Priestly still yearns to represent country

first_img GREAT POTENTIAL GOOD PERFORMANCE “My performance was really good throughout. I scored a few goals and had a few assists, and in the final, I had a good performance. It was a great feeling helping them to their first championship,” he said. “Football-wise, I really like the city. I really enjoy the football, the style of play. They are more technical, more touches, and as such, and it really suits my game. I feel at home there. Even before you go on the field you are ready to play because you are playing in a country where the people love football, so your game goes up without you doing anything different just because of the energy. So those things motivate me … if nobody is in the stands, you won’t have any motivation. “Apart from Arnett or Waterhouse, you don’t really get that vibe when you are playing here,” he pointed out. “Any player who used to play overseas and comes back here can tell you it’s a different feeling when you are lacing up your boots,” he insisted. Although the player is currently a free agent, he is constantly in contact with his agent and expects to join a team soon, as he is looking for an even better 2016. “I want the best for myself, so, God’s willing, He will provide something. I will just continue to play hard and play my football. If you are playing good football, you are going to stand out no matter where you are, and that is all I want to do: try and improve in any way possible. That is the aim, to get better for 2016,” he added. “At one point (Winfried) Sch‰fer saw one of my videos and showed some interest, but in terms of a follow-up, I didn’t hear anything. “I have been performing internationally from I was little and in the games that I played, I showed I have the potential to be in the national team. “Now the older me has learned a whole heap more, is smarter and more experienced. It’s just to get the opportunity as I am always looking to play for my country,” the player who turns 31 in April told The Gleaner. Priestly has spent the last five years abroad, plying his trade in Azerbaijan, the United States, Finland and Bangladesh and thinks playing for the national team would also give his family a chance to see him perform in person. “Playing for the country would give me an opportunity to let my family come to my games. That is something I look forward to, but it’s up to them (selectors),” he added. The flamboyant and tricky playmaker, who is commonly called ‘Boogie’ locally, was a crowd favourite since joining Antigua GFC at mid-season in October, and he found the experience of playing in a football-mad country like Guatemala very inspiring and encourages local players to try and break into the international market to gain experience in like environments. Almost a decade after playing the last of his six games for the Reggae Boyz, creative midfielder Akeem Priestly still has the hope, desire and will to represent his country. The former Harbour View player just completed the Guatemala top-flight season with Antigua GFC, playing a starring role in their first-ever championship. The well-travelled player, who made his senior international debut at age 19 against Guatemala, believes he still has something to offer at the international level and thinks he is playing well enough to earn a recall. “I did multiple interviews in Guatemala and they (reporters) asked me why I am not playing for the national team. They watch the team (Jamaica) and say what I show I could definitely make the team. But I tell them it’s beyond my control,” admitted Priestly.last_img read more

Digicel Grand Prix helps smaller schools shine – Riley

first_imgKINGSTON:Head coach of Excelsior High School’s track and field programme, David Riley, says the Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championships helps schools with smaller athletics programmes to shine.Pointing to his own team which finished third among the girls teams and in the top five among the boys’ teams in the 2016 Grand Prix series, Riley said higher-quality athletes were able to earn valuable points from fewer events, compared to the annual Boys and Girls’ Championships, in which larger teams win by harnessing more points.Excelsior athletes who performed well at Saturday’s Grand Prix final at G.C. Foster College were Shanice Love, who won the girls’ Under-20 discus with a record throw of 50.39 metres; Andre Garvey, who was third in the boys’ Under-20 discus; Joel Morgan, who won the boys’ Under-16 long jump; Jonathan Smith, who was third in the Under-20 long jump; and Kaliah Jones, who was second in the girls’ Under-17 high jump.”It’s a great opportunity for the schools to go out there and not use 10,000 people to win a championship. It works for teams like ours that have quality athletes, but can’t score 200 and 300 points to win Champs, but because we have six good athletes [we] can go there and compete against the six athletes that are good for the other schools.”It’s a great opportunity for schools that are small and have good-quality athletes and not have to pad their performance. It great for small teams and great for teams with quality,” he said.Edwin Allen girls and St Jago boys were named Grand Prix champion schools.Riley added that the more sponsors that track and field is able to attract, the better.”The Grand Prix is a positive thing for the sport. The sport is part of an entertainment package that we have not really been exploring a lot, and anything that makes it big is going to help the sport,” he said.last_img read more

Dwayne Star, Action Man set for showdown

first_imgWith no trophies at stake at Caymanas Park today, the 3-y-o and up overnight allowance races over the straight-five course move into the spotlight with eight horses declared.Indications are that it will come down to a straight fight between old rivals DWAYNE STAR and ACTION MAN, second and third, respectively, to SHINING LIGHT in the recent Easter Sprint Cup over 1100 metres.The Lorenzo Robinson-trained ACTION MAN showed good speed in the Easter Monday feature, only to be relegated to third by SHINING LIGHT and DWAYNE STAR, both of whom went down to the wire in a photofinish, with SHINING LIGHT prevailing by a head.ACTION MAN, who is well drawn at post position seven, is almost sure to set off in front under the in-form jockey Aaron Chatrie. But DWAYNE STAR will be a lot closer leaving the quarter pole, especially with three-time champion Dane Nelson now taking the ride.IN GOOD NICKAlso going for DWAYNE STAR is the fact that he had won his three previous races before the Easter Sprint, including one over the straight, and with trainer Patrick ‘Wacky’ Lynch presenting him in good nick, I expect DWAYNE STAR to make amends and win ahead of ACTION MAN and SUPERIOR QUALITY.Significantly, Nelson, the leading jockey so far this season, will leave the island next Thursday, April 21, to ride in Canada for several months. The 31-year-old jockey did a stint in Canada for the first time last year, riding 48 winners.Other firm fancies on the nine-race programme are down in class UNBREAK-ABLE under top apprentice Linton Steadman in the second race; WARTINE in the fourth; DYSFUNCT-IONAL in the sixth race for maiden three-year-olds; GENUINE ARTICLE in the seventh; and MANDEYA in the closing $180,000 claiming race over the straight five course to be contested by the maximum 16 starters.last_img read more

Powell poised to extend ring success

first_imgThe Wray and Nephew Contender boxing series’ preliminary round was scheduled to end tonight with a fight that had all the ingredients for a classic battle between two experienced welterweights, Daniel Powell (11-0) and Miguel Antoine (17-4-1).However, a last-minute pullout by Antoine has changed the equation, as his replacement, Charwin Estwick, has a record of no wins and two losses.Powell and Estwick will fight for the final place in the quarter-finals tonight at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium, starting at 9:30.Powell, whose father is Jamaican and flaunts his Jamaican roots, is 31 years old and has been a professional boxer since February 4, 2012. He has won eight fights by technical knockout, one by knockout and two on decision, but has not really met a quality opponent.Tonight is not going to be much different. Estwick, who is 38, was on the Contender roster last year and clashed with Richard Holmes on April 22. That fight went the distance, with one judge giving all six rounds to Holmes and the other two giving Estwick two rounds.Guyanese Estwick, who lives in Barbados, has not had a fight since then, while Powell had his last fight in June last year, so both men have been inactive recently.DEFENSIVE SKILLSEstwick showed in his fight here last year that he has good defensive skills. Against Holmes, who was trying for a knockout from the first round, he managed to tie up his opponent, shortened his range and made it difficult for him to land a knockout punch.It could turn out to be an interesting fight, with Powell trying for a knockout and Estwick using his defensive skills to frustrate his opponent.The winner tonight will join previous winners Holmes, Demarcus Coley, Tsetsi Davis, Revlon Lake, Michael Gardener, Ramel Lewis and Rashid Stevens in the quarter-finals. Four boxers will be seeded and they will draw their opponents for the next round.The winner of the series will, in addition to the title and belt, take home $2 million, the runner-up $500,000, third $250,000 and fourth $200,000.The fight will be broadcast live on TVJ.last_img read more

Sports Briefs

first_imgAussie players want to limit day-night Tests SYDNEY (AP): Cricket Australia’s plan to stage two day-night Tests next season hit another hitch yesterday when the players’ association sought a limit of one. The initial schedule proposed that the third Test between Australia and South Africa in November at Adelaide – the venue for the only previous pink-ball Test – and the series-opener against Pakistan in Brisbane in December be day-night matches. South African players and officials have so far resisted the idea, although Pakistan have committed to playing a day-night match. “The feedback we are receiving from our playing group is that there still remain concerns over day-night Tests,” Australian Cricketers’ Association chief executive Alistair Nicholson said. “While there is acknowledgement that this format may grow the game, at this stage, the players would prefer to only play one day-night Test in 2016-17.” Williamson confirmed as NZ Test captain WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP): Leading batsman Kane Williamson has been confirmed as New Zealand’s 29th Test cricket captain. The 25-year-old Williamson has already captained New Zealand in 34 one-day or Twenty20 Internationals and will now succeed Brendon McCullum as captain in all three formats. New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White said Williamson “has been a leader within the team for a long time and has already shown himself to be an extremely capable captain. He is respected by his peers and the wider cricket community for his professional approach both on and off the field and has a superb cricket brain.” Williamson said he had learnt a lot from McCullum and “the culture that he and Mike (Hesson) have cultivated has been a huge part of this team’s success in recent times”. Ronaldo, Benzema to miss match MADRID (AP): Real Madrid forwards Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema will miss today’s league match as they try to recover from injuries in time to face Manchester City in the return leg of their Champions League semi-final. Coach Zinedine Zidane said that neither of his top two scorers was fit for the trip to Real Sociedad, where Madrid need a win to realistically remain in the Spanish league title race. Madrid trail leaders Barcelona and second-place AtlÈtico Madrid by one point, with three matches to go. Madrid host City on Wednesday after the two sides drew 0-0 in the first leg, where Madrid clearly missed Ronaldo’s spark in attack and where Benzema played only the first half. “I am worried because each time you have a player injured it is difficult,” Zidane said yesterday. “Now, the most important thing is that they completely recover because we cannot take risks with Cristiano and Karim.”last_img read more

Olympic champ tips McLeod for greatness

first_imgDOHA, Qatar:Reigning Olympic 110 metres hurdles champion Aries Merritt believes new kid on the bloc Omar McLeod could go on to become one of the greatest sprint hurdlers ever.McLeod burst on to the international scene last year with a series of impressive performances, ending with a sixth-place finish at the World Championships – his first senior finals.He started out 2016 by winning the 60m World Indoor title, a feat the American Merritt also achieved back in 2012. McLeod also got the better of a very strong field, which included Merritt, David Oliver, and Hansle Parchment to win at his first Diamond League outing in Doha with a world-leading 13.05 seconds.”There are a lot of new age athletes appearing as the old people start to transition out of the sport,” Merritt said. “There is always a new wave of athletes who come around and take their place, and so I think he has the potential to definitely be one of the greatest hurdlers of all time. He is very young, he is very talented, and he just needs to stay healthy and the sky is the limit for him.”At 22 years old, McLeod has a personal best in the 110m hurdles of 12.97 seconds – a time Merritt is impressed with given his age.”I wasn’t running his times when I was his age. I was running like 13.0, so he is already ahead of me at this point of his life,” the 30-year-old Merritt said.HISTORY MADEMcLeod has also impressed in the 100m this year after creating history last month when he dipped below 10 seconds to become the first athlete to run under 10 seconds for the 100m and sub-13 seconds for the 110m hurdles.But while even McLeod admitted to having been stunned by his 9.99 seconds 100m run, Merritt was not.”No, it didn’t catch me by surprise. He has always been quick, and at Arkansas (University), he ran well,” Merritt said. “I feel like sprinting is something that Jamaica does really well. Like, if you are a Jamaican, you are going to be a fast sprinter; it is just in your blood.”Merritt believes the men’s sprint hurdles is as competitive as it has ever been with as many as eight men technically able to run 12.9 seconds. But it is the development of McLeod and 24-year-old Hansle Parchment he will be watching with keen interest.”The sky is definitely the limit for Omar and Hansle. They are both very young; they have both run under 13 seconds way sooner than I did,” Merritt reiterated. “He (McLeod) is not the ideal size for a hurdler, so to speak. Parchment is definitely the ideal size, and so it will be really interesting to see which one of them develops the best in the long run.”As long as Omar is fast, he will always be a good hurdler because the shorter you are, the faster you have to be, and the taller you are, the more technical you have to be.”ryon.jones@gleanerjm.comlast_img read more

Digicel 5K Night Run runs off tonight downtown Kingston

first_imgKINGSTON:a strong contingent of supporters from both the private and public sectors, corporate area schools and the special-needs community are expected to converge on the downtown Kingston waterfront for the fourth staging of the Digicel Imagine 5K Run, which goes live at 7 p.m.Already in high gear ahead of the race this evening, the company is saying thanks for the outpouring of support it has received to date.”It’s really inspiring to see how many persons, groups and organisations have come on board to support the Digicel 5K Run for special needs,” said David Butler, CEO of Digicel Jamaica. “We’re very grateful for the support we’ve received. It’s been tremendous so far and we’re anticipating a very successful event later on tonight.”He added: “When we look at the kind of awareness we’ve been able to generate around the special-needs community through this event and the help that we’ve been able to garner for them, we must thank all our sponsors who really have played a big part in making this happen.”Sponsors of the event include Running Events Jamaica, Jamaica Producers Group, Urban Development Corporation, Express Fitness, Logo Stitch, Marksman, Gatorade, Main Event Entertainment Group, KSAC, National Outdoor Advertising, National Solid Waste Management Authority, Lithographic Printers, Innovative Signs, Red Stripe, WATA, GraceKennedy, Facey Commodities, Mother’s, Dairy Industries and ProComm.Media partnersAdditionally, local media houses, including the RJR Communications Group, KLAS, Sun City Radio, SportsMax, Irie FM, Love 101, Mello FM, Power 106, Business Access TV, Nationwide News Network, The Gleaner Company Ltd and The Star, have partnered with Digicel in a big way this year to help drive the awareness of this very worthy initiative.”Over the past three years, the Digicel Foundation has been able to make a real impact on improving the quality of life of persons with special needs in Jamaica,” said Butler. “None of this could have been possible without the support that we continue to get.”To facilitate the race’s 7 p.m. start time, road closures will occur at 6:30 p.m., so participants are encouraged to head out to the venue early and participate in the pre-race warm-up sessions in the Digicel parking lot. To get further updates and information on race day activities, persons may visit Digicel’s social media pages.The race will officially start following the singing of the National Anthem by the talented Kimiela ‘Candy’ Isaacs, who is also a member of the special-needs community.last_img read more

TOTTENHAM VS SUNDERLAND

first_imgTOTTENHAM (4-2-3-1)LLORIS, WALKER, ALDERWIRELED, VERTONGHEN, DAVIES,DIER, DEMBELE,LAMELA, ALLI, ERIKSEN, KANESUNDERLAND (5-3-2)DEFOE, WATMORE,JOHNSON, M’VILA, TOIVONEN, VAN AANHOLT, KABOUL, O’SHEA, COATES, JONES,PANTILIMONSunderland arrive in confident mood after winning 4-2 against 10-man Swansea City on Wednesday, their second win in a row in the Barclays Premier League. They owe their latest three points to Jermain Defoe’s hat-trick, the fourth of his career in the Premier League – only 11 players have claimed more. And the Black Cats have netted seven goals in two games – more than in their previous eight matches combined (just six), They are still in the bottom three but just one point from safety.Spurs, meanwhile, are fifth despite losing 1-0 at home to Leicester City on Wednesday. They are back at White Hart Lane where they have conceded just eight goals. And They are unbeaten in their last 11 Premier League clashes against the Black Cats (home and away), winning eight and drawing just two.In September, a young Tottenham side won 1-0 at the Stadium of Light thanks to an 82nd-minute winner from Ryan Mason.Former Spurs favourite Defoe returns to White Hart Lane for the second time since leaving the club for Toronto FC, in Canada, in July 2014.last_img read more

Changes coming for ‘Champs’

first_imgWhen the 2017 ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls Athletics Championships gets under way in March, a new event will be added to the programme as the Class 2 boys will now compete separately in the 400 metres hurdles.It was previously an open event, which meant that athletes from any class could compete, but at a special meeting yesterday involving the executive members of the planning committee for the championships, the decision was taken for this change.Several weeks ago, ISSA had sent letters to the respective school principals regarding five new proposals for the upcoming championships, with consultation with coaches and members of the organising committee of Champs also taking place at a meeting at Wolmer’s Girls’ school last month where several recommendations were made by the coaches.Field event athletes will now be able to do three events in this discipline or two field events and two relays. Track athletes will be restricted to two individual events and with a maximum involvement in two relays allowed.Unlike previous years when females used to compete in the heptathlon and up to three other individual events, this will no longer be allowed as heptathlon athletes will now only be allowed to do one other event.Class 3 girls will not be able to compete in the Steeplechase and 3000 metres anymore as this will now be restricted to Classes 1 and 2 only. At the same time the proposal to exclude Class 2 boys from the 5000 metres will not happen as both Classes 1 and 2 boys will be allowed to compete in the Steeplechase and 5000 metres.According to a reliable source, the decisions taken at the special meeting yesterday will be taken to the principals later this month for ratification.last_img read more

Isner, Harrison advance to BB&T Atlanta Open final

first_imgFilipinos 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 LeBron James scores 31 points, Lakers beat Rockets “It was a very good match. Absolutely nothing to complain about today,” Isner said. “On and off the court in pretty quick fashion and I certainly will be ready to go tomorrow. I feel great physically, maybe the best I have felt in quite some time. More importantly than that, I am pretty confident as well.”The 32-year-old Isner won the Hall of Fame Open last week in Newport, Rhode Island, for his 11th career title — all at the ATP World Tour 250 level. He has won seven consecutive tour matches and held for 69 straight service games.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’Muller reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals this month.“He made it very tough for me today,” Miller said. “I don’t feel like I played a bad match. I maybe didn’t serve well enough today, but it’s also because of him. He put a lot of pressure on me. It was very tough out there today. All credit to him. He played a great match.” Kawhi Leonard, Clippers rally to beat Pelicans Usain Bolt is down to his last, blazing curtain call Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Harrison beat fifth-seeded Kyle Edmund of England 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-4. Harrison won the Memphis Open in February for his first career title. Edmund beat top-seeded Jack Sock on Friday night.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Indian national gunned down in Camarines Sur MOST READcenter_img FILE PHOTO – John Isner of the US returns to Croatia’s Marin Cilic during their men’s singles first round tennis match at the ATP Aegon Championships tennis tournament at Queen’s Club in west London on June 20, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / GLYN KIRKATLANTA — Second-seeded John Isner beat third-seeded Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 6-4, 6-2 on Saturday to reach the BB&T Atlanta Open final for the fifth straight year and the seventh time in eight years.Isner lost to Nick Kyrgios last year at Atlantic Station after winning the hard-court event three straight years. The 6-foot-10 former University of Georgia star will face fourth-seeded Ryan Harrison in an all-American final.ADVERTISEMENT Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ McGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return ‘I’m out!’: PewDiePie releases last video before taking break from YouTube LATEST STORIES 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more