signing for the Blues, at Stamford Bridge, the Jamaican has been loaned back to Reading to Frankfurt, Hull City, and Sheffield Wednesday.

Having clearly found himself to not be a part of new manager Frank Lampard’s plans, Hector was in talks with Sheffield Wednesday over a permanent move a few days before the close of the summer window. 

Chelsea were, however, said to want £5 million for Hector, who recently entered the final year of his contract with the club for whom he has never played a competitive fixture. 

The player came close to joining Fulham on Thursday but that move fell through.  Fulham were hopeful of landing Hector before the window closed but couldn't as they were still waiting on the agreement for Ryan Sessegnon to be completed with Tottenham.

The Cottagers were then forced to go for other targets on loan in order to comply with FFP regulations.  Hector is, however, expected to join the club in the January window.

 

Reggae Boyz striker Shamar Nicholson is moving on from Slovenian club NK Domzale after signing a contract to play for Belgian club Sporting Charleroi.

Jamaica quarter-miler Shericka Jackson put on a superb display to claim top spot in the women’s 400m at the 2019 Pan American Games on Thursday.

Jackson, who has been in superb form all season, clocked an easy looking 50.73, well clear of second-place Paola Moran of Mexico who captured silver with 51.02.  Third place went to the USA’s Courtney Okolo who stopped the clock in 51.22.

Two other Caribbean athletes in the race, Amelia Williams of Barbados and Aliyah Abrams of Guyana were 6th and 7th respectively.  Charging out of lane 5 and 6 Jackson and Okolo were quickly up on the rest of the field but it was the Jamaica who powered past at 150m before pulling away for a comfortable win down the stretch.

“It was an honour to win here tonight.  It’s the Independence weekend so this is a gift for Jamaica,” Jackson said following the race.

“I just wanted to execute the perfect race and I think my first 200 was good enough, so there and then I decided I wanted my final 200 to be perfect as well, so I ran the final 180 as quickly as I could,” she added.

Jackson also dedicated the win to the late Constantine Haughton who encourage the athlete to compete in the 400m.

Rising Jamaican sprint phenom Briana Williams has admitted the country’s reverence for the sport of track and field made it an easy decision to choose the tiny Caribbean island over the United States.

The 17-year-old Williams is considered one of the brightest up and coming prospects in the sport of athletics. In fact, the sprinter is expected to follow a long line of exceptional Jamaican sprinters, the likes of which include Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Elaine Thompson and the legendary Usain Bolt. 

Williams was, however, born in the United States, a country that has a proud track and field legacy of its own.  For the diminutive young sprinter, however, the choice between the track and field rivals was always a straight forward one.

“I was grown up in the Jamaica tradition way.  All the time when I was watching the Olympics, I would see Bolt and Shelly-Ann winning and think I want to be like them,” Williams said recently, in a podcast with the Olympic Channel.

“America has football, baseball they are more fans of that. In Jamaica, they show support to their track athletes and I like that.  In America, there is track but it's not at the same level.  When the Jamaica athletes are at the Olympics or World Championships, there is screaming in the middle of the streets and people cheering them on.  I like that culture more,” she added.  

Boldon, the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic bronze medalist, was in complete agreement.  Like Williams, Boldon could also have represented Jamaica as he was born in Port of Spain to a Jamaican mother.

“Even me being from Trinidad and Tobago, sometimes track and field athletes, despite us having the bulk of our Olympic medals, are not as revered in Trinidad and Tobago, like it is in Jamaica,” Boldon said.

“Many times during my career, when I saw the support for Jamaican athletes, I used to saw wow maybe Jamaica should have been the place I ran for because it just matters more," he added.

Williams, the World U-20 sprint double Champion, will represent Jamaica at the Doha World Championships later this year.   

Jamaican diver Yona Knight-Wisdom’s silver medal in the 1-metre springboard event at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru may not have been a complete surprise, but the dive he used to get him on the podium was.

Knight-Wisdom, posted a video of a backward triple from the three-metre diving board, saying it was crazy to think this was his worst dive in the not-too-distant past.

“Can we just take a minute to appreciate that his used to be my worst dive on 3M,” said Knight-Wisdom.

The dive gave Knight-Wisdom 81.6 points on the 1-metre board, with one judge scoring it as a nine.

Those points went a long way to helping Knight-Wisdom, Jamaica’s first Olympic diver, to 429.90 overall points and a silver medal.

“Someone tell me how that’s possible please,” said Knight-Wisdom, who takes on the 3-metre event today.

Knight-Wisdom received congratulations from the Jamaica Olympic Association and minister of sport, Olivia Grange.

Grange said: Yona himself said his silver medal was a fitting gift for Jamaica on Emancipation Day and on behalf of the nation I wish to thank him for his historic performance.”

Knight-Wisdom is the first diver to ever win a medal at the Pan Am games for Jamaica.

Another medal came Jamaica’s way at the Pan Am games through an unlikely source, as super heavyweight boxer, one of the few from the island, Ricardo Brown, mined bronze.

This wasn’t the first-ever for Jamaica, but it is the first in 16 years.

The Jamaica Olympic Association and Jamaican trainer Dewith Frazer, were credited with helping to achieve the feat, as the two came together to put on a one-month training camp for Brown in the United States that went a long way to making him more prepared.

"At that gym, Ricardo was able to work with boxers in his weight class and this helped him a great deal because in Jamaica there is a scarcity of boxers in that weight category,” said Leroy Brown, Jamaica Boxing Board General Secretary.

MLS All-Stars Andre Blake and Kemar Lawrence are hoping to pave a path for future generations of Jamaican players, after creating history at this year’s edition of the All-Star Game.

The duo's appearance in a match-up against Spanish La Liga team Atletico Madrid will mark the first time two Jamaicans have been selected on the same All-Stars team.

 Blake, the Jamaica national team captain, and Lawrence, once of its best defenders, represent a growing list that opted to play their football in North American as opposed to heading straight to the European leagues.

The list, which includes the likes of Alvas Powell, Darren Mattocks, and Peter-Lee Vassell are crucial cogs in Jamaica national team that has made it to three straight Gold Cup semi-finals and two finals.

“It should motivate the kids back there to help them to believe the sky is the limit,” Blake told Pro Soccer USA. “And they just have to keep working hard, worry about nothing and everything will take care of itself,” he added.

“It definitely brings a lot of inspiration.  Even those who did not believe are starting to believe right now. That’s always a good thing for me. I always want to inspire youths, to have them believe in their dreams and believe that anything is possible. For me and him, it’s definitely a big thing. We have to keep going and keep knowing that the sky is the limit and understand there are always younger generations that are looking up to us.”

 

 

Jamaica Under-23 coach Donovan Duckie has called the team that was recently eliminated CONCACAF Men's Olympic Qualifiers as one of the worst physically prepared he has coached.

Despite being heavy favoured to advance to the next round of the competition, the Jamaicans were surprisingly eliminated after draws with St Kitts and Nevis and Dominica.

 In the face of mounting criticism in the wake of the team’s failure to qualify, the coach recently revealed that the unit faced major shortcomings in terms of its physical preparation.

“I’ve been accused of being an antagonist and a person that lacks diplomacy.  So for months, I have been saying on several interviews that everything is ok with the Under-23 program,” a leaked voice note identified as Duckie claimed.

In my last interview, I said I took full responsibility for the failure of the team to progress but to tell you the truth this isn’t so, the responsibility has to be shared,” he added.

“When I took the job there were certain conditionalities, one was that the JFF provide a physical trainer. For over eight months a physical trainer has only come to a training session for three days. I can say that this is the worst physically team I have ever seen in my entire life…we cannot play competitively for over 60 minutes in any game and these are the results.”

The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) has confirmed its knowledge of the recordings and have promised to launch an investigation into the matter before an appropriate response of made.

Norwegian division one club IK Start has refused to entertain offers for Jamaican international Damion Lowe, despite several proposals put on the table for the player this transfer window, reports have claimed.

The 26-year-old defender has been a standout performer in recent times and played a crucial role for Jamaica in a third straight run to the CONCACAF Gold Cup semi-finals.

The defenders outstanding performances have not escaped the attention of scouts, with sources claiming the player has already received offers from Turkey, Belgium, Russia, Germany, Norway and the United States MLS. 

According to the club’s Sporting Director Tor-Kristian Karlsen, who earlier this year outlined a plan for the team becoming one of Norway’s elite in three-years, the club is not inclined to easily part with one of its prized assets.

“I can confirm that there has been great interest in Damion both from the Elite series and from abroad but we want to keep him,” Karlsen said.

“I can confirm that there have been bids that we have rejected, but I do not want to go into which clubs they are from,” he added.

Lowe, the son of former Jamaica international Onandi Lowe, has made 17 appearances for Jamaica’s national team.

The Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) has expressed extreme disappointment with the statements attributed to certain female Olympians (in a recent Sportmax article intituled "Upgraded and Disrespected") who received  upgraded 4 x 400m relay silver medals from the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympic Games during the Mueller Anniversary Games in London on July 20.

 

The statements conveyed the impression that the JOA neglected to make appropriate arrangements regarding the attendance of the Olympians at the medal reallocation ceremony in London.

 

The JOA, in responding, enumerated the facts:

 

  1. In compliance with directives of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the JOA was requested to indicate a preferred event at which the medal reallocation ceremony for the Olympians could be held.

 

  1. On May 30, 2019, after consultation with the Olympians, the JOA informed the IOC of the agreed selection of the IAAF World Championships to be held in Doha from September 27 to October 6, 2019.

 

  1. On June 4 the JOA received communication from the IOC advising that discussions will be held with the IAAF regarding the selected event.

 

  1. On June 12, 2019, the JOA received communication from the IOC in which it was informed of the IAAF's advice that the ceremony could not be facilitated at the World Athletics Championships.

 

  1. The Olympians were accordingly advised and, following discussions with Novlene Williams-Mills, Rosemarie White and Bobbygaye Wilkins, Novlene Williams-Mills (who from representations held herself out to be the spokesperson) suggested either a Diamond League event during August or September or the IAAF Gala scheduled for later in the year both of which would be convenient to the JOA.

 

  1. On June 25, 2016, the JOA requested the IOC to give consideration to the proposed events for the ceremony. However, on July 1, 2019 the IOC advised that the IAAF could only accommodate the ceremony during the London edition of the Diamond League Meets which was scheduled to take place on July 20 and 21, 2019.

 

  1. The information was relayed by the JOA to the Olympians the same day for their review and decision and simultaneously they were advised to take into consideration the fact that the event being only three weeks away, there may be logistic challenges particularly in view of firstly, the fact that persons including some Olympians and their allowed guests required visas and, secondly, the imminent games commitments and preparation requirements of the JOA which may very well preclude attendance.

 

  1. All Olympians with the exception of Shericka Williams (who preferred the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games) notwithstanding confirmed on July 3 their decision in favour of the London Diamond League Meet scheduled for July 20 and 21. Ms. Williams eventually agreed and, with the consent of all Olympians, the JOA informed the IOC that same day of their decision.

 

  1. In keeping with the advice of the IOC, each Olympian was allowed two accompany guests to the ceremony. Accordingly, the number of persons in the party totaled eighteen and of this number, nine persons (three athletes and six guests) required UK visas.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. The JOA assisted all nine persons in applying for visas which entailed completion by the JOA of the relevant application forms at the request of the Olympians, payment of visa fees, payment of the airfare for two athletes and one guest to come to Jamaica for the visa appointments, hotel accommodation for one overseas athletes and a guest, personal delivery of copies of application forms and letters to the Olympians' homes in Kingston and the JOA's interface with the British High Commission in expediting the visa process. Total payments by the JOA exceeded one million dollars.

 

  1. The JOA, at all material times, stated in emails and telephone conversations  to the Olympians the advice of the IOC that the IOC would be responsible for flight arrangements to and from the event as well as hotel accommodation in London and that the IOC would liaise with the IAAF regarding transportation and event logistics during their stay in London.

 

  1. On July 18, 2019, the JOA received from the IOC the logistic arrangements which were conveyed to the Olympians on the morning of July 19, 2019.The JOA reiterates that matters relating to the on the day ceremonial arrangements were not in the JOA's remit.

 

  1. Throughout the treatment of matters, the JOA constantly kept the  Olympians advised and updated every step of the way by copious emails, telephone calls and instant messaging and devoted considerable time (often in the wee hours of the morning) in completing visa applications online for the Olympians and guests, in interfacing with the Olympians (including ceremonial attire) and in communicating with the IOC regarding arrangements.

 

  1. The JOA is obliged, given the attributed statements, to place on record that Mrs. Novlene Willliams-Mills, during the planning process, tendered an apology to the JOA for inappropriate conduct and mis-conceived concerns articulated by her and not shared by others. 

 

 

 

  1. From the very inception, the JOA offered the Olympians congratulations on their elevation to the silver medal position and, upon confirmation of the medal reallocation ceremony in London, expressed an apology for absence, given primarily its prior commitments and obligations respecting the 2019 Lima Pan American Games.

 

  1. The JOA is further obliged to again place on record that, subsequent to the publication of the article by Sportmax, it received thank you notes and emails from Shereefa LLoyd and her Nephew, Rosemarie Whyte, Bobbygaye Wilkins and Christine Day and is consequently appreciative of their kind recognition of its efforts.

 

  1. The JOA always celebrates with our athletes and commends them on their well-deserved achievements personally and on behalf of country and continues to be inspired by the principles of integrity, honesty, equity and fair play in the discharge of its national obligations to, and dealings with, its stakeholders.

The Jamaica Olympic Association has sought to clear up suggestions it neglected to pay full respsect to six Jamaican Olympians who collected upgraded silver medals during the Mueller Anniversary Games in London last week.

The six, who were having bronze medals from the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympics upgraded, had voiced disappointment that there were no Jamaican officials to share what was a proud moment for them.

According to the JOA though, every effort was made to be present and the presence of the girls at the ceremony in London, had much to do with its efforts to ensure the event took place at a time convenient to the athletes.

“We didn’t have a representative from Jamaica, from the JOA, no one. I feel disappointed,” Novlene Williams-Mills had said after the occasion.

Williams-Mills, along with Shereefa Lloyd, Shericka Williams, Rosemarie Whyte-Robinson, and Bobby-Gaye Wilkins collected silver medals for the mile relay in 2008 while Christine Day, Lloyd, Whyte-Robinson, Williams and Williams-Mills, collected silver medals for 2012.

“For many years I represented Jamaica at the highest level. I have represented Jamaica at four Olympics at the highest level, World Championships at the highest level. I’ve made multiple Jamaica teams and for not one person from the JOA or in sports was able to make sure everything went smoothly and to ensure that we were taken care of was really disappointing.”

According to the the Olympic body, however, upon being informed of the medal ceremony, they entered into discussions with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) about scheduling a convenient date for all stakeholders.

Despite those efforts, however, the JOA was not able to send representatives because of prior commitments to the 2019 Pan America Games in Lima, Peru.

The challenge in being able to attend, the JOA said, was relayed to the athletes but that all preparations for a smooth medal ceremony, inclusive of accommodation and airtravel had been handled by the International Olympic Committee.

“They were advised to take into consideration the fact that the event being only three weeks away, there may be logistic challenges, particularly in view of firstly, the fact that persons including some Olympians and their allowed guests required visas and, secondly, the imminent games commitments and preparation requirements of the JOA which may very well preclude attendance,” the body said in a statement on Friday.

The body was also quick to point out that the view that the athletes were not seen as priority was erroneous, and that it would always seek to commend the athletes on their achievements.

 

With regard to the arrangements being made, the JOA said the Olympians were informed that the IOC would be responsible for flight arrangements to and from the event, as well as hotel accommodations and that the IOC would liaise with the IAAF regarding transportation and event logistics.

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