issa-sbf-white-logo.png
ssflogo2.png

Manchester United are said to be ready to turn their attention to Bayer Leverkusen Jamaica international Leon Bailey, if deals for two main targets, Borussia Dortmund's Jadon Sancho and Aston Villa's Jack Grealish, fail to materialize.

United head coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is reported to be keen on adding an attacking midfielder to his ranks ahead of next season, but the uncertainty of the coronavirus market and expense of Grealish and Sancho could make the Jamaican a more attractive prospect.

Bailey has had a stop-start kind of season, halted by injury and other issues, for Leverkusen after an eye-catching introduction to German football two seasons ago.  While the player remains sought after in the market, some believe his price tag now falls in the £40 million range.  This could make the player a more palatable option than Sancho and Grealish who are likely to eclipse the £100 million mark.

Bailey signed for Leverkusen from Belgian side Genk in 2017.  He's made 110 appearances across all competitions for the club, scoring 24 times.  His best campaign came in 2017-18 when he netted nine goals and provided six assists.   

In 19 Bundesliga appearances this season, Bailey has five goals.  The player has, however, lost his regular spot in the starting lineup under coach Peter Bosz.  He has three years remaining on his current contract.

Internationally, Bailey made his senior debut for the Reggae Boyz in 2019 and has been capped six times.

 

 

Veronica Campbell-Brown, one of the all-time greats of female sprinting, has revealed that she forged her talents in the intense furnace of competition that is the ISSA Boys and Girls Championships, arguably the biggest high school track meet on the planet.

Bahamian sprint star Shaunae Miller-Uibo and Jamaica’s Omar McLeod are set to be in action next month at the Weltklasse Zurich’s Inspiration Games exhibition event on July 9.

The cross-continent meeting will involve 30 athletes competing in eight disciplines across seven stadia. Athletes will compete in teams, with a Europe squad going up against teams from the USA and the rest of the world.

In the 150m, Miller-Uibo of Bahamas will race in Miramar, Florida, against USA’s six-time Olympic gold medallist Felix in Walnut, California, and Switzerland’s world bronze medallist Kambundji in Zurich.

Meanwhile, McLeod will take on Andre DeGrasse and Andre Vicaut in a 100-yard dash.

 Dalilah Muhammad will battle Léa Sprunger in a 300m hurdles and Katerina Stefanidi and Sandi Morris will contest the pole vault.

Noah Lyles and Alex Wilson take on the 200m and Christian Taylor goes up against Omar Craddock and Pablo Pichardo in the triple jump.

The Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) has come out in support of the decision of the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) to provide additional funding to National Olympic Committees (NOCs) in facilitating their preparation for the Tokyo Olympic Games that were postponed to next year because of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Two hundred and six national Olympic committees worldwide stand to benefit from the initiative that is expected to be managed through the five Continental Associations and ANOC, with the assistance of Olympic Solidarity.

ANOC has assured National Olympic Committees that it stands in solidarity with them in recognising the adverse financial implications triggered by the pandemic, and in safeguarding the welfare of athletes and all stakeholders.

 "It is a decision that signals empathetic understanding. It is a confidence vote in the ability and capacity of National Olympic Committees (NOCs) to repurpose plans, goals and objectives. But more importantly, it is an act of humanity and integrity and a demonstration of the Olympic spirit," said JOA President Christopher Samuda.

The decision was made in the wake of a conference involving ANOC President, Robin Mitchell, ANOC Secretary General Gunilla Lindberg, ANOC executives and Olympic Solidarity Director James MacLeod, and will provide support on a case-by-case basis to be determined by governing criteria.

"This is sport responding dynamically and in a practical way without self-serving interests but with sensitivity to the needs and aspirations of stakeholders who are facing the challenges of the current times but who, despite the crisis, have the conviction to stay in the game, to play the game and to transform the game for this and the next generations of sportsmen and sportswomen," Samuda said.

Premier Caribbean men’s squash player, Chris Binnie, has earned high marks from the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) for his professionalism and humility, among other things, as sports’ governing body here highlighted his ascent in the racquet sports global standings.

Binnie, the record-holder of nine Caribbean singles championship titles, improved his World Squash Federation rankings in singles to 76th in 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic halted play on the Professional Squash Association circuit. Binnie is also ranked 36th in doubles globally and 13th in the Americas region.

Commenting on his rise, Ryan Foster, CEO/Secretary General of sports’ apex sporting body, said: "The JOA is extremely proud of the recent rise in the world rankings of Chris Binnie. His hard work is a testimony to dedication and perseverance and we want to also congratulate the Jamaica Squash Association for their diligence in ensuring the success of their constituent member.

"Chris is the epitomè of a true professional, one of integrity, fair play and humility, all characters which represent Olympism. These traits led us to elect Chris to be the flagbearer for the recently held Panam Games in 2019. We will continue to strengthen our partnership with squash and all our member associations while we continue to lead the movement within our country,” added Foster.

The 31-year-old Jamaican’s improvement represented a major comeback, as Binnie played his way to a career-high world ranking of 65 in 2018, but fell to 88th in 2019 when he was beset by injuries.

Reflecting on the turnaround, Binnie said: “I was excited to start moving back up the rankings again. It (2019) was obviously a difficult year … I was plagued with injuries so my ranking definitely fell a bit. But last fall and early this spring before the coronavirus set in, I was doing really well. I had won a couple of events and I was moving back up the rankings, so I was very excited and looking forward, to once the Tour does start back, to get back out there and continue to do that.”

Prior to the shutdown, Binnie was successful in winning the Life Time Atlanta Open in Sandy Springs, in February and the Pittsburgh Challenger series in January. In December also, he was a member of the Jamaica team that placed 18th at the World Team Squash Championships in December and at the Panam Games in Lima, Peru in 2019, he partnered with Lewis Walters to make the quarter-finals.

Asked about the impact of the pandemic, Binnie said: “Yes, COVID is a big setback, but it’s a big setback for everybody, so I’ll try to use this time positively to help in other areas that I wouldn’t normally have time for and then I can build on that and help with my success once I’m back in competition mode.”

The prospects of competition returning appear encouraging with the resumption - and approved dates for a restart - for a number of big competitions, primarily the German Bundesliga and other top European leagues including Spain’s La Liga and the United Kingdom’s English Premier League, in football, as well as the United States’ National Basketball Association (NBA).

As he competes largely on the international PSA circuit, due to associated costs, Binnie was asked to comment on the support provided by the JOA.

“The support from the JOA obviously I’m incredibly grateful for it. Without them, it’d be very difficult to do what I do. I’m just very thankful that they’ve been on board and they’ve been helping me over the years getting ready in these smaller competitions – Panam, CAC and Caribbeans where I’ve been meddling and also on the Pro Tour where they’ve continued to help with my development,” said Binnie.

“I can’t thank them enough, (their support) it’s been invaluable and I hope that they can continue to do that. They’re definitely branching out support in many different sports now, that’s fantastic to see. I’m happy that they’re continuing to stick with me, even in the ups and the downs. Last year was a tough year and now I’m back on track so hopefully, things will continue to go well,” added Binnie.

Under the leadership of Christopher Samuda, its President, the JOA has ramped up its earning capacity in recent years, enabling their ability in contributing to its body of local sporting affiliates. Foster explained the nature of their support to squash.

"Some two years ago the JOA and the Jamaica Squash Association expanded their partnership to include the financial support to improve the sport within the country, as well as to increase the participation of their athletes in local and international competitions and we have seen the successes of this during the Commonwealth Games, CAC Games and PanAm Games," Foster outlined.

"We also extended our support directly to Chris in his preparations leading up to tournaments which have had obvious direct impact on his rise in world rankings."

As he continues to rise, Binnie is at looking at other horizons and primarily, the hope that his sport will soon make it to the Olympics.

“The Olympics is an interesting topic. There was a bid to get it into the 2020 Olympic Games and that, unfortunately, lost out … so it’s obviously looking for the next Games after that. So thankfully this (Tokyo 2020 postponement) doesn’t affect me as much and it’s more about focusing on the World Tour to get my ranking up so that later on when the Olympics do become an option I’ll be ready to perform.”

 

 

Donovan Bailey, the 1996 Olympic champion and former 100-metre world record holder, believes Canada has to confront its own issues of racism.

Retired Jamaica international Marlon King recently expressed regret about a checkered and sordid past but insists he can only face up to it and admit his mistakes.

During his time as a footballer, King had his fair share of headlines on the pitch, but they were routinely dwarfed by legal issues that occurred off it. The former Watford and Birmingham striker has three separate jail sentences and a litany of other offenses, which include theft, criminal damage, fraudulent use of vehicle license document, driving without insurance and drink driving.  But even by those standards, the sexual and physical assault of a young woman who rejected his advances at a nightclub in the Soho area of London was a low point.

The 2009 sexual assault case saw King's playing contract cancelled by then club Wigan, after he was convicted of groping the woman in a bar and then breaking her nose. Since then, the former player has moved to Zambia with his wife and three children and admits he is genuinely remorseful about his past.

“I’m sorry for what happened, especially to the young lady and to my family members for letting them down. But I’m at a point now where I can look back and think, ‘Jesus Christ. Some of the decisions I made’,” King said in an interview with The Athletic
.“I can’t get back what I did. That’s the thing. I can’t go back,” King said.
“Everything I’ve done is public knowledge. I can’t run away from it, so I can’t sit here and say, ‘No, I did this. I did that’. It has taken me years to try and figure myself out and work on myself.

“I cannot change what comes up on Google. I cannot change my path.

King has been eager to point out that these days he is a changed man.
"There’s no justification behind any wrongdoings. But my mental mindset right now could not be further from those incidents and those things. Even up to now, I’m finding speaking about issues that I had is therapeutic for me and I think is something I encourage everyone to do in all walks of life, because it helps.

“If you keep things in emotionally, it just builds up and you explode because everybody’s got a limit that they can take. And we give it the ego, ‘I’m alright, Jack, no, we’re OK’ and I think that’s a lot of what I did. I had a lot of things going on, off the pitch. I can openly say I’m one of those people that needed to talk."
King made 24 appearances and scored 12 goals for Jamaica’s national team. 


 

The Jamaica Cricket Association has expressed sadness at the passing of National Senior Women’s team coach Cleon Smith who died on Thursday, after a brief illness.

is truly saddened at the passing of Mr Cleon Smith, who was at the time of his death today, the coach for the National Senior Women’s team.

In addition to Jamaica’s senior women’s team, Smith was also the coach for the Northern Panthers Franchise, the Senior Men, Women and U15 coach for the St. Ann Cricket Association and he also coached at York Castle High School.

According to the JCA, Smith fell ill and was admitted to the Kingston Public Hospital just about two weeks ago but failed to recover from his ailment. They praised him for his contribution to the sport.

“Coach Smith was the epitome of commitment to the sport. Cricket has been a life-long love for him, and his association with the JCA dates back well over a decade. While Cleon was involved with the national programme as a coach for the national women’s team for an extended period, he stood in as U-17 men’s coach at one point. Beyond that, he was involved at the local franchise level, the parish level and even Headley Cup,” said JCA CEO Courtney Francis.

“It is quite a sad day for us at the JCA and across the local cricket landscape. Jamaica’s cricket was better off for his years of dedicated service. Our thoughts and prayers are with the senior women’s team in this moment and we will reach out to provide support for them as they would be the hardest hit within the national programme.

“To his family, we extend our deepest condolences. We are with you in this period of grief and we will be a pillar of strength on which you can lean. The JCA is here for you,” he added.

The Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) has paid a special tribute to the legendary track and field icon, Dr Arthur Wint on the anniversary of his birth, for his ‘historic and pioneering’ achievements as one of Jamaica’s ‘greatest athlete and administrator’.

Leon Bailey has been served with a "cease-and-desist order" from Jamaican football chiefs who came under fire from the Bayer Leverkusen winger.

The highly rated 22-year-old questioned the capabilities of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) and said the governing body, rather than the country's players, would be to blame if the Reggae Boyz fail to reach the 2022 World Cup.

Bailey, who has frequently been linked with Premier League giants Chelsea, also criticised the selection policies of coach Theodore Whitmore, suggesting he chops and changes his squads too frequently.

He now risks punishment from the JFF, whose president Michael Ricketts has urged Bailey to come to the federation first with any grievances.

Speaking to radio station Hitz 92 FM, Ricketts said: "Tell us what you think the problems are."

Ricketts said the comments were "unfounded", and JFF general secretary Dalton Wint told the Jamaican Gleaner newspaper that Bailey's barbs had breached protocol and would inevitably see him risk sanctions.

Wint said: "You can't be publicly criticising your coach or your administration without the possibilities of you being reprimanded, and so it is something that we are discussing internally as we move forward.

"What he said was very unfortunate, and it does not auger well for good relationship building for players or staff to openly criticise your employer.

"It is a cease-and-desist order because it is something that we will not be accommodating, and we are imploring everybody to stay in line and to be respectful, and if you have any difficulties or concerns, bring it to the right forum and it will be discussed, deliberated, and actions taken, and so don't wash your dirty linen in public."

Bailey, who joined Leverkusen from Genk in 2017, has scored 19 goals in 82 Bundesliga games. He was a substitute on Monday in the 4-1 win over Werder Bremen, coming off the bench in the second half.

On Sunday, the world welcomed news of the birth of the first child of track and field icon Usain Bolt and his lovely other half Kasi Bennett. Congratulations to both who I am sure will make wonderful parents to their little girl.

Chris Gayle has apologized for some of the comments made regarding his departure from the Jamaica Tallawahs in three videos posted on YouTube on April 27.

The Caribbean has created many of the great cricketers in history and quite a number of them would have been greater still had they not had such keen competition for places in a stacked West Indies side.

A few weeks ago, we decided to have our own West Indies Championship featuring the all-time greatest sides from the region and a mouthwatering contest is set to unfold if you look at the teams we have come up with over the period.

Today we turn our attention to Jamaica, a country that has produced fast bowlers of the highest quality, but also every other type of cricketer you can think of. The country has had brilliant representation at the West Indies level behind the stumps, as well as with the bat.

As is usual, we invite your comments on the team we’ve selected because everybody has their favourites. For the purposes of consistency, we’ve made up the teams using six batsmen, a wicketkeeper, and four bowlers.

On occasion, somebody gets left out who people think it incredulous to do so. Do not hesitate to tell us where we went wrong by commenting under the article on Facebook or on Twitter.

 

BestXI: Jamaica

 

Chris Gayle 180 matches, 13,226 runs, 333 HS, 44.83 avg, 32 (100s), 64 (50s)

Christopher Henry Gayle’s fame and claim to greatness has come largely from his exploits in T20 cricket. However, the tall, powerful, imposing left-hander, even before that was one of the most dominant batsmen in Jamaica’s rich cricketing history. Gayle has scored more first-class runs than any cricketer the country has produced. His 13,226 runs have come at a healthy average of 44.83, only surpassed by Maurice Foster and the colossus of West Indies cricket, George Headley. Gayle has also scored 32 centuries in the format, again, the figure is only surpassed by Headley, who has 33. But Gayle stands alone in the number of half-centuries he has scored, slamming 64 of them.

 

Easton McMorris – 95 matches, 5906 runs, 218 HS, 42.18 avg, 18 (100s), 22 (50s)

Easton McMorris struggled for the West Indies when he got his chances at that level in the early 1960s, but for Jamaica, he was immense, averaging 42.18 as an opener and scoring 18 centuries and 22 fifties in just 95 matches, ending his career with 5,906 runs under his belt.

 

George Headley - 103 matches, 9921 runs, 344* HS, 69.86 avg, 33 (100s), 44 (50s)

George Headley needs no introduction really, his 22-match stint at the very top of cricket is legendary, but as a first-class cricketer, he was even more consistent, averaging nearly 70 over the course of 103 games. He scored 9,921 runs, including 33 centuries and 44 half-centuries.

 

Lawrence Rowe – 149 matches, 8755 runs, 302 HS, 37.57 avg, 18 (100s), 38 (50s)

Lawrence Rowe’s first-class average of 37.57 belies the impact he had on the game in Jamaica and certainly throughout the Caribbean. Crowds would come to regional matches just to see ‘Yagga’ bat. But he wasn’t bereft of runs when his career ended, scoring 18 centuries and 38 fifties from his 149 matches. The style with which he put together the majority of the 8,755 runs he scored was something to watch. According to teammate, Michael Holding, Rowe was the best batsman he ever saw. Unfortunately, Rowe was troubled with his eyesight, as well as an allergy to grass, of all things. That may have spoilt his performances somewhat, but at his best, there was no better batsman.

 

Maurice Foster 112 matches, 6731 runs, 234 HS, 45.17, 17 (100s), 35 (50s)

Maurice Foster was one of the most prolific runscorers in the 1960s and 70s and it was said, his ability to play fast bowling came from his love for table tennis where he was a West Indies champion at one time. In just 112 matches, Foster notched up 6,731 runs at an average of 45.17, only bettered by the great George Headley. In those six thousand plus runs can be found 17 first-class centuries and 35 half-centuries to boot.

 

Collie Smith 70 matches, 4031 runs, 169 HS, 40.31 avg, 10 (100s), 20 (50s)

Collie Smith died at the age of 26, but in that short time, the space between a boy and a man, he managed to score 10 centuries and 20 half-centuries in first-class cricket. Of course, by the time he was 26, his prodigious talent meant he had already represented the West Indies 26 times, scoring four centuries and six half-centuries. For Jamaica, he would play 70 times, amassing 4,031 runs at an average of 40.31.   

 

Jeffrey Dujon – 200 matches, 9763 runs, 163* HS, 39.05 avg, 21 (100s), 50 (50s)

A wicketkeeper averaging nearly 40 is a luxury. But his batting was only part of the story, as Dujon had to keep wicket for the West Indies during a period when it was notoriously difficult. Pace, real pace was hard to react to from behind the stumps but Dujon made his acrobatic catches so commonplace, they ceased to be a thing. At the first-class level, Dujon would claim 469 victims, 22 of those went to stumpings. But Dujon can also be proud of the 21 centuries he put together in 200 matches, as well as the 50 half-centuries that were part of his 9,763 runs with the bat.

 

Michael Holding – 222 matches, 778 wkts, 23.43 avg, 49.9 SR

The Rolls Royce of pace bowling, the man known as ‘Whispering Death’, has claimed 778 first-class wickets, standing only behind Courtney Walsh who had a markedly longer career. Holding would end his after 222 matches and his wicket tally would be taken at an average of 23.43 with a good strike rate of 49.9. A student of the game, Holding would outthink batsmen, even as he delivered with blistering pace that could shock you into doing altogether the wrong thing.

 

Courtney Walsh – 429 matches, 1,807 wkts, 21.71 avg, 47.2 SR

Courtney Walsh took a wicket every 47 balls during his long first-class career. That career would span 429 matches and include 1,807 wickets, making anything any Jamaican ever did with the ball, minuscule. His strike rate was better than Holding’s and so was his average. The stingy Walsh would only give up 21.71 runs for every wicket he took. A generally jovial, charismatic man, with ball in hand, he transformed into a bit of a grinch and is arguably the greatest pace bowler the country has produced.

 

Patrick Patterson – 161 matches, 493 wkts, 27.51 avg, 49.3 SR

Patrick Patterson drove fear into batsmen, even those who claim to like the quick stuff. Patterson, with his trademark shuffle to the crease and that high-lifting boot that would signal what’s to come, was devastating and on occasion, unplayably quick. He would end his 161-match first-class career with 493 wickets at an average of 27.51. His strike rate of 49.3 was also something to behold.

 

Nikita Miller – 100 matches, 538 wkts, 16.31 avg, 48.9 SR

Nikita Miller is the most prolific bowler in the history of Jamaican cricket. In just 100 first-class matches, Miller bagged 538 wickets at an average of 16.31. His strike rate of 48.9 is better than all his potential fast-bowling teammates. Miller has taken 10 wickets in a first-class innings on 12 occasions and also has 35 five-wicket hauls to go with the 36 occasions he took four in an innings. Between 2005 and 2019, Miller single-handedly orchestrated many of Jamaica’s victories. 

Blessed with a free-stroking, aggressive style best suited for limited-overs cricket, West Indian Chris Gayle has also had a solid career as a Test batsman.

His 79-ball century at Cape Town in January 2004, on the back of a South African first- innings score of 532, was typical of his no-holds-barred approach.

However, Gayle has also shown the ability to bat long periods and the hunger to make big scores. In 2009 against Australia, Gayle batted almost seven-and-a-half hours in scoring an unbeaten 165 to save the Test in Adelaide; in the very next game, though, he smashed the fifth-fastest Test century - off 70 balls - to indicate that quick-scoring remained his preferred method.

The following year he batted almost ten hours and scored 333 against Sri Lanka and Muralitharan in Galle, becoming only the fourth batsman to score two triples in Tests, thus proving again, his ability to bat long periods.

He is the most capped player for the West Indies in international cricket and is the only player to score a triplet of centuries – a triple hundred in Tests, double hundred in ODIs and a hundred in T20Is.

 

Career Statistics 

Full name: Christopher Henry Gayle 

Born: September 21, 1979, Kingston, Jamaica

Major Teams: Balkh Legends, Barisal Burners, Chattogram Challengers, Chittagong Vikings, D Ganga's XI, Dhaka Gladiators, Dolphins, Hooper XI, ICC World XI, Jacobs XI, Jacques Kallis Invitational XI, Jamaica, Jamaica Tallawahs, Jozi Stars, Karachi Kings, Kings XI Punjab, Kolkata Knight Riders, Lahore Qalandars, Lions, Marylebone Cricket Club, Matabeleland Tuskers, Melbourne Renegades, Rangpur Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore, RR Sarwan's XI, Somerset, St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, Stanford Superstars, Sydney Thunder, Vancouver Knights, West Indies Under-19s, Western Australia, Worcestershire

Playing Role: Opener

Batting Style: Left-hand bat

Bowling Style: Right-arm off-break

Test Batting Averages - West Indies (2000-2014)

Mat      Inns     NO       Runs    HS   Ave      BF       SR       100      50       

103      182      11     7214    333   42.18   11970  60.26   15       37       

 

Career highlights 

  • One of four batsmen to pass 300 more than once in Tests
  • One of five West Indians to carry bat in Tests
  • Eighth fastest century in Tests (70 balls)
  • The first player to hit all 6 balls in an over for four in Tests
  • The first player to hit the first ball of a Test match for six

Very few players in Test Cricketing history have managed to combine batting and wicket-keeping as consistently and successfully as Dujon has. Agile and acrobatic in his movements, and possessed of a great pair of hands, he was riveting to watch as he handled the pace of the great fast bowlers of his time. Men such as Holding, Roberts, Marshall, Garner, Ambrose, and Walsh benefitted greatly from his ability to do the spectacular.

He remains in the top five on the all-time world list, and No.1 in the history of West Indies Cricket in dismissals with 267 catches and five stumpings. Jeffrey Dujon is the only West Indian cricketer to have played for a decade and never have lost a test series.

Dujon's runs for West Indies were often made after the dashing top-order batsmen had for once charged into oblivion, whereupon he and Gus Logie would set about rebuilding the innings. He scored 110 against India in the Antigua Test of 1982-83, 130 against Australia at Port of Spain in 1983-84, 101 against England at Old Trafford in 1984, 139 at Perth in 1984-85, and 106 not out against Pakistan in 1987-88.

 

Career Statistics

Full name:  Peter Jeffrey Leroy Dujon

Born:    28 May 1956 (age 63)

Kingston, Jamaica

Batting:  Right-handed

Bowling: Right-arm medium pace

Major Team: West Indies (1981-1991)

Role: Wicketkeeper

 

            Mat    Inns    NO     Runs   HS     Ave     100    50      Ct    St

Tests   81     115        11      3322   139    31.94         5    16     267     5

 

 

Achievements

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.