Six-wicket hauls Will improve Most of Jamaica’s good cricketers, as happened this year, play cricket for four or five weeks a year, in March and April, but what happens in the months of May, June, July, and August? Those are the months for cricket in Jamaica, and the more we play, properly, with the best up against the best, the more we will improve. We need a long season annually in which to develop our cricket, for the best to play against the best, on good pitches and on bad pitches, in rain or shine, for the batsmen to really learn to bat, for the bowlers to really learn to bowl, (fast leg breaks, googlies, et cetera), and for everybody to learn how to field properly. We need a competition of the best eight or ten clubs playing all over Jamaica in one league of return matches. Those clubs will eventually attract the best players, and with the clubs falling in line with good work habits and good discipline, with the players playing the right atmosphere and learning from it, the Jamaica team should be selected from these players. So many players do not train properly, so many players are not coached properly, so many players believe that they are good, and so many people believe that there are many talented players in this country. I do not know, but I do not believe so. But for a few, I do not see them. What I see every day are batsmen who drive beautifully through the covers one or two times, batsmen who play a cut shot or two, and get out for 10 or 20 runs. I also see bowlers who bowl on a length most times, but who never attempt to bowl something like a “wrong ‘un” or even a “flipper”. Although a few of our batsmen look good, even when not in the nets, I have not seen, for a long, long time, a batsman bat for a day or a team bat out a day in a Senior Cup match. What matters really is that cricket has been losing ground over the years, and, in losing ground in its popularity and its influence, it has, like the West Indies, lost its strength. Cricket needs some serious action if it is to survive, and if it is to make a U-turn and show some improvement while really developing itself. Cricket needs to divide itself into three groups, into those who play for fun and exercise, those youngsters who play to get better, and those who play seriously with the aim of doing so professionally at the first-class level and beyond. Jamaica’s cricket needs many competitions for its many players. The Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA), however, needs to spearhead one long two-day competition so that its few talented players can train daily to play against each other on Saturdays and Sundays in return matches for a season of 14 or 18 matches. Rome was not built in a day, and the standard of Jamaica’s cricket cannot and will not be built in a day, regardless of who thinks so. Losing ground The Senior Cup cricket season is over, and congratulations to Melbourne on being crowned champions, and to St. Thomas for reaching their first final. The question may well be asked of Melbourne, however, and justifiable so, and especially by cricket lovers, champions of what? The season has come and gone. It lasted only a few weeks, between late March and early May, and it only lasted until May because of a protest which extended the season by one week. Melbourne, having won the cup for the umpteenth time, although not for some time, may not mind it. They certainly will not mind winning the $500,000 prize money, and neither will the one or two players who did really well as batsmen, bowlers, and as fielders, throughout the exercise. With 23 teams playing in the competition which was divided into four groups, probably because of the lack of money, with each team playing four or five matches before going in the quarter-finals, the semi-finals, and the final, the competition was too short, much too short at that. Whatever is said about Jamaica’s cricket, regardless of how many people play the game, regardless of how many competitions there are around the country, and regardless of who wins these competitions, Jamaica’s cricket is poor, and it is getting weaker and weaker. Once upon a time, cricket was the number one sport in Jamaica. Today, it is not so. Today, and it really does not matter, it is number three, behind football and track and field, or track and field and football. Some of our batsmen score hundreds in local cricket. They hit the ball to all parts of the field, and some of bowlers take five or six-wicket hauls by just attempting to bowl wicket to wicket, and that is fine. Put a Jamaica cap on their heads, however, send them out to bat or to bowl for Jamaica, and they look, most of them, like misfits. Jamaica is not a rich country, and it cannot do the things that others can do. It can, with a little planning, however, do a lot more to develop our cricket, or, at least, to make it as good as it was once upon a time with what we have. We do not need to talk about longer terms in office. Two years is a long time, and neither do we need to propose term limits for officers. Jamaica is too small a country. The JCA needs to talk to the Government also. The Senior Cup should be the biggest competition in the land, and, therefore, it should carry the highest prize money. If cricket is to progress, you cannot have a situation where a competition of less quality deals out a greater prize money, and where some players, definitely less talented, will, if there is clash, choose the competition which promises more money. Congrats Melbourne, and well done St. Thomas, but better, from cricket administrators, for cricket and for cricketers, is needed, and urgently.
Gervacio mends fences with Suzara as she returns to Foton in PSL Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio 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 respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Silver said the playing of the national anthem has always been a time for respect and reflection — even in a league where 25 percent of the players are not American — and recalled that many teams locked arms last season.He wants them to continue showing unity during the anthem — but to do it while standing.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSFederer blasts lack of communication on Australian Open smog“It’s been a rule as long as I’ve been involved with the league, and my expectation is that our players will continue to stand for the anthem,” he said.Silver didn’t say what would happen if any players refuse to stand, adding: “If that were to happen, we’ll deal with it when it happens.” “I felt it was corrosive to this league,” he said.The second-worst team has a 19.9 percent to win the lottery and the third seed a 15.6 percent chance under the current format that will remain through next June’s draft.The board voted to allow Silver to fine teams who violate the league’s new guidelines about resting players. Teams can’t sit healthy players for high-profile, nationally televised games, and fines for violating that can be for at least $100,000.The rules also say that unless there are unusual circumstances, teams should not rest multiple healthy players for the same game or rest healthy players when playing on the road.The league office had long resisted getting involved in coaches’ decisions about resting players. But with its national TV partners paying the league billions, Silver felt he had to act after LeBron James and stars from the Golden State Warriors sat out nationally televised games last season.“It’s not a position we want the league to be in,” Silver said. “It ultimately is my hope that the rules go in the drawer and that teams step up here and see that there is a larger obligation to our fans, to the basketball community.”The board also talked about current events, meeting less than a week after President Donald Trump opted against inviting the Warriors to the White House after All-Star Stephen Curry said he didn’t want to go.Trump had criticized NFL players for their anthem protests in a speech the night before, and hundreds responded in games Sunday and Monday by kneeling during the anthem.Silver thinks NBA players have other opportunities, either by continuing their community service efforts or through the media, to make their voices heard.“I’m hoping once again that this league can play a constructive role there,” Silver said. He spoke following the NBA’s Board of Governors meetings, during which owners passed rules designed to prevent healthy players from sitting out games, and teams from losing games on purpose to improve their draft position.Under the new draft lottery rules, the teams with the three worst records will all have 14 percent odds to land the No. 1 pick when the changes are implemented with the 2019 draft.The team with the worst record previously had 25 percent odds to win the lottery and could fall to the No. 4 spot in the draft. Now that team call tumble all the way to fifth.The lottery changes were to discourage tanking, the practice of losing games on purpose in an effort to improve draft odds. The Philadelphia 76ers relied on the tactic heavily in recent years and the league felt it needed to step in and urge teams to always be competitive.Silver felt teams had even begun feeling pressure to use the strategy of fielding poor squads and building through the draft.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson LATEST STORIES DAY6 is for everybody Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Mos Burger to open in Manila; teases with a pop-up View comments NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017 in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)NEW YORK — Adam Silver expects NBA players to continue standing for the national anthem.Not only because it’s a league rule, but because they are aware of what it means in what the commissioner believes is a divided America.“Many of our players have spoken out already about their plan to stand for the anthem,” Silver said Thursday. “And I think they understand how divisive an issue it is in our society right now.”ADVERTISEMENT How to help the Taal evacuees In ‘Jojo Rabbit,’ Comedy and Drama Collide Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scene Redemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie Thompson OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson MOST READ