SPARKLING BOUNDARIES His name was Basil Williams – or to be more precise, Alvadon Basil Williams – but to Jamaicans and other West Indians, he was simply ‘Shotgun’. He was a cricketer, an opening batsman, and as the sobriquet suggests, he was a no-nonsense, attacking and aggressive batsman who feared no one. He went in firing, all guns blazing, and, most times, he also went out firing. He never ran for cover, regardless of the situation. He was, however, not a born cavalier. As a young man, playing cricket for Jamaica Youths and Senior Cup cricket for St Catherine Cricket Club, he was a middle-order batsman, an elegant batsman, fluent and clean, and many saw him as one for the mountain top. As a young man, he seemed destined to accompany his good friend, Lawrence ‘Yagga’ Rowe, possibly into the West Indies team, and another good friend, Lynden ‘Muddy’ Wright into the Jamaica team, but with runs hard to come by, that seemed a forlorn dream. On his debut performance in 1970, batting at number six, he was disappointing, and he had to wait until 1977 for his second chance. With Rowe as the Jamaica captain, Basil Williams was called to trials one more time. After batting in the middle and failing to make use of the opportunity on that occasion, he opened the innings in the last match, went at the bowling from ball one, and selected himself. Williams made no mistake. He went out, and from the moment he took guard, he sent the fielders scattering with booming drives, some of which ended up one bounce to the third-man boundary. That was indeed that. Williams, in a dashing performance, made a good score, and when the selectors met, with Rowe in his corner, he was in the team – this time as an opening batsman. And he embraced his new-found swashbuckling style with delight. In that year of 1977, Williams went from strength to strength, reeling off shot after shot, and scoring 43 and 88, against Barbados and Wayne Daniel, Vanburn Holder, Joel Garner, Albert Padmore, and David Holford; 34 against Trinidad and Tobago and Bernard Julien, Inshan Ali, Imtiaz Alia, and Raphick Jumadeen; 27 against Andy Roberts of the Combined Islands; and 123 against Guyana and Colin Croft, and Sew Shivnarine. And in 1978, he reeled off 96 against Guyana, Croft, and Shivnarine; 28 and 83 against Jumadeen, Inshan Ali, and Ranjie Nanan; and 78 and 54 not out against Holder, Clarke, and Malcolm Marshall, before joining the new-look West Indies against the Bob Simpson-led Australia. DASHING DISPLAY That was the West Indies without their Kerry Packer players against Australia without their Kerry Packer players, and ‘Shotgun’ enjoyed himself smashing 100 runs off 110 deliveries with 19 sparkling boundaries at Bourda in his first Test match. Among the bowlers who beat a hasty retreat that day was Australia’s speed merchant, the ‘Blonde Bombshell’ Jeff Thomson, arguably – according to many, including myself – the fastest bowler of all time. And that was not all. At Queen’s Park Oval, in the following Test, Shotgun swatted the bowlers like flies, hitting 87 laced with 14 boundaries. Basil Williams’ sojourn in Test cricket lasted for only seven Test matches, all while the Packer players were absent. Before he went, however, he gave the fans something to remember him for – a beautiful, stroke-filled innings of 111 at Calcutta’s Eden Gardens, against the best of India and Kapil Dev, Karson Ghavri, Bishen Bedi, and Srinivasan Venkataraghavan. Shotgun Williams lasted for only a short while, probably because of the presence of Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes. It was, however, short and spicy. Apart from his Senior Cup exploits at Kensington CC, however, his batting continued to be glorious and brilliant as he went for the bowlers, both pace and spin. It was a time to remember – a time when batsmen were bold, asking for no quarter and giving none in return. Editor’s Note: Basil Williams died in Atlanta, Georgia, on Sunday at age 65.
Webb removed GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Island (CMC): Jeffrey Webb, the disgraced former president of CONCACAF, has finally been removed as president of the Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA). CIFA made the announcement in a statement issued after an emergency meeting of its executive Monday night which followed Webb’s guilty plea in a probe into corruption in international football. Webb initially pleaded not guilty to the charges but US Department of Justice officials revealed last week that he has switched his plea and agreed to forfeit more than US$6 million of ill-gotten gains. Putin moves to end WCup 2018 delays MOSCOW (AP): President Vladimir Putin has demanded delays in construction of 2018 World Cup projects be quickly overcome. After chairing a meeting on Russia’s preparations yesterday, Putin says there have been “certain difficulties” at various facilities, and he highlighted the Baltic port of Kaliningrad, where “delays there should be fixed as quickly as possible.”
Local stakeholders have expressed confidence that the island’s top sports facilities will stave off, and quickly recover from, the expected onslaught of torrential rains and extreme weather associated with Hurricane Matthew. Speaking with The Gleaner yesterday, Major Desmon Brown, general manager of Independence Park Limited, operators of the National Stadium, the National Indoor Sports Centre, Leila Robinson Courts, basketball courts, National Aquatic Centre and the National Arena, said the facility is ready to ride out the storm. Brown’s organisation also oversees operations for the Trelawny Multi-purpose Stadium, and said that venue will be safe as well. “We have put through a plan, and one of the major things we did was to remove all objects that can fly around and we have covered the stuff. Unfortunately, at Trelawny, we have a lot of glass there, and we can’t do much about that, so we just have to do what we can do,” he said. The Trelawny Multi-Purpose Stadium is hosting the West Indies women, and Brown has backed all government facilities to reopen soon after the storm. “Both the Indoor [Centre] and the National Arena are built to withstand hurricanes. The Indoor Centre was built in 2004, The National Arena withstood Hurricane Gilbert, so I don’t see why it wouldn’t withstand anything else,” he stressed. Brown added that all venues will be ready in a week following the departure of persons using the National Arena as a hurricane shelter. “The Arena is being used as a shelter, so we can’t plan anything until all the persons move out. For the National Stadium, we expect that within a week, it will be ready to host all events,” he noted. Over on the western side of the island, Orville Powell, president of reigning Red Stripe Premier League champions Montego Bay United, said those venues won’t be seriously affected because of “proper drainage”. “We have proper drainage here at Montego Bay United, (located at Wespow Park), Catherine Hall, and I can speak for Reno FC also,” Powell said. “I don’t think we will have an issue with water, and Jarrett Park is the same thing. Rain will fall on to the pitches but they will be okay,” he said, adding that MoBay United stopped training as early as Friday last week. Powell said preparations for the hurricane have included taking down billboards. Meanwhile, George Forbes, Inter-Secondary School Sports Association competition officer said, for the Manning and daCosta Cup competitions decisions will be made to resume action following the storm. “It all depends on the damage that would be done to the fields. It’s the whole island that will be affected, so we can’t make a decision until we know where is affected,” he reasoned. “As soon as we get the go-ahead after Matthew, we will make a decision. We are not going to rush anything, we have to wait and see what happens,” he added.” Forbes hinted that select venues could be used, if school playing fields are damaged. “Yes we could do that but we prefer to wait until the passage of Matthew before we can make a decision,” Forbes revealed. One such venue could be the Sabina Park cricket ground in Kingston. Calls to Sabina Park and Jamaica Cricket Association Chief Executive Officer Courtney Francis’ phone went unanswered yesterday. Decisions after storm
BE SENSIBLE Newly appointed Jamaica Scorpions captain Nikita Miller is calling for better judgement to be exercised by batsmen within the team as they seek to address their batting failures in the ongoing 2016-2017 Digicel WICB Regional Four-day Championship. Set to contest their third match of the campaign, beginning on Friday at Sabina Park, against early leaders Barbados Pride, the Scorpions, who are currently fifth in the six-team tournament, have so far passed the 200 runs landmark once in four innings. That was against reigning champions Guyana Jaguars in Guyana in their first innings. The other totals have been 147, 151 and 159. These below-par performances have also resulted in only two players, opener John Campbell and Jermaine Blackwood, scoring half-centuries with the former scoring two, and the latter once. The left-handed Campbell hit 71 and one against Guyana before following up with 32 and 67 against the Windward Islands Volcanoes at the weekend at Sabina Park, while West Indies Test representative, Blackwood, after scoring 18 and 96 against the Jaguars, put up three and 27 in the second match. “We need to be sensible about what we are doing. I don’t think we are showing enough common sense in our batting,” states Miller, who claimed a Man of the Match, five for 22, in the second innings to spearhead Jamaica to a come-from-behind 41 runs over the Volcanoes on Monday. They lost to the Jaguars by 181 runs in their opener. “We have as batsmen an aggression naturally because that’s how we play naturally, but what you see happening is we are not finding the right kind of blend in terms of attacking or defending. “It is disappointing, and we need to find that combination very quickly, or else as the season progresses, we are going to falter.” Jamaica, who under the leadership of young batsman, Paul Palmer Jr, finished third last season, has two other specialist batsmen on their 13-man roster. They are discarded West Indies opener, Shacaya Thomas, and promising young batsman, Brandon King. This could thereby result in a possible change for the Barbados clash with Guyanese-born opener Trevon Griffith with scores of 20, 13, six and 22, a potential candidate for a replacement. SPECIALIST BATSMEN Middle-order batsman Andre McCarthy, fresh from his recent tour with West Indies ‘A’ away to Sri Lanka, is the other specialist batsman in the team. He has so far amassed totals of 36, two, one and one. Out-of-favour West Indies wicketkeeper batsman Chadwick Walton has been batting at number six and has so far tallied scores of 14, 13, six and 14. All-rounder and new recruit, Derval Green, in the two matches so far has effected scores of five, zero, four and two batting at number seven. “Barbados will be a tougher challenge, and our batters need to recognise this, and do something about it,” Miller added. “Information is not short, practice is not short, and encouragement is not short. It’s down to the individual to get themselves going.”
Former champions Harbour View will look to rebound from two consecutive losses today when they host Arnett Gardens in the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) third round, preliminary game at Harbour View Stadium starting at 3 p.m. The Stars of the East are coming off 3-2 and 2-0 defeats to Boys’ Town and Reno FC, respectively, in five days. Now, they will host the four-time national champions in a critical game for both teams. . Harbour View have brought back former club stars such as Sean Fraser, Luton Shelton, McKauley Tulloch and Akeem Priestly to bolster their attack, but the team remains inconsistent. They are currently in ninth position on 27 points, just four above the relegation zone, and will hunt full points against the Junglists. The Ludlow Bernard-coached team needs to get tighter in defence as they have conceded 32 goals in 25 matches. Arnett are coming off a 1-0 win against Humble Lion and are now in sixth position on 38 points, just three adrift of fifthplace Portmore United, who are on 41 points. With the top six teams advancing to the championship play-offs at the completion of the third and final preliminary round, the battle for places is becoming hotter and hotter. Arnett will look to super-sub Kemal Malcolm, Newton Sterling, captain Oneil ‘Bigga’ Thompson, Dicoy Williams and Ranike Anderson to get past the hosts. Tomorrow’s games – 5:30 p.m.: UWI FC vs Tivoli Gardens at National Stadium – 8 p.m.: Portmore United vs Boys’ Town at National Stadium – 3 p.m.: Harbour View vs Arnett Gardens at Harbour View Stadium – 3:30 p.m.: Jamalco vs Maverley-Hughenden at Wembley Centre of Excellence in Clarendon – 6 p.m.: Waterhouse vs Humble Lion at Drewsland Stadium Today’s games
IT’s only April but racing fans will this afternoon get a sneak preview of what is expected to be one of many epic clashes between FRANFIELD and BIGDADDYKOOL.Horses with contrasting running styles and a two-year age difference, six-year-old FRANFIELD and his four-year-old rival have one thing in common, indisputable stamina which has made them the country’s top two stayers.The Legal Light Trophy, run over nine furlongs and 25 yards, is the season’s first major grade one distance race for older horses, setting the tone for the bigger races at the back end of the year after the three-year-olds have completed their classic campaigns.Facing four rivals, none of whom can match them for class, FRANFIELD and BIGDADDYKOOL have a score to settle, last November’s much-disputed 10-furlong Superstakes.Richard Azan’s FRANFIELD was disqualified for drifting BIGDADDYKOOL inside the final half-furlong after getting rid of SEEKING MY DREAM in a terrific stretch battle.Though they subsequently faced each other in December’s Diamond Mile when BIGDADDYKOOL placed second behind SEEKING MY DREAM and FRANFIELD finished down the track in sixth position, today’s distance is the ideal trip for both horses.trained wellUnraced since landing the 12-furlong Harry Jackson marathon on New Year’s Eve, BIGDADDYKOOL has trained well for the Legal Light, putting down fast exercise times at five, six and seven furlongs this month.However, while BIGDADDYKOOL was cooling out in his stall earlier this season, FRANFIELD was out and about, placing third behind CAMPESINO at 1300 metres and finishing second to SEEKING MY DREAM in the 1500-metre Chairman’s Trophy.Brought to the boil by Azan, he stubbornly made all the running to beat United States-bred BLUE DIXIE by a short head in last month’s 1820-metre Bonnie Blue Flag Trophy.Though BIGDADDYKOOL ran a big race and was duly awarded the Superstakes in the stewards’ room on his first grade one appearance, FRANFIELD literally made all the running that afternoon with 57.0 kilos and had to fight off the country’s top miler, SEEKING MY DREAM, the entire way.The Superstakes all but fell into BIGDADDYKOOL’s lap, closing in for the kill in the stretch run, seven pounds lighter than FRANFIELD, who still had enough fight in him to take the race to the wire.In what is expected to be a match race, FRANFIELD being more pacey makes him the controlling speed in the event. BIGDADDYKOOL is racing for the first time in four months and will find it hard to outfinish his older rival, especially with a four-pound swing out of the Superstakes against him.
ROSEAU, Dominica (CMC):West Indies defied opener Azhar Ali’s 14th Test century and Pakistan’s attritional batting with sheer perseverance, to leave the decisive third Test at Windsor Park well poised on yesterday’s second day.The Caribbean side were forced to toil on a lifeless pitch but did so manfully to dismiss Pakistan in their first innings for 376, an hour before the close.Azhar, starting the day unbeaten on 85, carved out 127 – his second successive hundred following his 105 in the first innings of the Barbados Test last week.Captain Misbah-ul-Haq struck 59 playing in his final Test while wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed produced a breezy 51 down the order.Part-time off-spinner Roston Chase was the best bowler with four for 103 while captain and seamer Jason Holder claimed three for 71 and leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo, two for 61.Left to navigate eleven tricky overs at the end, West Indies openers Kieran Powell (9 not out) and Kraigg Brathwaite (5 not out) endured little horrors to reach the close unscathed on 14 without loss.The Caribbean side trail Pakistan by 362 runs heading into the pivotal day three of the match.INCHED WAY THROUGHResuming the day on 169 for two, the visitors inched their way painfully through an extended opening session, adding a mere 58 runs from 30 overs sent down.The lone casualty of the morning was veteran outstanding right-hander Younis Khan, like Misbah in his final Test of a glittering career, fell leg before wicket to Holder 45 minutes into the day after adding just eight to his overnight 10.Azhar, however, reached his century an hour before lunch when he turned Holder to fine leg for a couple of and was unbeaten on 122 at the interval with Pakistan crawling to 227 for three.
ROSEAU, Dominica (CMC):A moment of stark madness from tail-ender Shannon Gabriel ended West Indies’ stubborn resistance and laid waste to more than half a century of history as Pakistan pulled off a nerve-jangling 101-run victory in the decisive third Test to clinch a historic first-series win on Caribbean soil yesterday.Courtesy of a magnificent unbeaten 101 from the immovable Man-of-the-Match Roston Chase, West Indies defied a ruthless but tiring Pakistan bowling attack for nearly 90 overs and appeared on the brink of a brilliant rescue effort, with seven balls left in the day at Windsor Park.But Gabriel, who had defended purposely for just over half-hour, suffered a rush of blood and essayed a wild slog at the 22nd delivery he faced – the last of the day’s penultimate over – and was bowled by champion leg-spinner Yasir Shah for four as the Windies were dismissed for 202.The result gave Pakistan a 2-1 win in the three-Test victory, following a seven-wicket victory in the opening Test at Sabina Park in Jamaica last month, and a 106-run defeat in the second Test at Kensington Oval in Barbados earlier this month.For the retiring veterans, captain Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan, the success also provided a memorable farewell, with Pakistan winning their first series since they first toured the Caribbean 59 years ago.Chase almost proved the difference for the Windies, striking 12 fours and a six in a monumental innings that spanned 239 balls and a shade over six hours, reviving memories of his match-saving maiden Test hundred against India last year at Sabina Park.The knock was his third hundred in his 10th Test and second of the series, following his 131 in the second Test.BREEZY 25Shimron Hetmyer struck a breezy 25 and captain Jason Holder chipped in with 22, but the hosts failed to cope with Yasir, who claimed five for five for 92 to finish with match figures of eight for 218 and who took the Man-of-the-Series honours.He was supported by debutant seamer Hasan Ali, who picked up three for 33.Resuming the day on seven for one with the victory target of 304 purely academic, the Windies’ bid to save the match suffered a huge blow when they lost three wickets in the morning session to slump to 73 for four at lunch.Unbeaten on 19 at lunch, Chase played with confidence and authority to reach his half-century 40 minutes before tea and was not out on 66 at the interval, with West Indies on 146 for six.Holder, however, failed to add to his tea time 22, falling lbw to a Hasan Ali full toss in the third over on the resumption.With Pakistan closing in for the kill, Chase was forced to ride his luck, dropped twice by Hasan Ali off return catches on 66 and 91, and then being caught off a no-ball at first slip by Asad Shafiq late in the day off Mohammad Abbas as tensions rose.He made the most of the chances to notch three figures late in the day, whipping Hasan Ali through mid-on for four to raise his landmark.Gabriel then frustrated Pakistan with a straight bat and a cool head and steadily grew in confidence as the visitors began to show signs of panic.But with a draw within reach, he lost his composure and with it, the series.
Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netCalvin Abueva was noticeably absent in Alaska’s 101-92 loss to Star Friday night in the PBA Governors’ Cup at Ynares Sports Center,The gutsy forward also reportedly hasn’t showed up in Alaska practices late and has skipped the national team training since the resumption last Thursday. ADVERTISEMENT View comments ‘I’m out!’: PewDiePie releases last video before taking break from YouTube 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano LeBron James scores 31 points, Lakers beat Rockets MOST READ Aces head coach Alex Compton, though, offered little explanation about his star forward’s absence.“He’s got personal matters to take care of, and that’s all I can comment,” said Compton.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’Abueva is part of the lineup that is set to compete in the Fiba Asia Cup in Lebanon.The Filipinos are set to leave for the continental meet in Beirut on August 6 and Compton is unsure whether Abueva will still play for Alaska until then. Team Manila softbelles gain semis Indian national gunned down in Camarines Sur McGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Kawhi Leonard, Clippers rally to beat Pelicans Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ “We’ll find out how things are, I really don’t have anything else to comment but that’s all I can share to you,” said Compton. LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information.
Team Caguioa banked on the hot hands of Gawyn Fernandez to trip Team Slaughter, 15-13, and snare the title in the Camarines Sur leg of the 2017 PBA Ginebra San Miguel 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament in Calabanga last Friday.With the game tied at 13 with 11 seconds left, Fernandez drained the marginal two-pointer from the right corner to seal the victory and tow Team Caguioa to the National Finals.ADVERTISEMENT The 6-foot-3 Fernandez , who topscored with nine points, was joined by Dan Michael Martin, Daniell Martin Uy, and Raphael Jude De Vera in Team Caguioa.Team Aguilar prevailed in Sariaya, Quezon, the previous week as Kenneth Mercado, Jervin Deduyo, Virgilio VJ Serios, and Junmark Silvarez routed Team Tenorio, 21-10, in the Finals at Computer Systems Technological College Gym.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’Team Caguioa and Team Aguilar hiked the National Finalists to 12, with four more regional tiffs set in La Union, Davao, Cebu, and Tacloban in August.Once the field of 16 “Ganado Sa Buhay” teams are complete, they will all move on to the knockout National Finals on Sept. 1, to be held at SM Megamall Activity Center. Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ View comments Indian national gunned down in Camarines Sur The last two teams standing will move on to the semi-finals and the championship game, to be held on Sept. 3 at halftime of a Manila Classico Game (Barangay Ginebra San Miguel vs Hot Shots) at Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sept. 3.The 2017 PBA Ginebra San Miguel 3-on-3 National Champion will take home P50,000 in cash prize, a trophy, and Ginebra products.For updates, check Ginebra San Miguel’s Facebook page @BarangayGinebra or visit the website www.ginebrasanmiguel.com.ph.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next McGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Kawhi Leonard, Clippers rally to beat Pelicans LATEST STORIES MOST READ LeBron James scores 31 points, Lakers beat Rockets Reality check hits Gilas ahead of Fiba Asia Cup ‘I’m out!’: PewDiePie releases last video before taking break from YouTube 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano