On this day in sport: Brazil make World Cup history, LeBron's wait comes to an end

By Sports Desk June 21, 2020

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  • Shan and deliver - Pakistan attack cash in on opener's heroics Shan and deliver - Pakistan attack cash in on opener's heroics

    Pakistan's sparkling and lethal bowling attack left England reeling at the end of day two after Shan Masood's excellent century put the tourists in charge of the first Test.

    Star batsman Babar Azam was removed by James Anderson without adding to his overnight 69 as England checked Pakistan's day-one momentum with impressive discipline during the morning session.

    But the indefatigable Masood remained and found a willing ally in Shadab Khan (45) before the century-maker became the ninth man to fall, making 156 out of 326 all out.

    New ball pair Shaheen Afridi and Mohammad Abbas then removed England openers Rory Burns and Dom Sibley cheaply, both lbw, before Abbas cleaned up Ben Stokes for a duck with a sensational delivery.

    Captain Joe Root's 58-ball stay yielded 14 runs before he was out caught behind, cutting leg-spinner Yasir Shah, meaning the bulk of England's hopes rested with Ollie Pope (46 not out) as they closed on 92-4 – 234 in arrears.

    After an underwhelming Wednesday outing on his home ground, Anderson (1-63) was bang on the money in the first over of the day and tempted Babar into a drive he edged to Root at first slip.

    Broad (3-54) accounted for Asad Shafiq in similar fashion, with Stokes the catcher, and the similarly assured Chris Woakes (2-43) had Mohammad Rizwan caught behind by Jos Buttler, who endured an otherwise torrid innings with the gloves.

    England had a sniff of Pakistan's vulnerable lower order but Shadab put on 105 for the sixth wicket with Shan, who reached a fourth Test century, and third in as many outings, off 251 deliveries.

    Shadab slapped Dom Bess to Root at midwicket with 50 in sight, which was Shan's cue to put his foot down as Jofra Archer (3-59) and Broad split the tail between them – the latter having implored in inimitable fashion for the centurion's scalp.

    Shaheen's pace and Abbas' wily precision got Pakistan quickly stuck into the England middle order, with Stokes losing his stumps when driving at a majestic delivery that decked away from him.

    Pope found a fluency that eluded his captain, meeting the challenge of considerable speed and skill with a nicely judged counter-attack he must now build substantially upon.

  • Jamaica's pearl status in the Caribbean against all the odds Jamaica's pearl status in the Caribbean against all the odds

    Last year I visited Trinidad and Tobago, met Brian Lara, did a couple of SSFL matches, walked the streets of Port of Spain, had some spicy doubles and attended the biggest party in sport. And needless to say, I fell in love with the twin-island republic. It was too short a stay.

    It was the first time visiting another Caribbean island, and I was even enamoured by the fact they had street lights, even on their highways. Because in Jamaica... in many instances ... the road is only lit by vehicular traffic.

    My friend Mariah Ramharack, a native of Trinidad and Tobago and my co-worker, saw the funny side in seeing my starry eyes.

    It is said that Paris is the city of lights. However, through the eyes of this novice wanna-be traveller, sweet, sweet T&T was all that and a bag of chips.

    That trip really opened up a craving to travel more, because being Jamaican, living in Jamaica and not travelling outside of Jamaica certainly limits my scope and my view of the world.

    Having said all of that... Jamaica is one heck of a country, and I'm proud that this is the country of my birth.

    What Jamaica has achieved as a nation, especially in sport, is incredible. We have led the way in the Caribbean and indeed much of the world in track and field, making a massive impact at the Olympics and the World Championships. Our athletes have showcased not just our talents but our culture. And I believe Jamaica's renaissance in track and field in 2008 at the Beijing Olympics is linked with the country's renaissance in tourism since that time, with tourist arrivals increasing by over 50 per cent according to tradingeconomics.com.

    We can claim to have sport's greatest-ever ambassador in Usain Bolt, and some of the greatest-ever female sprinters to grace the world in Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Veronica Campbell-Brown and Merlene Ottey.

    We also have some of the most notable cricketers from George Headley to Michael Holding, Courtney Walsh to Christopher Henry Gayle.

    We also have the first black woman to win a global title in swimming – Alia Atkinson.

    And as far as team sport is concerned, our Sunshine Girls are right up there in the world of netball while our Reggae Boyz made us so proud at the 1998 World Cup in France.

    These are just the tip of a massive iceberg of representation and pride over the years which began even before our Independence in 1962 in no small part due to the aforementioned Headley as well as the likes of Arthur Wint and Herb McKenley, George Rhoden and Leslie Laing.

    All of these stories were laced with adversity, which appears to be the driving force of Jamaica’s success.

    It is our blessing, and for many others who have fallen by the wayside, it is our curse.

    A cursory glimpse at the government’s expenditure on sport sees Jamaica spending far less than Trinidad and Tobago.

    Trinidad and Tobago spends roughly five times more than Jamaica and even the Bahamas spends twice as much as the land of wood and water. The economies dictate that this should be the status quo for now.

    Our emergence in the world is powered by sheer will and determination, and pressure. And maybe that is the true story of Jamaica. Because how else would pearls be made?

    Donald Oliver is a football and cricket commentator and a senior producer at SportsMax. Learn more about him at www.thedonaldoliver.com or email him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

  • Eric Garcia to leave Man City? Another frustrating exit for the Etihad academy Eric Garcia to leave Man City? Another frustrating exit for the Etihad academy

    Manchester City's preparations for their eagerly awaited Champions League showdown against Real Madrid have been thrown into flux by the news teenage centre-back Eric Garcia will not sign a new contract at the club.

    Garcia has established himself as Pep Guardiola's first-choice central defensive partner for Aymeric Laporte since the Premier League resumed.

    However, the 19-year-old has been heavily linked with a return to boyhood club Barcelona and Camp Nou looks increasingly likely to be his next destination following Guardiola's shock disclosure on Thursday.

    Garcia is far from the first bright young thing to look beyond the environs of the Etihad Campus. Here, we look at how those next moves panned out, as Phil Foden's impressive first-team breakthrough increasingly looks like the exception to the rule.

    ERIC GARCIA

    Garcia's defection feels like it will cut Guardiola deep – the City boss having lavished praise upon "a guy who doesn't make mistakes", making for a pointed contrast with the out-of-favour Nicolas Otamendi and John Stones. Plenty of City youngsters have had a strong argument in terms of having no obvious pathway to the first team but, even allowing for the arrival of Nathan Ake and further reinforcements being sought at centre-back, this in not really a case Garcia can make.

    He made seven of his 13 Premier League appearances after lockdown this term. It seems a simple case of Barcelona's allure being too strong to ignore.

    BRAHIM DIAZ

    Brahim is back in Manchester this week with Real Madrid, meaning his reasons for departing have common ground with the Garcia situation. The forward was similarly offered fresh terms at the Etihad Stadium but, despite 15 appearances and two goals across all competitions, the plethora of attacking options at Guardiola's disposal undoubtedly came into his thinking. Madrid paid €17million for Brahim last January and have not shown a great deal more inclination to give him a run at the highest level.

    RABBI MATONDO

    Another attacking player who assessed the star-studded cast ahead of him and decided he would be better off elsewhere. The curious thing about Matondo's €9m move to Schalke in the same month Brahim left is he had not troubled Guardiola's first-team squad, even if he had made the breakthrough with Wales at international level. Eighteen months on, he has 27 Bundesliga appearances and two goals to his name. It is nevertheless difficult to imagine Matondo taking the course of action he did without another man blazing a trail...

    JADON SANCHO

    Sancho was set for a place on City's 2017-18 pre-season tour alongside Foden. But while his fellow England youth international went on to enjoy a sparkling debut against Manchester United in the International Champions Cup, Sancho kicked his heels at home. Contract negotiations and, as a result, relations with City had broken down. In the bigger picture was the club looking to add Alexis Sanchez to their already considerable forward line.

    Sancho sensed his career would be allowed to flourish at Borussia Dortmund and, as he reportedly moves towards a return to England at Manchester United having established himself as one of the most lethal attackers in Europe, it is impossible to argue he was proved anything other than emphatically correct. If he steps out at Old Trafford next season, it will sting on the blue side of Manchester.

    JASON DENAYER

    Denayer's tale is arguably one that came into the thinking of Sancho and others when considering their future prospects at the Etihad Stadium. Having impressed on loan at Celtic in 2014-15, City gave the Belgium defender a five-year contract. They then signed Nicolas Otamendi for £32m and loaned the youngster to Galatasaray, where he returned in 2017-18 after a season with Sunderland. Denayer will also play in the Champions League last-16 this week with Lyon, who he joined in 2018 for €10m having never managed a competitive appearance for City.

    MARCOS 'RONY' LOPES

    In the same month Denayer received wildly mixed messages about his future, Portuguese winger Lopes moved to Monaco for €12m after spending the previous season in Ligue 1 at Lille. He produced a handful of exciting cameos while on the fringes of Manuel Pellegrini's City squad, having become the club's youngest ever goalscorer at 17 years and eight days in a January 2013 FA Cup win over Watford. Even then, Lopes – who recently joined Nice on loan from Sevilla – saw the writing on the wall.

    "I knew it wouldn't change anything because I knew the players at City at the time, I knew the money involved," he told The Athletic earlier this year. "I knew in my head that to play more, I would have to leave."

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