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Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz got off to a tough start to the FIFA Women’s World, following a 3-0 humbling at the hands of top 10-ranked team Brazil, at the Stade des Alpes on Sunday.

Despite the absence of many-time FIFA Women's World Player of the Year Marta, the South Americans proved to have too much firepower for the World Cup debutantes.  The experienced Cristiane Rozeira’s, who netted a hat-trick, proved to be a more than an adequate deputy.

The Brazilians entered the game on the back of a nine-game winless streak but any jitters they may have felt were settled early on.  Rozeira gave the South Americans the lead in the 15-minute with a well-timed header that flew wide of Jamaica custodian Sydney Schneider.

Schneider, who would have plenty to do throughout the contest, came up big to ensure the Jamaicans did not fall further behind when she dove smartly to her right to stop Andressa Alves’ 40th-minute penalty. 

The reprieve would, however, be short-lived as Rozeira increased the lead when she slid in at the back post to tap in from close range five minutes into the second half.

The brilliant Brazilian would well and truly end the game as a contest with a sublime bit of talent in the 64th minute.  The forward’s stunning freekick, from just outside the area, curled over the head of Schneider to smack the underside of the crossbar before bouncing just over the line.  The tally marked the 8th hat-trick and 91st  goals of her career. The Jamaicans pressed well late on but could not find their debut goal.

Veteran Brazilian Formiga became the first player to appear at seven editions of the Women's World Cup and the oldest to feature in the tournament when she lined up against Jamaica on Sunday.

The 41-year-old midfielder plays her club football for Paris Saint-Germain and came out of international retirement to give herself a chance of being involved in this summer's tournament.

She was duly selected by Brazil boss Vadao, who did not hesitate to put her at the base of his midfield for the team's opening Group C match in Grenoble.

Her inclusion in the starting XI at 41 years and 98 days saw her overtake Christie Rampone's record. Rampone played for United States in the 2015 competition at the age of 40 years and 12 days,

In the men's game, the record for the most World Cup selections is jointly held by German great Lothar Matthaus and the Mexican pair of Antonio Carbajal and Rafael Marquez, who each played in five tournaments.

In the Women's World Cup, Japan's Homare Sawa played in six tournaments for her country.

Formiga's first World Cup came in 1995 and the closest she has come to being a champion was in 2007 when Brazil lost to Germany in the final.

Rising Bundesliga talent Leon Bailey has expectably been named as part of a 23-man squad for this month’s CONCACAF Gold Cup.

After months of speculation, the 21-year-old failed to make an expected debut for the national team in friendly international against the United States earlier this week.  The winger, however, is on course to make an appearance against Honduras at Jamaica’s National Stadium on July 17.

Bailey will be joined in the squad by seasoned campaigners Alvas Powell, Darren Mattocks and Je-Vaughn Watson with outstanding goalkeeper Andre Blake tasked to lead from the back.  Damion Lowe, some of the former national player Onandi Lowe, has also been included along with promising youngers Peter Lee Vassell and Tyreek Magee.

The Jamaicans have been placed in group C of the tournament alongside Honduras, El Salvador and Curacao.  The team will begin the tournament on June 17 with a match against Honduras.

Jamaica Gold Cup squad

Goalkeeper ANDRE BLAKE

PHILADELPHIA UNION (USA)

Defender JAMOI TOPEY

BETHLEHEM STEEL FC (USA)

Defender MICHAEL HECTOR

SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY FC (England)

Midfielder ANDRE LEWIS

PORTMORE UNITED FC (Jamaica)

Defender ALVAS POWELL

FC CINNCINATI (USA)

Forward DEVER ORGILL

MKE ANKARAGUCU SK (Turkey)

DEVER AKEEM

Forward LEON BAILEY

BAYER 04 LEVERKUSEN

(Germany)

Forward MAALIQUE FOSTER

RIO GRANDE VALLEY FC (USA)

Midfielder RICARDO MORRIS

PORTMORE UNITED FC (Jamaica)

Forward DARREN MATTOCKS

FC CINNCINATI (USA)

Forward SHAMAR NICHOLSON

NK DOMZALE (Slovenia)

Forward JUNIOR FLEMMINGS

PHOENIX RISING FC (USA)

Goalkeeper DWAYNE MILLER

SYRIANSKA FC (Sweden)

Defender SHAUN FRANCIS

LOUISVILLE FC (USA)

Midfielder JE-VAUGHN WATSON

OKC ENERGY (USA)

Forward PETER LEE VASSELL

LA FC (USA)

Defender DAMION LOWE

IK START (Norway)

Forward

BRIAN BROWN

RENO 1868 FC (USA)

Midfielder TYREEK MAGEE

HARBOUR VIEW FC (Jamaica)

Defender KEMAR LAWRENCE

NY RED BULLS (USA)

Midfielder KEVON LAMBERT

PHOENIX RISING FC (USA)

Midfielder DEVON WILLIAMS

LOUISVILLE FC (USA)

Goalkeeper AMAL KNIGHT

UNIVERSITY OF THE WEST

Shamar Nicholson's long-range stunner saw Jamaica upstage the United States 1-0 ahead of the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

In a rematch of the 2017 Gold Cup final won by USA, Jamaica emerged triumphant courtesy of Nicholson's first international goal at Audi Field on Wednesday.

Nicholson came off the bench and beat Zack Steffen with a memorable strike from outside the penalty area in Washington as both teams stepped up their preparations for the upcoming tournament.

Playing without Chelsea-bound star Christian Pulisic as head coach Gregg Berhalter gave players a chance to stake their Gold Cup claims, USA made a strong start but struggled afterwards.

USA put Jamaica, who had Bayer Leverkusen star Leon Bailey among the substitutes, on the backfoot during the early exchanges – the hosts enjoying success down the right side.

However, Jamaica eventually settled into their rhythm as the half petered out, with neither team creating any clear-cut chances.

Jamaica looked the more likely to score as the match wore on after Peter-Lee Vassell almost broke the deadlock with a curling effort in the 56th minute.

But Jamaica got the goal they deserved thanks to substitute Nicholson in memorable fashion four minutes later.

Nicholson cut inside and back out again before firing a stunning long-range shot past Steffen, who is set to join Manchester City before reportedly heading to Fortuna Dusseldorf on loan.

 

What does it mean? Unbeaten run over

USA's undefeated streak under Berhalter came to a halt. After wins against Panama, Costa Rica and Ecuador, and a draw with Chile, Jamaica stopped the run. Fortunately for Berhalter and USA, it comes prior to the Gold Cup.

Relax… Berhalter experimenting

USA fans, it is not so bad. While a loss is unwanted, it comes as Berhalter experimented with his starting line-up ahead of the midnight deadline for the Gold Cup roster. He will have a clearer picture of who to include in the 23-man squad.

Lack of ideas

While it was a chance to try new things, the manner in which USA faded would have frustrated Berhalter. After an impressive and high-octane start, the home nation were outplayed and struggled to keep up with Jamaica at times.

What's next?

USA will conclude their Gold Cup preparations against Venezuela on Sunday before the country's tournament opener against Guyana on June 18. Meanwhile, Jamaica will next play Honduras on June 17 – their first match of the Gold Cup.

The Jamaica Olympic Association has appointed retired Olympic sprinter Michael Frater O.D. as president of a newly created Athletes’ Commission.

Tissana Hickling registered a massive leap to claim the women’s long jump title at the Jamaica All Comers meet on Saturday, in the process registering the best mark for a Jamaican in the event this year.

The 21-year-old registered an impressive 6.82 in the first round, far and away the biggest jump of the competition.  In fact, the mark put her comfortably ahead of Chanice Porter who led the early Jamaican efforts with 6.73 registered in Guadeloupe earlier this year.

Hickling, who represented GC Foster College, was one of only four athletes to go over 6 metres, also registering the second-best throw of the competition with 6.42m in the third round.  The effort would put Hickling sixth in on the world’s top rank list this year.  German jumper Malaika Mihambo leads the pile with a leap of 6.99 set in February of this year.  Serbian Ivana Spanovic has registered the same mark, which was set in Glasgow in March of this year.

 

 

Jamaican athletes attending US colleges could find themselves in a bit of a predicament if they manage to qualify for the IAAF at the Jamaican national championships set for June 20-23.

Former Jamaica Prime Minister, Premier League Clubs Association (PLCA) president and chairman of Tivoli Gardens Football Club, Edward Seaga, died on Tuesday at the age of 89, after a battle with cancer.

In addition to being the leader of the country between 1980 and 1989, Seaga was well known for sizeable contributions to countless aspects of Jamaican life, particularly sports and culture. 

For several years, Seaga served as president of the Tivoli Gardens Sports Club and was a constant fixture on the sidelines of football, basketball and netball teams for several years. 

His achievements at the helm included five national premier league titles for the football team and the development of the Edward Seaga Sports Complex, at the Railway Oval in Tivoli Gardens, which served as the home base for the teams.

Tivoli Gardens was the community Seaga had, almost single handedly built, and it was the centre of much of his political power, as his work in that community helped him become the longest sitting Member of Parliament in the country's history.

Later on, Seaga served as chairman of both the Premier League Club Association (PLCA) and the recently dissolved Professional Football Association of Jamaica (PFAJ).

National Triathlete Llori Sharpe is one of three Caribbean athletes selected to participate in the UWI-CDB-Regional Emerging Athlete Development Programme in Barbados next month.

Twenty-six-year-old midfielder Havana Solaun is the final player selected to Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz squad that will campaign in the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France next month.

Jamaica international Leon Bailey sent a ripple of excitement through social media platforms after promising to wear the country’s national colours with pride and dignity.

The 21-year-old and his country’s football governors, the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF), were embroiled in a protracted dispute for the last couple of years, but recently announced the issues to be at an end.  The player has as a result been called up to a 40-man provisional team for the CONCACAF Gold Cup and is expected to make his debut next month.

In previous seasons, talented young Jamaica was linked with a move to several top-flight clubs, including Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United.  Despite a slower season than his 2017-2018 campaign where he scored 12 goals, Bailey still netted five times as the team sealed fourth place and European football in the Bundesliga. 

With his full focus now on the national team, however, Bailey has promised to wear the Reggae Boyz colours with pride and further hopes to serve as a role model.

“I promise to wear the colours black green and gold with honour, pride, and dignity while aiming to be a positive role model for kids with a dream,” Bailey post via social media platform Instagram.

   Jamaica are set to open the Gold Cup on June 17 against Honduras in Kingston in the first Gold Cup match to be played in the Caribbean.

The sport of netball is likely to be included in the 2022 CAC Games following news that the executive of the Central American and Caribbean Sports Organisation (CASCO) accepted a report of the CACSO Technical Commission that netball is to be included as one of the new sports on the CAC Games Programme.

Jamaica talismanic striker Khadijah Shaw found the back of the net in typically routine fashion as the national team registered a 2-0 win over Panama at the National Stadium on Sunday.

The match-up served as part of a final set of preparations ahead of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in June.  It was nonetheless, a closely contested affair in a blossoming rivalry between the teams.  Shaw, however, proved to be the early difference between the teams when she found the back of the net in the 29th minute.  The forward doubled the lead soon after the resumption, but Panama pulled one back through Natalia Mills in the 68th minute.  It proved to be a mere consolation, however, as Shakira Duncan rounded out a well-deserved win for the home team with a goal in the 80th minute.  The Jamaicans will open their campaign against Brazil on June 9, before facing Australia and Italy.

Even while revealing that he spending more time perfecting his 100m, 2018 European champion Zharnel Hughes said he is considering taking on the sprint double at the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar at the end of September.

 Jamaica’s Head Coach Romeo Monteith has named several debutants in a 17-man squad to participate in the inaugural America’s 9s Championship in Toronto on Saturday, May 18.

Jamaica is expected to face Canada at 12:20 pm, the USA at 2:20 pm and Latin Heat (combined South American Team) at 4:15 pm.

The debutants –based locally and in Canada - include teenagers Kahil Green, Makhaya Anderson and Lawrence Drummond, a trio, who have been among Jamaica’s top high school players for the past three years.

Their progress has been rewarded with a call up to the senior Nines team.

Jerome Laird and Roland Grey have also been impressive for the Jamaica Defence Force team in recent seasons and are expected to add some speed in the squad.

Other local based debutants include Daniel Morrison and Chawn Henry, both of whom were former standout youth players at Calabar High and Edith Dalton High, respectively. They have transitioned well to the senior club competitions and will feature prominently in the halves.

Mohenjo Thompson and Uriah Martin are the two players based in Canada who will don the Reggae Warriors colours for the first time. Thompson has plenty of experience as he is one of the few remaining players who played in the first ever rugby league club competition on the island in 2005.

The familiar faces in the squad are Adrian Hall, Greg Hall, Antonio Baker, Demone McDougal, Orlando Jones, Nicholas Wright, Chevaughn Bailey and Tyronie Rowe.

The team is also travelling with a match official in Kemoy Whyte who is expected to take the middle in some of the games.

 In addition, Jamaica will look to put together a female representative team of players based in Canada to face Canada and Ontario Select teams in exhibition matches.

“The team is looking forward to a good tournament. We have deliberately gone out for some younger players as we have begun the revitalization of our program, the next generation of Jamaica rugby league stars is now, so young players such as Anderson, Drummond and Green are our future,” said Monteith.

“Our veterans will provide plenty of guidance and we are looking forward to a good tournament. We are also excited by the potential to field a female representative team in the tournament. It’s the ambition of all the nations involved to establish full international female teams in the next few months.”

Jamaica National 9s Squad - Chawn Henry (Caribbean Maritime Institute Spartans), Makhaya Anderson ( Calabar High School), Antonio Baker (Cedar Grove Cyclones), Kahil Green (Excelsior Community College), Chevaughn Bailey- (GC Foster Lions) Lawrence Drummond (Kingston College), Jerome Laird, Roland Gray (Jamaica Defence Force Warriors), Daniel Morrison, Demone McDougal , Mohenjo Thompson (Washington Blvd. Bulls), Greg Hall, Orlando Jones , Tyronie Rowe, Uriah Martin (Unattached).  Tremaine Garrison (Reserve)

 

 

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