SAMMY CRITICAL The meeting was also attended by current men’s T20 captain Darren Sammy, who criticised the board following the final of the T20 World Cup in India earlier this month. The WICB said that only recently, it took the decision to review all governance reports to determine if there were relevant parts that could still be implemented. The Patterson Report, authored by former Jamaica Prime Minister PJ Patterson, was produced in 2007, but its main recommendation of a Council of Stakeholders, comprising 23 members, has been ignored by the WICB. “The one recommendation that has not been favoured by the current, or the previous board, is the adding of another layer to the existing body,” the board said. “That has been the bane of contention in recent times, with a few groups calling for the dissolution of the board.” Despite the heavy criticism it received, the board maintained it had performed well. “The board, so far, has lived up to its promises, and while that is being done ‘let’s trust the process’.” ST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC): Regional governing body, the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), has once again pushed back on growing calls for its dissolution, claiming yesterday that it had “lived up to its promises” and urging the region to “trust the process”. Referring to “small groups” that were “clamouring for its dissolution”, the board, in a statement, defended its stewardship, repeating the argument that it had already implemented 90 per cent of all recommendations from the various commissioned governance reports. The fact that it had opted not to restructure along the lines suggested by the Patterson Report was not enough reason to justify dissolution, the Dave Cameron-led WICB contended. Further, the board pointed to the Under-19 team and the senior men’s and women’s Twenty20 World Cup teams and said their recent success was proof of the board’s efficiency. “In under 100 days since the start of 2016, three teams from the West Indies in two formats won three world titles,” the WICB said. “That accomplishment has come as part of the high-performance programme implemented just over two years ago. That there are small groups clamouring for the board’s dissolution is reason to ask. What more could a region want? “The acceptance of an average of 90 per cent of all the commissioned reports received have been implemented, minus adding another layer of bureaucracy cannot justify calling for the board to be dissolved. “Instead, the small groups should consider, among other things, promises made by governments to contribute to the growth of cricket by hosting matches or international series; continuing to facilitate development that aids in the growth of the sport; creating a more enabling environment for movement around the region; revitalising cricket in the schools across the region; (and) assisting in the setting up of territorial academies.” The board statement comes one day after several West Indies legends, including Sir Garry Sobers, Sir Wes Hall, Sir Vivian Richards, and Sir Andy Roberts issued a joint statement backing the CARICOM Governance Panel recommendation for the dissolution of the WICB and also calling for the immediate resignation of the board of directors. Outstanding former players Deryck Murray, Charlie Griffith, and Desmond Haynes were also among the group, which met in Grenada last week to discuss the matter. The legends also met with Grenada’s Prime Minister, Dr Keith Mitchell, the chairman of CARICOM’s subcommittee on cricket, who has been at forefront of the push for the WICB to be restructured.
Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan is already a star even before stepping into Bollywood. The star kid has always managed to grab eyeballs through his pictures and videos he posts on his Instagram account. Aryan has shared a video of him doing a handstand on his hoverboard on Instagram and wrote, ” I guess I read the manual wrong..(sic)” One of the fan clubs of Shah Rukh Khan has also shared the video on Instagram. Aryan has a huge fan following on Instagram and keeps updating his followers with his latest pictures. Earlier, Aryan has shared a video of his gymnastic skills which went viral on the internet. From playing Rugby to gymnastics, it seems like Aryan is fond of sports and his father Shah Rukh Khan too wants his kids to be connected to the field of sports.Earlier, there were reports of Aryan Khan’s debut in Bollywood. But Shah Rukh Khan doesn’t want him to enter the industry right now. The Diwale actor had earlier said, “He is very young right now. He needs to complete his studies first. Abhi usko padh lene toh do. After that, he will make his own career choices. As of now, there are no plans of him getting launched in the industry.”On the work front, Shah Rukh Khan will next be seen in Fan and Raees. read more
Robin Uthappa made a mockery of Rising Pune Supergiant’s bowling attack to anchor Kolkata Knight Riders closer towards a play-off berth with a convincing seven-wicket win in their IPL 2017 encounter on Wednesday.The right-hander struck a match-winning 87 off just 47 balls and was ably supported by skipper Gautam Gambhir, who made 62 off 46 deliveries, as the two-time champions regained their spot in top of the standings with six wins from eight games.While Uthappa decorated his knock with seven boundaries and six hits over the fence, Gambhir’s innings was laced with six fours and one six.The duo stitched 158 runs off just 85 balls for the second wicket to help KKR chase down the 183-run target with 11 balls to spare.Uthappa, who won the man-of-the-match, said he has settled down with his technique and feeling much more confident.”I have always been strong. I said to somebody a few weeks ago that I have settled down with my technique. I feel confident and I am enjoying myself out there. It is very important to respect the momentum that we have created for ourselves,” Uthappa said.Chasing the target, Sunil Narine (15 off 9 balls) once again got KKR off to a brisk start before he was run out in the third over.Then Uthappa and Gambhir joined hands and took control off the chase with a bit of luck on their favour.Uthappa was lucky to have survived a close LBW call when he was yet to open his account and later when Jaydev Unadkat made a mess of a chance at deep midwicket off Imran Tahir’s bowling with the batsman on 12.advertisementThe stylish right-hander grabbed the opportunities with both hands and thereafter opened his arms to struck boundaries and sixes at will.Uthappa did not spare a single Pune bowler with young Washington Sundar and Unadkat facing the maximum wrath. Uthappa brought up his half-century in just 26 balls in the 11th over.Commenting on his wicket-keeping skills, Uthappa said he can get better with the gloves. He also praised MS Dhoni for setting the standards behind the wicket.”I can get better with the gloves. I am enjoying it though. MS has set the benchmark for all the Indians. Trying to get there, slowly but surely,” he said. read more
ROME (AP) — Center back Kostas Manolas has transferred from Roma to Napoli in a deal worth 36 million euros ($40 million) that should boost the southern club’s Serie A title credentials.Roma announced the transfer on Sunday.The 28-year-old Manolas joins Kalidou Koulibaly in what could become one of the top center back pairings in the Italian league.Napoli hasn’t won Serie A since Diego Maradona led the club to its only two titles in 1987 and 1990 but coach Carlo Ancelotti is bolstering his squad in his second season with the Partenopei.Manolas replaces Raul Albiol, who is reportedly moving to Villarreal.Manolas’ crowning achievement with Roma came when he scored the decisive goal against Barcelona to send Roma to the Champions League semifinals in 2018.Manolas played five seasons with Roma after starting his career in his native Greece.___TweetPinShare0 Shares read more
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Xavi says Man City star Sterling can replace Messiby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveBarcelona legend Xavi says Manchester City star Raheem Sterling can replace Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as the world’s best.The England international has developed into a world-class talent under City boss Pep Guardiola.Sterling already has six goals this term and Xavi expects him to continue progressing his game.Xavi told The Mirror: “Messi and Ronaldo have dominated the best-player-in-the-world awards for so many years now, it’s hard to remember a time before them.”Messi is the best ever for me – and even though they’re both still playing at a very high level – there will come the day not so long away when somebody else must step into those shoes.”You look at young players who can be crowned the future best in the world and you still think of Neymar, Mbappe, Salah, and of course Sterling. I look at the moment – and Sterling is winning that race.” read more
Some things are more important than football, and somebody’s personal well-being belongs at the top of that list. Despite how much you may think you know about a person, it’s impossible to know what kind of battles they’re fighting in their own heads each and every day, struggles too painful to share. So on Sunday, when Washington wide receiver Isaiah Renfro courageously took to Twitter to explain the battles he’s been fighting over the past year, the fact that he has decided to step away from football should be the last thing you take from his announcement. Yes – that was one of the reasons for it, but it was so much more than that; it was a young man finding enough strength to open up and be true to himself, true to others. It was what he believes to be a step in the right direction. Been debating on posting this but this is me taking steps in the right direction to becoming myself again.. pic.twitter.com/ptE1k9oKKJ— Isaiah Woods-Renfro (@WaveGodZay) May 29, 2016Here’s the message he posted to Twitter Sunday night. Renfro will obviously be missed on the football field, but I think it’s safe to say he’ll be supported in any way necessary through this difficult time. read more
Colombo: The newly-appointed chief of the Sri Lankan Army has dismissed the allegations of human rights abuses during the brutal civil war with the LTTE, describing the military actions as a “humanitarian operation.” Lt Gen Shavendra Silva was named as the new Army Commander by President Maithripala Sirisena last week, evoking strong criticism from the US and the minority Tamils. Silva headed the Army’s 58th Division in the final battle against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels in 2009 and his brigade was accused of attacking civilians, hospitals and stopping humanitarian supplies to trapped Tamil civilians. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US His name was mentioned in the resolution passed by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in 2013, alleging rights abuses by the Sri Lankan Army. There were no war crimes committed. What we did was a humanitarian operation to free people from a group of terrorists , Silva told reporters in Kandy on Sunday. Silva was treated as a war hero for his contributions to ending the over three decades old separatist conflict. The Tamil civilians appreciated our action to free them from terrorists, he said, adding that he only did his job as a soldier. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls Those (Tamils) were our own people so we had a duty to protect them. The civilians know how well we protected them, Silva added. Critics say Silva’s appointment as the Army chief may strain Sri Lanka’s cooperation in UN Peacekeeping operations and the defence cooperation between the US and Sri Lanka. Besides the US, Canadian and European Union embassies too have expressed concern over Silva’s appointment as the army chief. There is a rule of natural justice, Silva said, referring to international allegations of war crimes against the Sri Lankan troops. read more
The Mets, who already leaned heavily on their pitchers — only the Yankees and Athletics got a higher share of their total WAR from pitchers in 2016 — are in line to become even more pitcher-reliant this offseason, as several of their fielders enter the free-agent market. Sure, ageless wonder Bartolo Colón has departed for the Atlanta Braves, but New York’s biggest free-agent questions were always going to involve position players.One of those questions was answered Monday, when Neil Walker accepted the Mets’ qualifying offer, saving New York the headache of trying to fill a hole at the keystone. But they still have to account for the possible loss of outfielder Yoenis Céspedes, who’s projected for 3.0 WAR in 2017. Given the gap in the lineup that losing his bat would leave, there’s a case to be made that the Mets should just pony up whatever it takes to re-sign Céspedes. But “whatever it takes” will probably amount to quite a bit of money in this year’s weak free-agent class, and there are other, cheaper options available: Dexter Fowler (2.3), Carlos Gómez (2.1) and Ian Desmond (1.5) stand out. Look for the Mets to go that way.Speaking of Gómez and Desmond, they’re part of what could be a mass exodus from Texas, as they join first baseman Mitch Moreland (0.8), designated hitter Carlos Beltrán (0.4), and starting pitchers Derek Holland (1.8) and Colby Lewis (1.1) in free agency. Sorting it all out is going to be a tough winter assignment for Rangers GM Jon Daniels.Signing Mike Napoli (0.9) for another Texas tour of duty or going slightly up-market for Edwin Encarnación (2.3) would go a long way toward replacing Moreland and Beltran (both of whom could, of course, come back), and it’s not unreasonable to expect either Desmond or Gómez, both of whom can play center field, to return. The bigger problem is in the rotation, where Holland and Lewis had contributed nearly 30 percent of Texas’s rotational WAR since 2010. The Rangers don’t have any obvious internal options to step into those spots, and the free-agent market looks thin aside from Rich Hill (2.9), who’ll probably get better options elsewhere. A trade may be in the offing.North of the border, the Blue Jays have just over nine wins coming off their roster, headlined by the aforementioned Encarnación, plus longtime star José Bautista (2.9), and the recently departed — also to Atlanta! — R.A. Dickey (2.0), among others. Some of Dickey’s production can be replaced with relative ease, but signing Kendrys Morales (0.9) and Cuban superstar Lourdes Gurriel Jr.4Who wasn’t projected by Fangraphs. significantly lowered the odds that either Encarnación or Bautista will return to the Blue Jays next year. Of the two, Bautista is the most likely to come back — at 36, he doesn’t have much upside left, he had a down season last year, and he is clearly comfortable in Toronto. No matter what happens, this offseason has already done much to reshape the Jays’ talented roster.Finally, the Los Angeles Dodgers have a league-high 12.5 projected wins rolling off their roster, mainly in Justin Turner (3.7), Rich Hill (2.9), Josh Reddick (2.1), and Kenley Jansen (1.5). Jansen, a lights-out reliever, will probably get the most press this offseason, but L.A.’s shake-ups in the field — which have already included trading away Howie Kendrick and Carlos Ruiz — will be the most interesting to watch.The Dodgers seem likely to retain at least one of their four big free agents, but they probably won’t keep all four. That’ll mean some tough choices: L.A. can probably survive Reddick leaving, but there aren’t many enticing options available if Turner ends up packing his bags. A trade with the Tampa Bay Rays for Evan Longoria has been bandied about by the Twitter cognoscenti, but that’ll cost L.A. a haul in terms of both prospects and dollars, if the Rays’ past dealmaking habits — and complicated relationship with the current Dodgers’ front office — is any indication. The Dodgers have enough smarts, money and talent to contend for years to come; they’ll need all three to get this offseason right.There are limits to thinking about the offseason purely in terms of projected free-agent WAR, to be sure. For one thing, projection systems — even the very best — have flaws. For another, teams often have a better sense of their own departing free agents’ skill sets — and likelihood of performance decline — than anyone else, inside or outside the industry, so they may be basing their free-agency decisions on information that projection systems don’t have. And, more broadly, trying to evaluate whole offseasons through the lens of free agency alone misses the extreme impact that trades — and normal player development and growth — will have on the state of the league in 2017. But knowing how the projections treat every club’s outgoing free agents can give us a better sense of how the offseason will play out for each team, whether they spent 2016 at the top of the heap or staring up from the basement. In Major League Baseball, just about the only thing harder than getting to the top is staying there. In that respect, this year is no different than any other. Each of the four teams projected to lose the most production in free agency this winter — the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Toronto Blue Jays, the Texas Rangers and the New York Mets — were playoff teams in 2016, and each of them must now move with speed and smarts to shore up their position among baseball’s elite.To some extent, it makes sense for top free-agent talent to be clustered in top teams: While the average turnover rate for MLB rosters is somewhere around 30 percent, playoff teams tend to have — big shocker here — better players than non-playoff teams, so 30 percent of a playoff team’s roster1Even if turnover is distributed unevenly among players with different amounts of service time, as this Ben Lindbergh piece suggests it generally is. is likely to be a more capable bunch than 30 percent of, say, the Atlanta Braves’ roster.2Bartolo Colon’s recent arrival notwithstanding.Still, by combining a list of major-league free agents compiled by Spotrac with Fangraphs’ Steamer projections for each player’s wins above replacement next year,3We downloaded Fangraphs’ list of players and their projected WAR on November 12, 2016. Numbers are accurate as of that date. Some players may not appear in Fangraphs’ data set, and we excluded the 24 free agents who have not played in the big leagues in the last two years and therefore were not projected by Fangraphs’ system. it’s possible to get a rough sense of which teams will have their work cut out for them on the free-agency front. These numbers were calculated going into free agency, so they don’t reflect the first few signings of the offseason. They do, however, accurately reflect the wide range of challenges teams faced at the outset of the main period of the offseason. read more