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  • Longevity made ’98 team better, says Oral Tracey

    first_img FLAWED PREMISE Comparisons between the current Reggae Boyz, who finished second in the CONCACAF Gold Cup and the 1998 team that qualified for the World Cup Finals in France continue to crave the indulgence of local football fans. It is always difficult, if not impossible, to credibly compare sports teams across eras. But I would easily rate the 1998 World Cup qualifying team as better because it performed at a high level over a longer period of time, since consistency is such a crucial index of true quality. This 2015 team basically won the Caribbean Cup, played in the Copa America, and then had a dream run in this year’s Gold Cup, all within a one-year stretch. They were hardly outstanding before then and we don’t know what they will do going forward. We must also never lose sight of the fact that the 1998 bunch actually qualified for the World Cup finals and went on to beat Japan at the showpiece event. The case that the current team is better than the 1998 team is hinged on the claim that more players in the 2015 team are playing or have played at a higher level than the players in the 1998 team. That is a flawed premise for the simple reason that a better group of players does not necessarily translate into a better team. It is much more about how effectively and efficiently each group functions as a unit and not about which player played at which club, or in which league. So the fact that Adrian Mariappa, Wes Morgan and Michael Hector currently play in the EPL or in League One in England, while Ian ‘Pepe’ Goodison, Durrent ‘Tatty’ Brown and Linval ‘Rudi’ Dixon played for local clubs does not mean they were superior as a functional unit. The consensus seems to be that the two teams, at their best, pretty much cancel out each other in terms of defensive organisation and tenacity but, again, in terms of formation and structure the 1998 team was more difficult to breach in that they played with a sweeper in ‘Tatty’ Brown and a ultra-defensive central-defensive midfielder in Peter Cargill. The 2015 team plays a flat back four, with a central-defensive midfielder in Rodolph Austin, who ventures into attack much more that the average central midfielder. Therefore, comparing both teams in their area of strength, defence, the 1998 team was a better functional unit. I think the idea of comparing goals conceded between the two eras would also be subject to ridicule because, again, all things do not remain constant and equal. The 1998 team had to contend with playing in the Azteca stadium in Mexico City not once, but twice in the campaign, where it was not unusual to concede upwards of five and six goals per game. This team never had to visit the Azteca and a rampant Mexico team during this their dream run. With the midfielders basically cancelling out each other and let’s say, team unity and camaraderie are equal between both teams, there are two big differences that make the 1998 team better. One is the presence of X-factor players such as Walter Boyd and Andy Williams, and even Deon Burton, who all provided game-changing moments of individual brilliance along the campaign, which, when combined, eventually propelled the team to the World Cup Finals. The current squad, by comparison, is lacking in X-factor players. The other big difference between the teams is leadership. Austin is the clear leader of the team and even with Morgan, who is the captain of an EPL team, the 2015 team is thin in leadership. The 1998 team was blessed with strong leaders throughout. Warren Barrett was the official captain but, in ‘Pepe’ Goodison, ‘Tatty’ Brown, ‘Rudi’ Dixon, Fitzroy Simpson and Cargill, were all extraordinary leaders of men. That 1998 team was basically a team of leaders. When all is said and done, I think nine times out of 10, the 2015 team would not score on the 1998 defensive unit. While the 1998 offensive unit with the skill and brilliance of Boyd, in tandem with the tenacity of Burton and Paul Hall, I think the World Cup qualifying team of ’98 would find a way to score when it mattered most and win against the 2015 team. In such a case, the better team would have won.last_img read more

  • More sports in brief

    first_imgRafinha out for six months BARCELONA, Spain (AP): Barcelona says midfielder Rafinha will be sidelined for six months after having surgery on torn ligaments in his right knee. Rafinha injured his leg during last Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at Roma in the Champions League. Cowboys’ Romo likely to sit out two months with broken collarbone IRVING, Texas (AP): Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo is expected to miss about two months with a broken left collarbone. The loss of Romo in Sunday’s 20-10 victory at Philadelphia means the defending NFC East champions Cowboys (2-0) will be without their starting quarterback and All-Pro wide receiver Dez Bryant possibly through October. Coach Jason Garrett said Monday that tests revealed no ligament damage for Romo after the second broken collarbone of his career. The other was in 2010, and he missed the final 10 games of the season. 2 Aussie rugby players hospitalised SYDNEY, Australia (AP): Two players in Australia’s National Rugby League were hospitalised early yesterday following an overdose of painkilling medication. The players, Aaron Gray and Dylan Walker, had taken too many of the painkillers they were prescribed after undergoing operations last week following the end of their season, said John Lee, chief executive of their club, the South Sydney Rabbitohs. He said there was no evidence of illegal drug use by either player.center_img Gabriel’s ban withdrawn LONDON, England (AP): Arsenal defender Gabriel Paulista has had a three-match ban for violent conduct withdrawn by the English Football Association following a successful appeal by the club after his red card against Chelsea. But the FA said Tuesday that the 24-year-old Brazilian still faces a separate charge of improper conduct as he did not leave the pitch immediately after being shown the red card by referee Mike Dean on Saturday.last_img read more

  • MBU close to hiring new coach

    first_imgMontego Bay United (MBU) are close to acquiring the services of a new coach following the recent departure of American Tim Hankinson, who guided them to the top of the Red Stripe Premier League table. Hankinson was in charge as MBU climbed to a 10-game unbeaten run to close out the first round of the national domestic league. The Gleaner understands that the club is currently scouting three coaches, one from the United States, one from South America and the other from here in Jamaica. It is also understood that the club could make a decision soon. “We had a scout checking overseas for a new coach,” confirmed club manager Sandra Christie. Montego Bay United have hired two coaches from overseas since Donovan Duckie departed the club two seasons ago. Carlos Garcia took over from interim coach Dean Weatherly, but was then fired by the club in April this year. The Brazilian has since taken up a position with the national programme. Hankinson was hired in August, and he guided the team through the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League competition, with the former national champions impressing under his leadership. That success carried over into the Red Stripe Premier League where, after losing their season opener 0-2 to newly promoted Portmore United, the club went on an unbeaten streak that included seven wins and three draws to top the league table with 24 points. During the first round, they scored 25 goals and conceded only nine. Meantime, the 60-year-old American is still in contact with the club. He had a recent meeting with the players and makes frequent check-ins on their training sessions. Orville Powell, the club’s owner, has indicated that the club is looking to build upon the foundation set by the American. Montego Bay United have been among the league’s most successful clubs over the past three seasons. They are 2013-2014 champions, and last season made it to the final where they were beaten by Arnett Gardens.last_img read more

  • DSP Live in Jamaica, At the United Nations Pageant World Finals

    first_imgLiberian Afro-R&B singer DSP is singing to the world this week (June1-7, 2014) as part of the United Nations Pageant World Finals 2014, in Kingston Jamaica.The singer is also expected to perform at the Liberian Music Awards in Atlanta, Georgia (USA) on June 14, 2014, where he has also picked up nominations for numerous categories  during this most anticipated eventcelebrating Liberian music.DSP, who was born Ernesto Herbert will be visiting Jamaica for the very first time, and will be standing by and equipped to present his recent hit single “Promise”.“I’ll be performing Promise and one other Jamaican song, the one that’s written on the poster. Going to Jamaica is an opportunity for me because it’s not a small place; everyone wants to go there. I feel confident about going out there to perform, doing a lot of reading to know how other people did it and came out successful over there. I’m learning the standard of how it works out fine to be able to put out the best. I don’t want to get out there and guess but do it how it is supposed to be done professionally,” DSP articulated.Additionally, DSP recalls being astounded at the news of his scheduled Jamaican performance when his acting manager Junda Morris-Kennedy brought the news to his attention, though he says he wouldn’t miss any opportunity coming from his manager.“Junda told me about Jamaica and I was surprised, thinking it was a joke, but she said it was real! Women from different countries will be taking part in the pageant but no one is representing Liberia. I know of 9 different countries partaking including Ghanaians and Nigerians. I can learn from it (the visit), that’s what I’m doing now, learning from what other people are doing that are already in the game.” He articulated.Morris, DSP’s manager, highlighted during an interview with LIB Life that her duty as a manager is to help create opportunities for her artist in getting gigs. “Well as his PR company, I seek out opportunities for my clients to be recognized internationally. The organizer of the pageant, who is a business acquaintance, had heard DSP’s music via my newsletter and reached out to me for him to perform at the United Nations Pageant Finals. I tried to get a Liberian representative but the people in Liberia are not serious. I am a pageant production guru and every time I try to reach out to people to send Liberian representatives to international events, everybody is not serious,” Morris laments.Meanwhile, DSP says he’s going to give all he’s got to make sure that Liberia is remembered as having talented musicians wherever he goes. His planned trip to the United States of America will give the “Carolina” songster a chance to do just that.“ I’m being nominated for the Liberian Music awards slated for June 14, 2014 as new artist, best new male artist of Africa and best new video. Of course I’ll be performing “Promise” and I’m so ready. It’s just another opportunity that I have to prove myself. I see it more like an opportunity than something to be afraid or nervous of.”He further added that he will do his best to get more fans while staying in the states, but has no intention of wearing out his welcome by making himself too available or seen.“I’m practicing, reading about mistakes, how to posture your looks and everything that relates to performing. I read bout it and learn the arrangements in dances and then I practice it. I want everything to be prepared before I get there. I spoke with my manager Junda and she says that she will have it all set. I don’t want to be seen everywhere when I get out there because I’m targeting those people, if they see you to much they will get less interest in seeing you or your performance,” he said in closing.Also, DSP has some big plans while being away.“ I’ll be working on some other things [including] some videos out there, and some photo shoots. I’ll also be doing the remix of “Carolina” with a Cameroonian girl,” He smiled.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

  • Parties to return to court in December

    first_imgAG appeal of GECOM ruling…“logistical nightmare” concerns raised by lawyerParties in the Attorney General’s appeal of the High Court ruling preventing persons’ names from being removed from the Register of Registrants have been given until December 9, 2019, to return to the Appeal Court make their case.The hearing began before Chancellor of the Judiciary, Yonnette Cummings-Edwards and fellow Justices Rishi Persaud and Dawn Gregory, on Monday. Appearing for the bar association amicus curiae was its President, Teni Housty, while Attorney General Basil Williams and Solicitor General Nigel Hawke were also present.The Court of AppealInitially absent, however, were representatives for Attorney-at-Law Christopher Ram, the first named respondent. In addition, representation for Chief Elections Officer Keith Lowenfield was also absent, although Lowenfield himself was in the courtroom. Eventually, however, the respective parties did arrive.These absences led Justice Cummings-Edwards to enquire when the summons were delivered to the respondents. It was pointed out by Hawke that the parties received their notifications on September 23, 2019.Justice Cummings-Edwards subsequently informed them that the parties will have to report to the Court of Appeal registrar within six weeks of Tuesday. The hearing will continue on December 9, 2019.Following the proceedings, lawyer for Christopher Ram, Kamal Ramkarran expressed confidence that his client would be vindicated. At the same time, he noted with concern what the AG is actually trying to achieve with his appeal.According to Ramkarran, if the State is actually successful, it could result in a logistical nightmare that could set back the work of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and delay the holding of elections.“The Chief Justice ruled that it was unconstitutional to take people off the list if they were registered. And what the AG is trying to do is get a stay of execution of that ruling. The law is that it’s unconstitutional to remove people. And he’s trying to get the court of appeal to say you can still take them off on a temporary basis, until his appeal is heard.”“If the court agrees with the AG, then it is going to delay elections because the whole list will have to be looked at again. You would have to determine who was not there and remove them. It’s a logistical nightmare!” Ramkarran said.One of the major contestations in the appeal is the residency requirement for being registered. Acting Chief Justice Roxane George had ruled that persons, once registered, could not be removed without just cause.In the AG’s appeal, however, the Chief Justice is accused of being misconceived in law. In fact, there are 16 points in the appeal in which the AG claims the CJ misinterpreted the law. According to Ramkarran, such arguments go against the fundamental rights of Guyanese to vote.“Once you are a citizen of Guyana, you have a fundamental right to vote in the elections… suppose someone is mining in the interior or not at home when the people came to register? You just remove them off the list?”With elections set to take place on March 2, 2020, GECOM has been working towards producing the Official List of Electors necessary to conduct elections. The entity included thousands of names from the controversial House-to-House Registration exercise.However, there are many who did not participate for varying reasons, including being out of the jurisdiction and out of a belief that the exercise was illegal as it sought to delay elections. Claims and Objections (C&O) is presently ongoing, in order to produce the OLE.Last week, Opposition-nominated Commissioner Sase Gunraj told reporters after a meeting that Chief Elections Officer (CEO) Keith Lowenfield updated them that more than 2100 transactions had been recorded at the time during the C&O exercise.He further related that they are still trying to get more details on other aspects such as the H2H data, as well as the overseas fingerprint cross-matching, before any decisions are taken. According to the Opposition-nominated Commissioner, the encoding (entering data into GECOM’s database) of the H2H data is scheduled to finish by Tuesday.The preceding week, Government-nominated Commissioner Charles Corbin had told reporters that the encoded data will be available for scrutiny before the C&O exercise concludes in November.last_img read more

  • Under 17 Northern B.C. girls volleyball team finish in tier two at Nationals

    first_imgArie Kalkman is the coach of the girls squad. He says that his team played well despite encountering some strong teams from Alberta.“We met up with several teams that we had to compete against to make it to first in provincials, and we won in a fairly strong manner,” he says. “Of course, there was a few other teams since it was the national tournament, and there was some stronger teams. The whole second division was mostly Alberta teams. We got into good competition and lost some of those matches, which was fair, and the ones we were capable of winning, we won.”Kalkman adds that despite a struggle to kick off the weekend, his team bounced back the rest of the way.- Advertisement -“The first day there are three games played, and we lost those, so that put us in the B pool on the second day,” he says. “We then won all three which put us up to the losers of the A pool.”The team encountered Quebec in the knock out round, and despite losing, the team felt like it was a winnable game.“We came out a little over focused. We played okay, but I think the whole team knows that we didn’t have 100 per cent there just because we were a little frozen up.”Advertisement The team is finished with competitive tournaments for the year, but will continue with various drop-ins until the end of the school year.last_img read more

  • Trackers to be back on the ice in late August for pre-season camp

    first_imgThe N.E. B.C. and Yukon Trackers will be holding two camps prior to the start of the upcoming hockey season. Both sessions will be at the Taylor Arena with the first being held August 28-30, and the second running from September 11-13.All northeast district players, and Yukon midget players are able to register and lace up the skates for the first camp.The cost to participate is $150. Completed forms can be sent to: NEBC Tracker Flyers Box 1032, Dawson Creek B.C., V1G 4H9.- Advertisement -To download the registration form click here.last_img read more

  • Give a holiday gift to the environment

    first_imgTammy Hrab, communications co-ordinator for NEAT spoke on this issue.[asset|aid=3378|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=4fbc79764134649b4dd024b6751a9646-NEAT 1_1_Pub.mp3] Another method to make the holidays greener is to consider the gifts themselves. Rather than giving materialistic presents, instead, NEAT promotes giving “gift experiences.” Concert tickets, trips and lift tickets for ski hills are only a few examples of this innovative idea.The holidays are a time of fun and creativity. When planning your holidays, be creative and consider the environment. It will benefit everyone. Advertisement When considering holiday gifts, think about giving one more present this year, to planet Earth.By changing only few habits, it is easy to make the holidays more environmentally friendly, a cause which the Northern Environmental Action Team (NEAT) is attempting to preach.- Advertisement -NEAT stresses that one major factor in making the holidays more environmentally friendly is the use of gift wrapping. Wrapping paper is environmentally destructive due to the high level of material in the paper that is not recyclable.Some alternatives to wrapping paper are the use of holiday gift bags, tin cans and brown paper, which is recyclable and just as easy to decorate. NEAT also provided some interesting and creative alternatives to wrapping paper. For example, washing out a chip bag and turning it inside out. The shiny, silver interior provides a wonderful substitute to commercial gift wrap and is environmentally friendly.One crucial way to lessen our impact on the Earth during the holidays is to use alternative light sources for people’s homes.Advertisementlast_img read more

  • Talking her way to Turkey

    first_imgAlthough Biery works on other issues, including transportation, she is perhaps best known to Palmdale residents for the Rose Parade. Volunteers who worked on the city’s floats the past two years know Biery as the energetic woman in the blue jeans and sweat shirt who greeted them and kept them pumped up during the day, sometimes leading cheers with a megaphone. “I tapped into all of my experiences in talking to large groups,” Biery said of the Jaycees competition. “Instead of a megaphone, it was a microphone. Instead of blue jeans, I was in a business suit.” As the winner of the speech competition, Biery got to address the 650-member audience, making her a bit nervous. Biery said she took a few deep breaths and got a glass of water to help compose herself. “I thought, I’ve done this before and I can do this again,” Biery said. “And I wanted to prove they picked the right person.” Biery was one of 16 Jaycees representing California at the competition. Biery is a member of the Santa Clarita Valley chapter, which also includes Antelope Valley members. The Jaycees is an organization for professionals ages 21 to 40 that provides social, networking and professional development opportunities. The organization also conducts community outreach and philanthropic projects. PALMDALE Laura Biery, known to Palmdale residents for organizing the city’s awarding-winning Tournament of Roses floats the past two years, has scored a couple of personal awards for public speaking. Biery, an administrative analyst for the city who lives in Canyon Country, won two first-place awards in the speech and debate competitions at the National Convention of the Jaycees in St. Louis, Mo., held March13 to17. Biery will go on to compete in the Junior Chamber International World Congress this November in Turkey. Biery said her experience in organizing the city’s Rose Parade floats helped her in the competition. That experience included talking to large groups of volunteers, float builders and members of the Tournament of Roses Association, and speaking publicly at City Council meetings about the projects. In the speech competition, competitors were given a topic just minutes before they were to talk. Biery’s first topic was, “Who is a star to you?” “They give you a topic right there and give you a few minutes to compose yourself,” Biery said. “It’s about thinking on your feet.” For her “stars,” Biery chose former City Manager Bob Toone; her father, Jim, who is the public works director for the city of Buena Park; and Jenny Ketchepaw, the 2006 president of the Santa Clarita Valley Jaycees chapter. “Watching Laura truly excel at the Jaycees National Convention was a privilege and an honor,” Ketchepaw said. “I have watched her grow into an exceptional young woman. I was truly inspired by her speech. Her continued dedication to her work, her family, and her Jaycees chapter is amazing.” Her second speech involved applying a quotation from the Chinese philosopher Confucius: “If I hear, I forget; if I see, I remember; if I do, I understand.” Biery applied the quote to her experiences with the Jaycees, saying she had heard about the organization and had seen members at different events. “It wasn’t until I finally joined the Jaycees that I understood the impact they have, not only on the individual, but in the community.” In the debate competition, Biery was part of a team that included Todd Hampton and Dawn Abasta. The topics included whether smoking should be banned in public places – a debate the city of Palmdale has gone through in recent months. “It was wonderful,” Biery said of the topic. “I had seen all the research the city had done and heard the individuals from the public who came up to testify.” In winning the competitions, Biery will have half of her expenses paid for the Junior Chamber International World Congress in Antalya, Turkey. The event will be held Nov.5 to11. Biery said the event won’t interfere with preparation for Palmdale’s float for the 2008 Tournament of Roses. james.skeen@dailynews (661) 267-5743 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

  • Panel accepting applications

    first_imgSANTA CLARITA – Applications are being accepted for eight open positions on the Newhall Redevelopment Committee, the citizens’ group helping guide renovations in Santa Clarita’s oldest business district. The 13-member group advises the city Redevelopment Agency on redevelopment and revitalization in Newhall and is helping implement a detailed area plan. Applications are available at the city clerk’s office on the third floor of Santa Clarita City Hall, 23920 Valencia Blvd., and online at The deadline to apply is 5p.m. May1. Applicants must be at least 18 and obtain three letters of recommendation to submit with their applications to the clerk’s office. For details, check the Web site or call (661)255-4391. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more