Living like a sprinter and improving on her speed and strength have resulted in Stephenie-Ann McPherson running her 400m lifetime best at the Jamaica National Championships on Sunday.

Natoya Goule-Toppin won her eighth 800m national title in impressive fashion and Shericka Jackson cruised into Sunday’s final with the fastest time in the 200m on Saturday’s penultimate day of Jamaica’s National Championships at the National Stadium in Kingston.

Like Jackson, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, fresh off winning her fourth 100m title on Friday night, was also impressive in advancing to Sunday’s final where she will once again face off with Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah, who was third in Friday night’s 100m final.

Goule, who has been enjoying an impressive season, clocked a season-best 1:57.84 in a commanding performance in the two-lap event. She was in control from the start and pulled away after the first lap to run her fastest time since she ran a national record 1:56.15 in 2018.

Second was Jasmine Fray who ran 2:03.92 and Aisha Praught-Leer third in 2:05.31, times that are well short of the Olympic standard of 1:59.50 and so neither will make the trip to Japan this summer.

In the semi-finals of the Women 200m, Jackson and Fraser-Pryce both achieved the Olympic standard of 22.80 heading into Sunday’s final. Jackson was the most impressive qualifier cruising to a time of 22.28 easing down to win her semi-final heat ahead of Ashanti Moore who ran a personal best of 22.86.

Natalliah Whyte also made the final on time when she finished third in 23.15.

Fraser-Pryce was also impressive easing down considerably to win her heat in 22.40 over Natasha Morrison, who ran 23.08 for second place and an automatic place in the final. Kevona Davis made it through on time when she clocked 23.20.

Thompson-Herah was the slowest of the semi-final winners as she eased to victory in 22.90. Finishing second was Briana Williams, who was fourth in Friday night’s 100m. The 19-year-old Nike athlete clocked 23.48.

No other runner from that heat advanced to the final.

Meanwhile, Julian Forte was the fastest man heading into Sunday’s final when he clocked 20.22 to win his heat ahead of Rasheed Dwyer, who ran 20.30.

Schoolboy Antonio Watson made it into the final on time as he ran 20.53 for third.

Yohan Blake ran 20.29 easing down to win his heat and qualify for the final.  Romario Williams was the other automatic qualifier in 20.78 from that heat.

The opening heat was won by 100m champion Tyquendo Tracey in 20.38 ahead of Nigel Ellis (20.41). Jevaughn Minzie (20.43) made it through on time.

Christopher Taylor was the fastest man heading into the finals of the 400m. Taylor ran 45.31 to advance along with Karayme Bartley, who ran 45.40 from the first semi-final. Sean Bailey advanced from the other semi-final running 45.42 to finish ahead of Demish Gaye 45.83.

The other finalists were Rusheen McDonald (46.03), Javier Brown (46.07), Keeno Burrell (46.14) and Nathon Allen (46.17).

Stephenie-Ann McPherson ran an impressive 50.18 to advance to the finals along with Stacey-Ann Williams (50.84),  Candice McLeod (51.04), Charokee Young (51.40), Roneisha McGregor (50.97), Tovea Jenkins (51.72), Tiffany James (51.77) and Junelle Bromfield (51.78).

World U20 silver medalist Britanny Anderson cruised into the final of the 100m hurdles taking her heat in 12.65 ahead of Megan Tapper, who ran a season-best 12.86. Also through was the 2019 World Championship silver medalist who won her semi-final in 12.70 ahead of Yanique Thompson, who ran a season-best 12.73.

Daszay Freeman was third in 12.82 which means she also qualifies for the final.

Ackera Nugent recovered from a bad start to win her semi-final in 12.78. Shimayra Williams also booked her place in the final clocking 12.87. Jeanine Williams makes it in on time after crossing the finish line in 13.04.

On a night when the USA’s Grant Holloway came within 0.01 of the world record, Omar McLeod was given a scare in his semi-final heat that he managed to win ahead Ronald Levy as both advanced to the final. McLeod ran his second-fastest time of the season 13.04 and had to work hard to shake off Levy, who ran a season-best 13.08 for second place.

Olympic medalist Hansle Parchment, who is returning from injury, showed he has a lot left in the tank running 13.19 to win his heat ahead of Phillip Lemonious (13.21) and Damion Thomas (13.27). Orlando Bennett (13.49) was also an automatic qualifier.

Andrew Riley (13.65) and Jordani Woodley (13.89) are also through to the finals.

Fedrick Dacres won the discus with 64.31m and Lamara Distin cleared 1.90 to win the Women’s High Jump.

 

 

 

 

 

 

After three consecutive second-place finishes, Danniel Thomas-Dodd got her second win of the season when she threw a season-best 19.26m at the American Track League meet in Tennessee on Sunday.

It was her first win and first mark over 19m since she threw 19.17m on April 10 in Miramar, Florida. In her three, previous outings she had marks of 18.46m, 18.91m and 18.46, respectively. In Tennessee, she got the better of a quality field of athletes like Jessica Ramsay of the USA, who threw 18.78m.

Raven Saunders put 18.50m for third.

Fourth-place was taken by young Jamaican thrower Lloydricia Cameron, who managed a best effort of 17.57m.

Meanwhile, Christopher Taylor, also produced a season-best in the 400m, clocking 45.67 to finish behind Steven Gardiner of the Bahamas who cruised to victory in 45.06.  Quintaveon Poole was third in 45.92.

Leah Nugent also produced a season-best 55.34 while chasing World Championship silver medalist Sydney McLaughlin. The second-fastest woman of all time over the distance clocked a world-leading 52.83 in her first race in the event this season.

Sage Watson of Canada was third in 56.04. Sparkle McKnight of Trinidad and Tobago also ran a season-best 56.06 for fourth.

The USA’s Andre Hudson ran 10.27 to win the 100m dash in which Jevaughn Minzie finished fourth in 10.41.

Saudi Arabia’s Abdullah Mohammed (10.32) and Canada’s Bismark Boateng (10.35) took the other podium spots.

 

Cricket West Indies (CWI) has announced that annual retainer contracts have been offered to all 13 members of the existing Senior Panel of Umpires for the new contract period April 1st 2021- March 31st 2022.

The significant reduction in regional cricket in the last contracting period, due to the impact of COVID-19, has resulted in no changes being made to the list of umpires to be offered contracts.

CWI invests annually in the panel of umpires due to their fundamental role in ensuring that the spirit and integrity of cricket is preserved and that the highest possible quality fair play is upheld on the field.  Investing in a broader pool of umpires who can be rewarded for their hard work and application in developing their skills is vital for the health of cricket at all levels.

CWI’s Director of Cricket Jimmy Adams said, “I am pleased that even in the midst of our financial constraints, CWI will be re-engaging our senior panel of umpires as we recognize and appreciate their important role within the game.  We all hope that there will be increasing amounts of cricket within the region in the months ahead to allow our best umpires to continue their ongoing development.”

The Senior Panel of Umpires being offered retainer contracts is as follows:

CWI’s Senior Panel of Umpires 2021/22: Zahid Bassarath,  Johnathan Blades,  Gregory Brathwaite,  Deighton Butler, Nigel Duguid, Patrick Gustard, Danesh Ramdhanie, Leslie Reifer,  Verdayne Smith, Christopher Taylor, Carl Tuckett, Jacqueline Williams and  Christopher Wright.

During the recent International Home Series between West Indies and Sri Lanka, for the first time, all match officials were of Caribbean origin, due to the ICC temporarily permitting the appointment of locally-based match officials from the Emirates Elite Panel of Match Officials and the Emirates ICC International Panel of Match Officials. This was due to the logistics challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. One very positive outcome was for Barbadian and West Indies Umpire, Gregory Brathwaite, to officiate in his first Test Match.

 

Canadian track star, Andre De Grasse, admits to being impressed with the rapid progress of young Jamaica quarter-miler Christopher Taylor.

These days, the athletes often cross paths as both train in Florida with well-respected coach Rana Reider.  Taylor recently opened his season with a quick 45.73 clocking to finish second in the men’s Indoor 400m at the World Athletics Tour in Fayetteville, Arkansas a few weeks ago.

The outing was the prodigy’s first 400m race since 2019, but he had also surprised many last year with a brisk 10.42 over 100m.  De Grasse would, however, not have been among those surprised by the high level of those recent performances.

“He very talented, very, very talented.  Sometimes I ask the coach to put me in a workout with him because he is very good for 300 workouts for me when I am preparing for the 200m,” De Grasse told SportsMax.tv’s The Commentators.

“He is very good.  He just ran the other day and I am really happy for him.  His problem the last couple of years is trying to stay fit and he is very healthy right now and feeling good,” he added.

“It was very impressive (recent run) especially for an indoor season, he’s never done it before, so by the time he comes outdoor he should be in good shape.  I’ve been watching him, he’s been in the group for a couple of years now but I think he is taking a lot of things more seriously.”

Listen to the rest of the interview from this week's The Commentators podcast below.

 
 

 

Omar McLeod was a winner in the 60m hurdles at the American Track League meeting in Arkansas earlier today but his win was among several standout performances from several Caribbean athletes, who produced personal best or season-best times.

The 2016 Olympic champion ran 7.53 while holding off the challenge of American Michael Dickson who crossed in 7.58. Trinidad and Tobago’s Ruebin Walters was third in 7.68.

In the women’s equivalent, Great Britain’s Tiffany Porter won in 7.95 just managing to hold off a fast-finishing Brittany Anderson, who was 0.02 behind in 7.97. Gabbi Cunningham was third in 8.08. Rushelle Burton returning to competition from injury was fourth in 8.20.

For the second week running Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare managed to hold off Christania Williams in the 60m dash. This time, however, the Nigerian ran a personal best of 7.10 after separating from the Jamaican who equalled her personal best of 7.14.

Teahna Daniels of the USA was third in a season-best 7.17.

The winner of the Women’s 400m was determined over two heats by time trial and Shamier Little was easily the fastest winning Heat One in a personal best 51.33. Shakima Wimbley also of the US took second after winning Heat Two in 52.12.

Jamaica’s Shian Salmon ran a personal best of 52.85 for second in Heat One but was third overall.

In the men's event, Michael Cherry of the USA won heat one in a personal best 45.24 for the win. Second and third were determined by a battle between Deon Lendore of Trinidad and Tobago and Christopher Taylor of Jamaica. Lendore emerged as the second-place finisher after winning Heat 2 in 46.08 to Taylor' 46.09, which was good enough for third overall.

Laquan Nairn jumped a personal best and national record 8.16m in the Men’s Long Jump but had to settle for second as the USA’s Marquis Dendy won the event with a world-leading 8.21m on his final jump of the competition.

Charles Brown of the USA was third with a jump of 7.81m.

 

 

 

Christopher Taylor says he is glad to have got the chance to prove himself to the world once more following his impressive indoor debut in Arkansas on Sunday.

Christopher Taylor and Christania Williams copped second-place finishes in the 400m and 60m races, respectively at the opening meet on the American Track League circuit in Fayetteville, Arkansas earlier today.

Andre Ewers, meanwhile, finished third in the men’s 60 dash that ended in a dominant win for American Trayvon Brommell.

Taylor, who was making his debut indoors, ran 45.73 in the 400m that was won impressively by American Fred Kerley in 45.03. Kerley said afterwards that he would have gone faster had he been pressed.

The 45.73, however, would have been an encouraging start for Taylor, who spent much of the past two seasons recovering from injury after he made the move to Florida to train with Rana Reider at Tumbleweed Track Club.

Travean Caldwell was third in 46.25.

Williams, the 2018 Commonwealth Games 100m silver medalist, ended up second in a blanket-finish with Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare who won in 7.17s. Williams’ 7.18 mirrored the time she ran in the preliminaries earlier. Kayla White was third in 7.20.

Ewers ran 6.74 in the preliminaries to advance along with Omar McLeod whose 6.73 made him the fastest Jamaican going into the finals. Neither of them was as impressive as Bromell, who ran 6.58 easing down as he made his way into the final.

In the final, he let it all hang out winning handsomely in 6.48. The rest of the field finished under a blanket with Nigeria’s Divine Oduduru given second in 6.65 with Ewers third in 6.67. McLeod was a further 0.03 seconds back in sixth.

Brittany Anderson, who set the U20 world record in the 100m hurdles in Finland in July 2019,  found the going at the senior level a little tougher today finishing fourth in the 60m hurdles.

Her time of 8.06s was the fastest for a Jamaican this year but Tiffany Porter (7.89), Christina Clemons (7.88), and, winner, Tonea Marshall (7.86) were that much faster.

 

Jamaica’s Christopher Taylor is set to make his indoor debut on Sunday as the American Track League gets underway this season, meet organizer Paul Doyle has confirmed.

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