The Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) has delivered record value for the Caribbean during the 2020 season, with the tourist boards across the region receiving US$258million in media exposure.

Social media manager Brave Bison has announced a partnership with Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Jamaica sprinter Kevona Davis finished in third position, in heat 9 of the 200m time-final, at the Tyson Invitational in Arkansas on Saturday.

In her first year from high school, out of Jamaica, the Texas Longhorn clocked 23.47 to finish behind LSU’s Symone Mason and Florida’s Talitha Diggs who crossed the line first in a personal best of 22.94.

Also in action was St Lucian, Julien Alfred, who also competes for the Longhorns.  Alfred finished in second place after competing in heat 6 where she crossed the line in 23.53.  The event was won by Arkansas's Jada Baylark who took top spot in 23.49.  Stacy-Ann Williams took third place in 23.66.  Jamaica’s Kemba Wilson of Oregon was also listed to compete in the heat but did not face the starter.

The fastest time of the event was clocked by Texas’s Kynnedy Flannel, who took heat 10 in a personal best 22.73, finishing behind her was Alabama’s Tamara Clarke, who was second in 22.89, a season’s best. 

In men’s action, Oregon’s Xavier Nairne, another Jamaican, clocked a personal best 21.14 to win heat 4 of the men’s 200m.  Nairne finished ahead of teammate Jacoby Mcnamara and Texas’ Caleb Hulbin.  Philip Lemonius of Arkansas also took top spot after claiming heat 1.

Darren Sammy is looking to enjoy the sweet smell of success in the near future following the signing of a new licensing agreement with Asgharali, a Bahrain-based fragrance company that has been in operation for more than 100 years.

The West Indies does not lack talent in cricket but a lot more is needed if the team is to rise from the doldrums to become a respected force once more.

These sentiments were expressed by Head Coach Phil Simmons and White-Ball Captain Kieron Pollard in the aftermath of another losing series, this time in New Zealand where the West Indies lost the T20 series and Test series by 2-0 margins.

Since then, debate has swirled around the failings of the West Indies and what, if anything, can be done to bring about a reversal of fortunes.

Simmons and Pollard are of the view that a lot needs to be done administratively and by the players, if things are to change for the better.

“We are never, in the Caribbean, wanting for talent,” Simmons said in a video from CWI posted on Youtube on Wednesday.

“But now is a time for us to realize that all the talent we have hasn’t taken us anywhere and that there are some things that have to go with the talent. “There’s teaching, there’s understanding, there’s learning how to play different games in all different formats.

“There is a lot to be done still. We have to put together everything else in the Caribbean that goes with the talent to make it a successful unit again.”

Pollard, one of the best T20 players in the world and who has played with in some of the best T20 leagues across the globe, while agreeing with the head coach, opined that until the structures can be put in place for the West Indies to make full use of the talent, the current crop of players need to shoulder a greater share of responsibility. This, he said, would likely inspire the administrators to do more.

“We talk about fixing cricket and wanting to take it forward but I think as individuals, the hard work needs to be put in and I just believe that sometimes you look at it, it needs to start at the administration level,” Pollard said.

“In this case, I think we can be the driving force on the field, the group of guys we have at present, we can continue to show that we have the drive and the determination and desire to go forward and push forward, and also put ourselves in uncomfortable positions in order for this vehicle to go forward then it would transcend onto the administration and they will realize that we need to pull our socks up.

“When you look at it, we are not wanting for talent. Talent, pound for pound, we are always there and sometimes a lot better than we have seen around the world but what they have around the world is structure. What they have is people investing in the cricket, investing in themselves.”

Pollard believes the West Indies have remained in the doldrums for a long time because of a willingness to accept mediocrity suggesting that, unfortunately, it part of Caribbean culture.

He said with a renewed effort to move forward, hopefully the effort will attract the type of investment needed in regional cricket.

“There is still a long way to go in terms of playing in proper facilities. Pitches in the Caribbean, in all honesty, are not at a great standard. Things that we call world class, when you go away you see world class and those are the things we need to see as individuals and from an administration point of view.”

The Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) has won the award for “Best Use of Social Media” from the prestigious International Sports Convention (ISC) for the league’s social media and content strategy during 2020 at the annual International Sports Awards.

The tournament took place between 18 August and 10 September 2020, and as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic it was played behind closed doors. Because of this, the use of social media to keep fans engaged was more important than ever.  CPL achieved great results, with over one million new followers added and over 300 million social media video views achieved during the tournament period alone.

From the point that the lockdowns started earlier in 2020 Hero CPL worked tirelessly to keep fans entertained. From broadcasting archive matches with new commentary from the likes of Tom Moody and Ian Bishop, to arranging for the player draft to be done remotely with a world-class punditry panel, keeping fans entertained and engaged was at the centre of the tournament’s thinking.

During the tournament itself, live CPL games were broadcast into 77 countries on Facebook and YouTube as well as sending out highlights clips worldwide. The tournament also worked with broadcast partners Sunset+Vine to create fun and engaging content so fans could learn what it was like inside the tournament’s bio-secure bubble.  Hero CPL also launched the “Life Stories” films on the tournament’s social media channels. These beautifully made films focused on the lives of up and coming Caribbean cricketers and won plaudits from around the world.

Hero CPL has also started sharing content on a number of new social media channels such as TikTok, Twitch, Triller and Instagram Reels.

The Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) saw an incredible 67 per cent increase in Television, Streaming and Digital viewership in 2020, reaching 523.5million viewers and passing half a billion for the first time in the tournament’s history.

Visionary founder, Sherneil Charlery, is at the heart of a fledgling initiative that it is hoped will blossom to produce top-class female athletes for the tiny island of St Lucia in the next few years.

More importantly, however, ‘Supporting Girls in Sports’ has targeted bringing hope and knowledge to underprivileged young girls, hoping to find a way to rise out of poverty through sports.

If Charlery could choose just one Jamaican athlete to help with the organisation’s ‘Adopt A Girl’ initiative, she admits it would be difficult.  Jamaica is renowned through the Caribbean and the perhaps the world for producing top-class athletes.

In the end, she settled on Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Khadija Shaw. “Our current group of girls is involved in football and track and field. I would choose Fraser-Pryce and Shaw, not only because they play the same sports as our girls, but because they share the same stories. Like them, our girls come from single-parent homes or are raised in violent communities,” Charely explained.

“Seeing people who were able to succeed, despite the obstacles they faced, would inspire our girls to continue giving out their best.”

The ‘Adopt A Girl’ initiative aims to assist underprivileged female athletes (11- 14 years old) who are unable to afford their sporting expenses, such as club fees, equipment, and uniform. Additionally, the girls are paired with an advisor (an older member of the organisation) who will mentor and help them balance school, sports, and their personal lives.

It’s easy for an up and coming athlete to spot an internationally acclaimed Jamaican athlete to identify with.  The list is long and varied. Take Elaine Thompson-Herah for instance. When asked what motivates her, she told Dalton Myers on the August 31st’s episode of the Drive Phase, “I remember when I was growing up, I was looking at Veronica Campbell-Brown, Merlene Ottey and they motivated me to work hard and reach where I’m at,” she said.

The young girls can also look for inspiration further home.  A recent SportsMax.tv article In Honour of Levern Spencer spoke about the accomplishments of the great St Lucian athlete.  The article pointed to Spencer as a role model and pointed out that she was the best St. Lucia has ever produced, adding that “the next generation of St Lucian athletes have a marker to chase.”

The ‘Supporting Girls in Sports’ organisation wishes to expand the initiative to other Caribbean islands in the next five years, but in the meantime, their ‘Adopt A Girl’ program, which has helped seven girls to date, is already ensuring St. Lucia has a brighter future in athletics. 

Please share your thoughts on Twitter (@SportsMax_Carib) or in the comments section on Facebook (@SportsMax). Don’t forget to use #IAmNotAFan. Until next time!

There has to be something said for being the best your country has ever produced.

For every personal milestone to be considered a ground-breaking moment for your land and for every step up the international ladder to be treated as a moment for major celebration are feats worthy of being honoured.

St Lucian high jumper Levern Spencer has had to deal with the expectations and thankfully admiration that comes with being her country’s best and often only hope when it comes to the sport of track and field.

At 36 years old, she is no doubt wrapping up what has been a noteworthy career and one that nobody else in her country can boast.

In 2018, Spencer won St Lucia’s biggest ever title, Gold at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.

She returned to Castries to a hero’s welcome, one reminiscent of those winning World and Olympic titles in other countries, such was the significance of what she had achieved, 56 years after St Lucia first graced the Commonwealth stage in Perth 1962.

“This is all I have sought to do for all my professional career,” she said after being taken amidst fanfare in a motorcade to Castries.

She explained that her life’s dream had been, “to place St Lucia on top of the world, and show, that despite our size, we can soar to great heights.”

St Lucia wasn’t exactly on top of the world, but in that moment it must have felt like it, since it was the highest they had ever been.

Spencer had given her island of just under two hundred thousand people, a taste of international glory three years prior when she won Gold at the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada.

It is important to point out that Spencer’s two biggest titles came after the age of 30 but her impact on St Lucia’s athletics started when she was just 17 years old.

In 2001, at the IAAF World Youth Championships in Debrecen Hungary, Spencer leapt 1.81 metres to secure the bronze medal.

It remains their only medal at the event.

She dominated at the Central America and Caribbean, CAC, track and field Championships, winning the high jump on all six occasions she participated.

At the CAC Games, she won 3 of the 4 times, including at the 2018 edition in Barranquilla, Colombia.

She successfully defended her Pan Am Games title in 2019 and has also won two Commonwealth Games bronze medals to go with the 2018 Gold.

Her story is indeed one of perseverance which has culminated in triumph.

Despite all that however, Spencer and maybe St Lucia would be, if only a little, disappointed that she has not been able to cop a medal at the Olympic Games or senior World Championships.

At the Rio 2016 Olympics, she had her best shot, having finally reached a final.

She soared to a commendable 1.93 metres but it wasn’t enough as she had to settle for 6th.

And while she would have been disappointed, it was the best St Lucia had ever done at the Games and for today’s story that is the most important take-away.

And so, as Levern contemplates whether to give it one or two more attempts in the coming years, we say well done for what has already been achieved.

The way is paved and the next generation of St Lucian athletes have a marker for which to chase.

Daren Sammy will return as captain of the St. Lucia Zouks for the 2020 season.

The Caribbean Premier League is holding to its intended start date of August 19 amid concerns over the pandemic that has so far seen most sporting activities shut down. For now, they say, the season will proceed as planned.

The Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) will once again work with Cricket West Indies (CWI) to ensure that the best young players from across the region will be in CPL squads during the tournament, as well as ensuring that these talented youngsters will be given game time.

Kieran Powell and Amir Jangoo followed up a strong bowling performance led by West Indies pacer Alzarri Joseph to put Leeward Islands Hurricanes in a strong position against Windward Islands Volcanoes in their rain-marred, day/night contest at Gros Islet.

 The 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) had an economic impact of over US$136 million, a record for the T20 league since its inception in 2013, the CPL has announced.

Nathan Ferrari and Dudley O'Shaughnessy will comprise a two-member boxing team from St Lucia set to contest the 2019 Caribbean Boxing Championships, which begins on Monday, December 9, in Trinidad and Tobago.

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