They're destined to be teammates at the CONCACAF Gold Cup in around a months’ time but New York Red Bulls left back Kemar Lawrence insists that the battle with Cincinnati FC forward Darren Mattocks will be a fierce one for pride when the two meet in Saturday’s MLS encounter.

The 26-year-old defender, formerly a staple in the Red Bulls line-up, has been eased back into action after suffering an MCL injury.  The defender also missed the last two games with an illness.  Having moved to Cincinnati from DC United in the summer Mattocks has begun life slowly at his new club, coming off the substitute’s bench in FC Cincy’s first three games - picking up an assist, but failing to register a start in those combined 106 minutes.  Since making his first start in March, however, Mattocks has scored one goal.

 “When we meet, it’s something more personal. It’s kind of a bragging rights thing,” Lawrence said.

 “When we get to national team camp, you want to say you beat that Darren Mattocks, Alvas Powell, [Andre] Blake, whoever it is you’re facing on the day. You need those bragging rights before you get to camp,” he added.

 “You’re going to get that guy who is going to try his best to score, he’s going to always be running, always be pressuring the defenders.”

 

 The Social Development Commission (SDC), Wray & Nephew National Community T20 Cricket Competition, endorsed by the Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA), bowls off on Saturday, May 4, promising to bring communities closer together while sharing the spirit of Cricket.

Portmore United coach Shavar Thomas believes the team’s ability to enforce their will on challengers Waterhouse was a crucial component of successfully defending the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) on Monday night.

Portmore emerged the victors from a tempestuous affair courtesy of a 51st-minute strike from Ricardo Morrison.  The title holders had, however, dominated the proceedings before then and were perhaps good value for the eventual lead.

“We came here to enforce our will, bossing the game and keeping possession and that’s not Waterhouse’s style and it forced them to think,” Thomas said.

“It was important we kept that momentum heading into the second half and that’s what brought us the goal.  We kept possession, lulled them to sleep and waited for the right time and it was the right time,” he added.

“We practised and trained for every eventuality and everything they threw at us we were able to deal with.”    

The victory saw the defending champions add the title to claiming the league, which they won by four points.  Waterhouse were also the second-place team on that occasion.

The Jamaica International Invitational, the local meet where retired sprint king Usain Bolt once thrilled fans with outstanding performances, will not be held this year.

The meet, which has been held every year since 2004, often brought some of track and field’s biggest names to Jamaica soil.  In addition to Bolt, who set the meet’s respectable 100m record of 9.76 seconds in 2008 and 19.56 in the 200m two years later, Americans Jasmin Stowers, Carmelita Jeter and Kerron Clement have set some eye-popping marks.  In 2011 Jeter stopped the clock at 10.86 in the women’s 100m, Clement thrilled fans with his brisk 47.79 400m hurdles run in 2008 and Stowers set the mark of 12.39 in the women’s 100m hurdles in 2015.

Despite those glowing performances, the meet which was upgraded to an IAAF World Challenge event had struggled to secure funding in recent years.  According to organizers, the issue has led to the cancellation of the 2019 edition of the event, which was originally scheduled to take place at the National Stadium on May 4.  A message posted on jainvite.com the official page of the event confirmed its cancellation.  At this stage, the future of the Invitational remains unclear.

 

Jamaica’s team of Shericka Jackson, Janieve Russell, Christine day and Stephenie McPherson only had their compatriots for company as they easily claimed 4x400 women’s honours at the 125th staging of the Penn Relays at the Franklin Field Stadium. 

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce is getting in as many races as possible as she seeks to get back to her very best ahead of the 2019 World Championships of Athletics. 

The Jamaica bobsled team's pilot has been banned in a doping case, but avoided disqualification from last year's Winter Olympics.

The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation says it agreed with Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian to issue a one-year ban which was immediately canceled out by time she served on provisional suspension before the case was heard.

The IBSF says it accepted Fenlator-Victorian's explanation that a contaminated supplement caused her to test positive for clenbuterol in January 2018, the month before the Olympics in Pyeongchang.

It adds that "fairness requires" she shouldn't be disqualified from competitions between the positive test and her provisional suspension, which would include Jamaica's 18th place at the Olympics.

Fenlator-Victorian partnered Lolo Jones at the 2014 Olympics for the United States, finishing 11th.

Some of Jamaica’s top athletes will get valuable relay practice for the upcoming IAAF World Relays when they suit up for the annual Penn Relays at the Franklin Field in Philadelphia from April 24-27.

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Elaine Thompson are down the run the 4x200m relays at the IAAF World Relays set for Yokohama, Japan on May 12 and 13. Meanwhile, veteran Yohan Blake will Jamaica’s 4x100m campaign.

The 42-member team named by the Jamaica Athletic Administrative Association (JAAA) on Wednesday, sees reigning CAC 100m champion Jonielle Smith, Jura Levy, Natasha Morrison, Sashalee Forbes and Sherone Simpson down to contest the 4x100m women.

Blake, Julian Forte, Tyquendo Tracey, Jevaughn Minzie and Kenroy Anderson have been named in the men’s 4x100 squad.

The 4x200m female squad is comprised of Shericka Jackson, Sashalee Forbes, Elaine Thompson, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Stephanie Ann McPherson. Forte, Nigel Ellis, Rasheed Dwyer and Oshane Bailey were assembled for the men’s squad.

Jamaica’s 4x400m squads include Demish Gaye, Fitzroy Dunkley, Rusheen McDonald, Ackeem Bloomfield and Nathon Allen. The women’s team also looks a strong squad with Christine Day, Chrisann Gordon, Anastasia Le-Roy, Janieve Russell and Roneisha McGregor.

For the mixed relays, the JAAA selection committee went with Rhonda Whyte, Tiffany James, Shian Salmon, Javon Francis, Anthony Carpenter and Jamari Rose while Yanique Thompson, Megan Tapper, Amoi Brown, Andrew Riley, Norman Pittersgill and Ronald Levy will contest the newly introduced shuttle mixed relays.

The team to be managed by Ludlow Watts will have Maurice Wilson as its head coach.

A day after reports emerged that she has signed a professional contract with global sportswear giant, Nike, Reggae Girlz striker Khadija ‘Bunny’ Shaw, was named Female Athlete of the Year at the 13th annual Volscars on Monday night.

Jamaica is to host the 2019 CONCACAF Caribbean Club Championships from May 12-19, 2019 at the Stadium East in Kingston.

Jamaica swept the sprint relays, the sprint hurdles and the 4x400m relays on Sunday’s final day to close out the 2019 Carifta Games in emphatic fashion.

Jamaica’s football bosses are breathing a collective sigh of relief following news that their first choice goalkeeper Andre Blake is expected to recover from injury in time to start in the CONCACAF Gold Cup in June.

Rising Jamaica sprint sensation easily dismissed the field to complete the Carifta sprint double with a seasons best time in the U-20 women’s 200m on Sunday.

The 17-year-old junior World Champion sprang from the blocks and blasted through the field to hit the top of the corner first, gradually pulling away to leave her opponents well and truly beaten.  Williams stopped the clock in a speedy 22.89, well clear of second place compatriot Joanne Reid who crossed the line in 23.69. Third place went to Beyonce Defreitas of the British Virgin Islands who finished in 23.79.

On Saturday, Williams had won in similar fashion, putting away the 100m field to win in a time of 11.25.  On that occasion getting the better of Trinidad and Tobago’s Akila Lewis and compatriot Kemba Nelson.

In the men’s equivalent, the Jamaican’s also claimed the top two podium spots.  Xavier Nairne crossed the line in first spot, stopping the clock at 20.65.  Antonio Watson closed strong to finish in 20.83, just ahead of the Bahamas’ Terrence Jones who was third in 20.89.

 

 

Jamaica’s Shaquena Foote claimed a second gold medal at the 2019 Carifta Games after easily claiming the U-20 women’s 400m hurdles title in the Caymans Islands on Sunday.

Foote, who claimed the U-20 women’s 400m title on Saturday, once again had very little difficulty putting away the field.  The Jamaican had a slight stumble at the first hurdle, but had full control of the race by the top of the stretch and pulled away from the field to stop the clock at 58.02.

It was a one-two finish in the end for the Jamaicans as Johnelle Thomas finished strongly behind her teammate, claiming the silver medal with a time of 58.77.  Trinidad and Tobago’s Tamia Badal was third in 1:02.34. 

The Jamaicans similarly dominated the U-17 event, with gold and silver going to Quaycian Davis and Sashel Reid respectively.  David took top spot after stopping the clock in 1:00.78, with Sashel Reid second in 1:01.59.  Reshae Dean of the Bahamas was third in 1:03.52.

In the men’s equivalent, Rasheem Griffith of Barbados showed his class after decimating the field to claim gold in 51.47.  Matthew Thompson of Barbados overtook Jamaica’s Shamar Brown for second place, eventually stopping the clock in 52.23.  Brown was third in 52.51.

In the U-17 equivalent, it was the Jamaicans who stole the show once again after one-two finishes for Jayden Brown(53.03) and Sharvis Simmonds (54.11).  Aren Spencer of Barbados was third in 54.26.

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