Junior golfers Mattea Issa and Ryan Lue emerged as the top performers at the Jamaica Golf Association’s national senior trials. The event, which concluded on Sunday at the prestigious Half Moon Golf Course in Montego Bay, saw both youngsters outplay their senior counterparts to claim the top spots on the leaderboard.

Issa, a rising star in Jamaican golf, led the women's division from start to finish across the three-day event. She finished with a total score of 10 over par 226, with daily scores of 76, 73, and 77. This secured her a four-stroke victory over Emily Mayne, the 2022 winner and reigning national female golf champion. Mayne concluded the trials with scores of 81, 76, and 73, totaling 14 over par 230.

Issa's triumph was particularly commendable given the challenges she faced, including adverse weather conditions and a personal mishap. Reflecting on her performance, Issa said, “The conditions on the weekend were very tough. There was a lot of wind and rain and there was even a lightning delay on the second day.

“On the third day, while warming up, I had a little incident where I was hit in the face with one of my training aids and had to visit the emergency room before my tee time. Despite these challenges, I’m proud of my performance and happy to win back-to-back titles in 2023 and 2024.”

In the men's division, Lue finished with a total score of six over par 222 after rounds of 79, 75, and an exceptional four under par 68 on the final day. This final round score, possibly his best on local soil, secured him a four-stroke victory over Jack Stein, who posted a total of 226 after a one under par 71 in the last round.

Lue expressed his satisfaction with his performance, stating, “I feel like the trials went well. I am very happy with my performance, especially with my final round score. Winning the trials and the opportunity to represent Jamaica this summer in the Dominican Republic is very exciting.”

Several other golfers also made notable contributions, particularly on the final day. Rocco Lopez, who led on day one, finished joint third with Zandre Roye, both scoring 227.

 Roye, the current national golf champion, recovered from a challenging second round to post a one under par 71 on the final day. William Knibbs, the 2023 national champion, and Oshae Haye, the 2022 champion, also showed strong performances, finishing fifth and joint sixth, respectively.

Both Issa and Lue are now set to represent Jamaica at the Caribbean Junior Amateur Golf Championship, scheduled to be held in Jamaica in early July. They will also participate in the Caribbean Amateur Golf Championship later in July in the Dominican Republic, where their recent performances will have set high expectations.

Gregg Berhalter has said that the United States are ready for the Copa America following their 1-1 draw with Brazil on Wednesday. 

Berhalter's side concluded their preparations for the tournament with an improved display in Florida, having lost 5-1 to Colombia three days prior.

Many feared the worst as Real Madrid's Rodrygo gave the visitors an early advantage, but Christian Pulisic's second half free-kick was enough to share the spoils, as Matt Turner made 11 saves in the contest, the most by a USA keeper since Tim Howard in the 2014 World Cup. 

"We asked for teamwork and intensity," Berhalter said. "The way we framed it is two things that are totally in their control. It doesn't matter about the opponent, it doesn't matter about the field, the fans or anything.

"That's the type of effort that we saw today. The boys certainly did really well on that and that was good. We feel like we made a little step."

The USA kickstart their Copa America campaign on June 23 against Bolivia in Arlington, before taking on Panama and Uruguay in Group C. 

Berhalter believes the result against the five-time World Cup winners is a little step on the way to being successful against the better teams on the international stage. 

"It's not a huge step, but it's a little step to be able to play against an amazingly talented Brazil team and bend but not break," Berhalter added.

"And give them problems as well, push them as well. So for us, looking at it, we think it's a good end to a preparation camp when we're ready for Copa."

Sherfane Rutherford hit an unbeaten 68 – including a staggering 37 from the final two overs – as West Indies reached the Super-8 stage at the T20 World Cup with a 13-run victory over New Zealand.

The co-hosts looked to be on course for their first defeat of the tournament when they slipped to 22-4, Trent Boult finishing with a team-best 3-16 for the Black Caps.

Rutherford had little support and initially made slow progress, only to dial it up in the dying stages, smashing three maximums off Daryl Mitchell in the 19th over then hitting two fours and another six off Mitchell Santner in the 20th.

New Zealand's chase never really got going as their middle order collapsed, Windies paceman Alzarri Joseph finishing with figures of 4-19 and Gudakesh Motie going 3-25.

Joseph's delivery saw Glenn Phillips caught by Rovman Powell at long on for the innings' crucial wicket, the all-rounder hitting 40 off 33 balls as none of his team-mates managed above 26.

While West Indies retain a perfect record at the top of Group C, New Zealand are on the brink of an early exit. They must win their remaining matches against Uganda and Papua New Guinea and hope other results go their way to advance.

Data Debrief: Rutherford's rescue act

When West Indies found themselves teetering in Trinidad and Tobago, Rutherford bailed them out.

His 68 runs at number six represents the second-best score ever recorded by a batter coming in at six or lower at the T20 World Cup, after Cameron White managed 85 versus Sri Lanka in 2010.

The United States capped their Copa America preparations with a 1-1 draw against Brazil on Wednesday, with Christian Pulisic scoring a fine free-kick.

USA captain Pulisic drilled a low effort beyond Alisson 26 minutes in, after a mazy run ended with him being chopped down by Wolves midfielder Joao Gomes on the edge of the area.

A full-strength Brazil side had gone ahead nine minutes earlier when the lively Raphinha split the hosts' defence with a fine pass for Rodrygo, who beat Matt Turner at his near post.

Rodrygo went close with an acrobatic effort shortly after half-time, but neither side was able to find a second-half winner, primarily due to the performances of Alisson and Turner.

The Liverpool goalkeeper made a great stop to deny Pulisic shortly after the hour mark, and Turner responded by tipping Rodrygo's outside-of-the-boot effort to safety.

Vinicius Junior fired across goal and off-target deep into stoppage time as the Selecao were made to settle for a draw 12 days out from their Copa opener against Costa Rica. The USA open their campaign against Bolivia in Texas on June 22.

Data Debrief: Captain America strikes again

If the USA are to enjoy a successful Copa campaign on home soil, they will need Pulisic to be right at it after an encouraging first season with Milan.

He is developing a taste for scoring against CONMEBOL opponents, having now netted versus Bolivia, Brazil, Chile and Venezuela.

He is just the third American man to achieve that feat, after Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan.

Late replacement Colton Cowser belted a tiebreaking two-run homer in the eighth inning to lift the Baltimore Orioles to their season-best sixth straight win, 4-2 over the struggling Atlanta Braves on Wednesday night.

Cower entered as a defensive replacement in the top of the eighth and, in his first at-bat of the night, drilled a shot over the wall in right-center field to score Ryan Mountcastle, who singled. Michael Harris II nearly made a leaping catch at the wall with the ball just touching his glove.

The Orioles have outscored opponents 33-9 during the six-game streak, outhomering foes 11-3.

Cade Povich was masterful in his second career start, allowing five hits over six scoreless innings with no walks and six strikeouts.

Craig Kimbrel worked a perfect ninth for his 16th save in 19 chances. He has given up just one earned run and two hits in his last 12 appearances, spanning 11 innings.

Keegan Akin surrendered Matt Olson’s two-run homer in the top of the eighth, but those were the only runs for the Braves, who have lost five in a row for the first time since 2017.

Atlanta is 0 for 15 with runners in scoring position and has left 18 runners on in the first two games of this series.

 

Seager homers in return as Rangers hold on

Corey Seager hit a go-ahead, three-run homer against his former team in his return to the lineup and the Texas Rangers held on for a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Shohei Ohtani’s home run in the first inning off Jon Gray stood as the game’s only run until the fifth, when Leody Taveras singled with one out, stole second and Marcus Semien reached on an error by third baseman Cavan Biggio.

Seager sent Walker Buehler’s 3-2 pitch over the wall in right field for a 3-1 lead in his first game back at Dodger Stadium since leaving to sign a 10-year contract with the Rangers in December 2021.

Seager missed the past four games with a left hamstring injury.

The Dodgers nearly tied it in the ninth but Andy Pages ran through a stop sign and was thrown out at home as the potential tying run for the final out on Jason Heyward’s RBI double.

Biggio made his Dodgers debut after he was acquired from Toronto on Wednesday.

 

Abrams lifts streaking Nationals over Tigers

CJ Abrams homered and doubled and the Washington Nationals held on for their fifth consecutive win, 7-5 over the Detroit Tigers.

The Nationals have their first five-game winning streak since June 19-24, 2021. They haven’t won six in a row since an eight-game run from Sept. 23-29, 2019 – the year they won the World Series.

Jake Irvin allowed one run and six hits over six innings with one walk and five strikeouts. Kyle Finnegan gave up Riley Greene’s solo homer in the ninth but finished for his 19th save.

Matt Vierling also homered for the Tigers, who have lost five of six.

Jayson Tatum scored 31 points and Jaylen Brown added 30 as the Boston Celtics fended off the Dallas Mavericks’ furious rally for a 106-99 victory for a 3-0 lead in the NBA Finals on Wednesday night.

Brown finished with eight rebounds and eight assists and Derrick White had 16 points as Boston extended its franchise record with a 10th consecutive playoff win and moved to 7-0 on the road this postseason.

The Celtics can wrap up the series and win their 18th title to break a tie with the Lakers for most NBA championships with a victory Friday night in Dallas.

None of the previous 156 teams to face a 3-0 deficit has rallied to win an NBA playoff series.

Kristaps Porzingis was ruled out about two hours before the game because of a rare tendon injury in his lower left leg sustained in Game 2. But the Celtics improved to 10-1 in these playoffs without the 7-foot-2 Latvian.

Kyrie Irving scored 35 points for Dallas and Luka Dončić added 27 before he fouled out with 4:12 remaining.

The Celtics opened a 91-70 lead at the end of a 20-5 run early in the fourth quarter, but the Mavs answered with a 22-2 spurt to pull within 93-92 on Irving’s jumper with 3:37 left.

Brown made a layup and White hit a 3-pointer before Irving sank a pair of free throws. Tatum dunked and Brown drilled a long jumper sandwiched around Dereck Lively II’s dunk to put Boston up 102-98.

PJ Washington and Irving both missed 3s and Tatum’s two free throws with 15 seconds left sealed the win.

Irving’s personal losing streak against the Celtics – his former team – reached 13 games.

The Boston Celtics won't have Kristaps Porzingis for Game 3 of the NBA Finals against the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday because of a rare injury to his left leg.

The Celtics announced Tuesday that Porzingis suffered a torn medial retinaculum allowing dislocation of the posterior tibialis tendon.

The team described the injury as being rare, and said it is unrelated to a right calf strain that side-lined Porzingis for 10 games earlier in the play-offs.

The injury occurred with 3:27 to play in the third quarter of Sunday's 105-98 win over the Mavericks, which gave Boston a 2-0 lead.

Porzingis helped spark the Celtics in Thursday's 107-89 win in Game 1, tallying 11 points and two blocks in the first quarter in his first game since April 29.

He finished with 20 points on 8-of-13 shooting and six rebounds before recording 12 points and four boards in Game 2.

Porzingis spent 2 1/2 seasons with the Mavericks from 2019-22, and with this latest injury, still hasn't played a game in Dallas since being traded to the Washington Wizards in February 2022.

Former Milan and Italy great Gennaro Gattuso has completed a surprise move to Hadjuk Split, taking over as head coach in Croatia.

Gattuso, a World Cup winner with Italy in 2006, has signed a two-year deal with the Croatian giants.

The 46-year-old will be officially welcomed at Poljud next week after Split announced his appointment on Wednesday.

Gattuso's coaching career began as player-coach of his final club, Sion of the Swiss Super League, and he also had short spells in charge of Palermo and OFI Crete.

The former midfielder then led Pisa to Serie B promotion before taking charge of old club Milan and subsequently joining Napoli, where he won the Coppa Italia in 2020.

Short tenures followed with Fiorentina, Valencia and Marseille before his sacking from the Ligue 1 side in February.

Joe Root has no doubts over Jos Buttler's England captaincy, backing the white-ball skipper to continue despite T20 World Cup struggles.

Matthew Mott's side are on the brink of an early elimination this month, with their 20-over title defence seemingly crumbling without escaping the group stage.

England struggled before rain washed out their opener with Scotland, who are the favourites to progress after Australia overcame Buttler's side on Saturday.

The defending champions must beat Oman and Namibia, while needing Australia to overcome Scotland by a less-than-narrow margin to have any hopes of going through on net run-rate.

That has brought questions over Buttler's tenure as England captain, though Root placed his backing in the 33-year-old, a former international team-mate and good friend of his.

"Jos is one of my good friends," the England Test star said. "I think he's a brilliant captain, so I don't think there's any question.

"I think they'll be absolutely fine, they've got a wonderful squad of players. They know exactly what they need to do.

"When it's all laid out and they've got their backs to the wall, which they have in this situation now, is when they play their best cricket.

"It could really bring the best out of them, so I've got no worries whatsoever.

"If they go out and do what they all know that they're capable of doing, we'll be finding ourselves in the Super 8s and the back-end of the tournament where it really matters to play our best stuff."

England face Oman on Thursday before meeting Namibia on Saturday, when Scotland go against Australia later in the day, boasting the advantage of knowing what result is required to progress.

That is on the minds of Australian players, too, with bowler Josh Hazlewood weighing up the options of helping send England out of the competition.

England coach Mott hopes the Australia quick's comments were in jest, though matters could be out of his side's hands come the weekend in the United States and West Indies.

England have started to plan for life after Gareth Southgate but Football Association executive Mark Bullingham insists no approach has been made for the manager, nor has his future been decided.

The Three Lions boss raised questions over his future after German media outlet BILD published an interview this week from Southgate, who suggested Euro 2024 this month is his last chance with England.

Manchester United were reportedly interested in the 53-year-old as well before reaffirming their commitment to under-fire manager Erik ten Hag.

As the European Championship awaits in Germany, Bullingham sought to ease any fears over the future of Southgate, though reiterated the FA has already thought through a succession plan.

"Gareth has been really, really clear that he wants to talk about that after the tournament," Bullingham said.

"And I don't want to provide any distraction for him and the team, and I want to respect the fact that he wants to talk about the future after the tournament.

 "I've seen some things about, 'Have we got a plan, haven't we?' Any organisation has a succession plan in place for their top employees, and we are no different to that.

"A succession plan normally includes everything from what you do for the short-term cover, through to a process you follow, through to [drawing up] a candidate pool. We have that for all our top employees."

Bullingham also assured that Southgate's future will not be dictated by success at Euro 2024, with the manager's contract set to expire in December.

"[The team] could go further but be playing poorly or have a really unlucky result where you get a couple of red cards and hit the woodwork three times," the FA chief added.

"I think setting an arbitrary figure isn't the right way to go. I think we step back and look at everything after the tournament."

In a staunch defence of Southgate, Bullingham lauded the job the former England international has done, guiding the Three Lions to the Euro 2020 final and World Cup semi-finals in 2018.

"I would say I think the world of Gareth, I think he has done a phenomenal job," Bullingham said.

"I think he has transformed the fortunes of our team, and that's not just off the pitch, and you can see the culture, but also the performances on the pitch.

"Since 1966, he has won about half of our knockout games, which is a measure we really use, so we value him massively."

Should Southgate leave, Bullingham remains open to bringing in another homegrown talent to manage England.

"We have two senior coaches," he continued. "One of them is English, one of them [England women's boss Sarina Wiegman] is not.

"Any federation in the world would always want to have a pool of top homegrown talent playing and managing at any time."

Joshua Zirkzee is reportedly drawing interest from Milan, Juventus and Manchester United, and will have the chance to further his stock after a late call-up for the Netherlands at Euro 2024.

Oranje boss Ronald Koeman has lost Frenkie de Jong and Teun Koopmeiners, as well as midfielder Marten de Roon, in the build-up to the tournament in Germany.

Koeman criticised former club Barcelona for their handling of the injured De Jong before Koopmeiners' absence was also confirmed this week in another blow for the Netherlands.

Ajax forward Brian Brobbey is another said to be struggling for fitness, forcing the Dutch to act swiftly with reinforcements.

Zirkzee's inclusion was confirmed on Wednesday as the Netherlands added the striker to their international camp ahead of their tournament opener against Poland on Sunday.

The 23-year-old does not have a single senior cap under his belt for the Netherlands, but did score seven goals in 19 caps for the Under-21 side.

Zirkzee found the net 12 times in 37 appearances for Bologna in the 2023-24 campaign as the Serie A side qualified for next season's Champions League.

That form has reportedly drawn interest from Erik ten Hag's Man Utd, Juventus – who appointed Thiago Motta as their new head coach on Wednesday – and Milan.

Ian Maatsen, who reached the Champions League final with Borussia Dortmund this year, is the other man brought in for the Netherlands to fill the void left by De Jong and Koopmeiners.

The Netherlands also face Austria and France in Group D at Euro 2024, where Germany open the tournament against Scotland on Friday.

Kylian Mbappe hopes to avoid any hangover from World Cup disappointment as the France forward searches for his elusive final international crown at Euro 2024.

The Real Madrid-bound forward scored a hat-trick in the final of FIFA's global tournament in 2022, though that was not enough to stop Argentina from winning on penalties in Saudi Arabia.

Another major tournament is on the horizon as the European Championship awaits in Germany, where Didier Deschamps' side rank as the favourites alongside Gareth Southgate's England.

Euros success is the only glory missing from Mbappe's glittering resume, having won the World Cup in 2018 and the Nations League as well, though the 25-year-old hopes to end that this time around.

The former Paris Saint-Germain told CNN Sport: "I want to win the Euros. I have to be honest. I won the World Cup. I won the Nations League.

"That's the only one that missed me with the national team after I did everything with the national team. I really want to win this.

"My first competition as captain, so it's really important for me and it's always important for the country and we want them to be proud of us.

"[It's] another opportunity to write the history of my country."

Mbappe endured a woeful tournament at Euro 2020, failing to score from chances amounting to 1.7 xG in four games, before missing the vital penalty as France lost to Switzerland in a last-16 shoot-out.

Coming into this tournament on the back of a 44-goal season with PSG and with his long-term future decided, few would back a repeat from Madrid's newest Galactico. 

France open their group-stage campaign against Austria on Monday before facing the Netherlands and Austria in a testing pool.

Mbappe believes Les Bleus can take the learnings from the last World Cup into their next quest for the European crown.

"I think we have to move forward," the world-class forward added. "Of course, we were hurt, to see that you're close to something...

"Close to the back-to-back. Something amazing. Something historic. Everybody loved the game except for us.

"We didn't like that, but it's part of the game. Now, when I watch the video of the game, I watch with a smile because it's part of the history and we know what we have to do if we go again in the final.

"We have to play all the game and have no reaction."

Italy great Alessandro Nesta has been appointed as the new head coach of Monza.

The 48-year-old comes in as the successor to Raffaele Palladino, who switched Monza for Fiorentina last week.

Nesta, a World Cup winner in 2006, has enjoyed a modest managerial career compared to his remarkable playing days.

The former defender will embark on his first Serie A season as a coach after spells with Perugia, Frosinone and Reggiana.

Nesta led promoted Reggiana to an 11th-place finish in Italy's second tier and has now resolved his contract issues with the club in order to take over at Monza.

His new club finished 12th last season in what was just their second campaign in Serie A.

World golf remains split on the divide between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, yet United States Golf Association chief executive Mike Whan hopes to create a pathway for the breakaway players at the U.S. Open.

No permanent deal appears on the cards in the near future as the PGA and Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF), which funds the LIV circuit, held further talks last week.

Tiger Woods described the meeting as "productive" but just 12 LIV players will be in action when the U.S. Open starts on Thursday at Pinehurst.

Jon Rahm would have been the 13th if not for his withdrawal due to a troublesome foot injury as LIV representation remains sparse at golf's major events.

Whan wants to change the dynamic between the two competitions, however.

"I think we are serious about that," USGA chief Whan said when asked about creating a link between LIV and the U.S. Open. 

"Exactly what that looks like, I'm not just being coy, we haven't done that yet.

"I also think, if I'm being perfectly honest with you, we've always felt like for the last year and a half that we're always three months away from kind of understanding what the new structure is going to look like.

"So before we kind of react, what is LIV going to be, what's the PGA Tour? We always felt like we were just about to know that answer, so let's figure that out.

"Now, I think the reason we're being more vocal about looking at that [pathway] for next year is maybe this is the new world order, and if that's the case we wanted to take a look at that.

"I think it's feasible. I don't think it's a huge pathway, but we do offer other pathways through DP World Tour or Korn Ferry Tour, so we know that there's an option to get there."

Past U.S. Open champions Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau and Martin Kaymer are among the LIV golfers to feature at this week's major.

LIV rookies Dean Burmester, David Puig and Eugenio Chacarra all made the field through final qualifying, while veteran Sergio Garcia was added to the list of players on Monday.

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