NEW VERSION OF CRICKET The International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20 tournament of 2016 is behind us and despite many events of its kind – and many successful ones at that – the world of cricket can truthfully say that this one was a tremendous success. Maybe it was the different types of pitches found in India this time around and maybe it was the different kinds of bowling, especially the presence of right-arm leg-spin bowling, which made it so successful. Maybe it was the quality of batting throughout, the tournament and the brilliance of the fielding which lifted the standard and thus the excitement throughout and maybe it was the energy and performance of the minnows which caused it all. Maybe it was, in the final analysis, the performance of the big hitters of the West Indies which made the difference and the stylish and dramatic way in which they ended the tournament on a winning note, with the ball disappearing into the outskirts of Kolkata. Maybe it was simply an improving mindset by the players. Whatever it was that caused it, it was a tournament to remember and to duplicate and, at least, the next time around. For years now, and but for a few changes, cricket has remained the same. It has been basically the same teams, with nothing new to add spice and colour to the scenery. Cricket, it is said, is a hard game to learn, but that is Test cricket. RANKED NO. 3 T20 cricket is ranked number three in the general scheme of things. It is played regularly in local competitions, hardly in international competitions and up to last month, it was played every two years as a world tournament. Regrettably, it is scheduled for every four years as of the next time. T20 cricket is big business. It is, however, easy to play, it is fun, it caters to the spectators, and although the players, including the West Indies players, or most of them, prefer the Test version, it is the most popular format today. T20 cricket is ideal as a tool to spread the game. The minnows can upset the ‘big boys’ occasionally, just as how The Netherlands defeated England in both the 50-over World Cup and the World Twenty 20 and just as how Afghanistan defeated the West Indies a few weeks ago in the World Twenty20. Those defeats were embarrassing for England and that defeat was also embarrassing for the soon-to-be crowned world champions, West Indies, a few days ago. They added to the excitement of the tournament, however, and as far as The Netherlands and Afghanistan are concerned, they contributed to the growth of the game. The ICC has a duty to its minnows and a responsibility to cricket to let them loose and offer them more opportunities. This is the time to allow cricket to grow. There is a new version of cricket, however. It is T20 cricket. It is taking over like wildfire and it has given those in charge the opportunity to spread their wings, to cover the whole wide world. For years now, there has been a call to add more teams to cricket and there has always been a counterclaim by the ‘big shots’ of cricket that the game would be too one-sided if that was done. There is no doubt that was true. Can you imagine a Test match between Australia and Canada at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and, at end of day two, at the end of the first innings, the scoreboard read: Australia 400 for one or two declared, Canada70 and 20 for five? Who would watch this match and who would pay for the exercise? Based on their performances over the years and their performance this year, however, the minnows, or some of them Ireland, the Netherlands, Oman, Afghanistan, Scotland, Hong Kong and Kenya, deserve their places. And so do others like Papua, New Guinea, Canada and the USA. If they never get to compete, no one will ever know of them, just as we would never have known of players like Mohammad Shahzar; Afghanistan’s batsman Kyle Coetzer; Scotland’s batsman Zeeshan Maqsood; Oman’s batsman Dawlat Zadran; Afghanistan’s pacer and one of the real finds of the tournament, Afghanistan’s young right-arm leg-spinner Rashid Khan. And what of countries like China, Argentina and even Brazil if they so desire? T20 cricket is made for them.
Chelsea boss Lampard pleased with 2-goal Batshuayi: We need himby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea boss Frank Lampard was pleased with striker Michy Batshuayi for his two goals in their Carabao Cup win over Grimsby.The Blues ran out 7-1 winners to set up a round of 16 tie with Manchester United.Lampard said, “He has worked hard and trained well. He came on at Wolves and made an impact, came on against Liverpool and nearly made an impact and that is great for me when you give a message and someone shows they can train daily and improve there. “Michy has talent, he can hold the ball up and use both feet and can score goals, and he is important for us. He got his chance and scored goals tonight which is good because we need options up front.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersOpinionAbout the authorChris BeattieShare the loveHave your say Christian Pulisic flop? Why the US whiz on outer at Chelseaby Chris Beattie23 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveCOMMENT: He can’t say he was never told. Christian Pulisic and his far from hoped for start at Chelsea. The advice now being relayed through the press is spot on. Well, at least some of it is…First, let’s put the fantasists to one side. There’s no anti-American bias at Cobham. And there’s no belief amongst the coaching staff, including manager Frank Lampard, that Pulisic is the wrong fit for his system. Such claims, as we’ve seen in recent days, is simply the stuff of mischief-making.Indeed, the opposite is true. Lampard and his backroom team know they have a potential world-beater on their hands. They know the ability Pulisic possesses. But they need the American to come out of his shell more. To stretch himself amongst his teammates and on the training the pitch. “He needs to fight for it”, as one Cobham source told this column a week ago.As mentioned, no-one doubts Pulisic’s ability inside Chelsea. Like us on the outside, they’ve already seen it in glimpses in preseason and the limited action Lampard has handed him thus far. And we say handed, as for the moment the consensus amongst those pushing the witches hats around is that Pulisic isn’t doing enough in training to warrant selection. And it’s not so much what he does in drills and bounce games – “he keeps it all nice and tidy” – but in his overall drive to get himself ahead of teammates currently occupying what should be his place. As Jurgen Klinsmann, the former USA coach, put it this week, Pulisic needs to get “nasty”.If Pulisic doesn’t have Klinsmann’s number, then you hope his father, Mark, can reach out to the German great and have him call his son. Klinsmann’s interview this week discussing Pulisic’s problems nailed it. He hit many of the points our source made last week. Not just the need for the 21 year-old to show a willingness to compete for his place, but also how he is in unchartered water. As we were told, this is the first time in Pulisic’s career where set expectations are waiting to be met. The staff at Chelsea understand this. They’ve seen it before. But it’s up to the player to cut loose from what he’s known.As Klinsmann says, “He’s a very special player, he’s tremendously talented, but this is a big step, because Borussia Dortmund was also basically the club where he got formed into a professional player.”He came out of the youth system there, he moved himself up, he had all the support within the club and now going to London…”We’d also add Pulisic’s international career to Klinsmann’s assessment. The German capped Pulisic at 17, with no great expectation. At that stage in his career, everything he achieved at senior level was a bonus. It was all about learning his craft, gaining experience. He was given the time and space to adjust to international football. To meet it’s demands. Just as he was with Dortmund.But now he’s in a very different environment. A reputation needs to be built. New relationships established. And a realisation must dawn that he’s not entitled to anything. No-one is going to give him a free pass. Or better yet, a free place in the manager’s XI.Klinsmann again: “He will go through a phase now where more and more he needs to bring his elbows out to fight himself through the system, at Chelsea it goes from game to game, week to week. “You’re basically in training, and you have to tell the coach: ‘I’m in, I’m going to start this game, you have to become nasty to make yourself a starter.”From what we know, Klinsmann and Lampard aren’t close. But the German was definitely helping Chelsea’s manager this week. Klinsmann essentially parrotting what Lampard had stated after leaving Pulisic on the bench for the home defeat to Valencia.”He’s shown some really good moments,” reasoned Lampard, “but what he has to do, as all the players have to, not just the wingers, is reach levels in training daily that make you sit up and go ‘here’s my team selection and that’s actually affected it, I have seen good stuff’. That’s the same for every player in the squad.”Training ground form and application is what makes Lampard tick. It’s what transformed a chubby, but talented, midfielder at West Ham, into a modern day great at Chelsea. Going through the motions. Doing just enough to get by. It just won’t survive within a Lampard-managed squad.Pulisic has been given some great advice this week. And he can make it at Chelsea – so long as he acts upon what Klinsmann says.
Jaylon Smith Injury Jaylon Smith InjuryFew players had a worse NFL Combine than Notre Dame’s Jaylon Smith, through no fault of his own. Smith was failed by multiple teams on his physical due to potential nerve damage stemming from the significant knee injury he suffered against Ohio State, which included a torn ACL and LCL.Smith, once viewed as a potential top 10 draft pick, will probably fall out of the first round altogether, but he’s doing whatever he can to prove that he is healing up. In an interview with Yahoo Sports, he revealed that he is currently leg pressing over 600 pounds, and squatting over 400.Can Smith feel a tangible difference physically in the past five weeks?“Oh yeah, absolutely,” Smith said. “A few weeks have made a huge difference, even the past two weeks. I can feel it.“Rehab is going great. I am leg-pressing over 600 pounds right now. I am squatting over 400 pounds. I am getting that strength back. It’s just a matter of time.”Asked whether it has been determined if he suffered nerve in the injury, Smith was a bit vague, but he remained upbeat.“We’ll see when I go back there [to the medical recheck],” Smith said. “We’ll see what the doctors say then. I feel like I’ve regained some of it. I’m happy where I am at right now.”When healthy, Smith is an incredibly impressive prospect. Hopefully he finds a team that will take a chance on him.[Yahoo Sports]More: Vote In Our “Most Annoying People In Sports Media” Championship >>>
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California Gov. Gavin Newsom and state lawmakers must now deal with the fallout of Pacific Gas & Electric Co.’s announcement it will file for bankruptcy.That will include looking at how to keep ratepayer costs down, ensure wildfire victims get the money they’re owed and rethink California’s energy picture in the face of climate change.PG&E said Monday it is filing for bankruptcy as it faces at least $30 billion in potential damages from lawsuits related to catastrophic California wildfires. It kicks off a 15-day window before the official filing.That’s prompting worries that power bills will rise and wildfire victims won’t get all of the money they are owed. Newsom says his top priorities are safety, reliability and affordability.Kathleen Ronayne And Janie Har, The Associated Press
Ohio State freshman forward Samantha Bouley skates toward the puck against Minnesota in Minneapolis on Jan. 21. Credit: Courtesy of OSU AthleticsThe Ohio State women’s hockey team split a two-game series with No. 4 Minnesota (17-5-3, 12-4-3) in Minneapolis this weekend, losing the first game 2-1 and tying the second 1-1, ending in a 2-1 shootout victory. Saturday’s game marked the first time OSU has earned points against the Golden Gophers since Jan. 11, 2015. The Buckeyes moved to 11-12-3 overall and 5-12-3 in conference.On Friday night, Ohio State had a 1-0 lead through the first two periods. After a scoreless first period, junior forward Julianna Iafallo scored the first goal of the game off an assist from sophomore forward Maddy Field to put Ohio State up 1-0 in the second. Minnesota was kept out of the net for the remainder of the second period thanks to 18 saves from Buckeye goalie Kassidy Sauve.The Scarlet and Gray got off on the wrong foot in the third period with a penalty to put Minnesota on the power play. At 10:48 on the game clock, the Gophers scored their first goal of the game to tie things up 1-1. Shortly after, Minnesota scored again at 16:23 to take the 2-1 lead. The Gophers held off the Buckeyes for the remaining minutes and won 2-1. Sauve had 31 saves against Minnesota but the OSU offense had only eight shots on goal the entire game.On Saturday, the game started out in a similar fashion with another scoreless first period. At 9:38 in the second, Minnesota scored the first goal of the game to take a 1-0 lead. The two teams had a combined seven penalties in the first two periods. At 1:27 in the third period, OSU senior forward Katie Matheny scored off an assist from Field to tie the game 1-1. Sauve defended the Minnesota attack perfectly for the rest of the period and the two teams went into overtime at Ridder Arena. The Buckeye goaltender had 26 saves through regulation.Through five minutes of overtime, the teams remained scoreless and went to a shootout. Minnesota’s Lee Stecklein shot first and scored for the Gophers, but junior defenseman Dani Sadek responded with a goal of her own. The teams went through seven shooters until Iafallo got one past the Gopher goalie to secure the Buckeye win, 2-1. Due to NCAA rules, all shootout wins are recorded as ties in the record book.Minnesota, the best power play team in the NCAA, had seven power play opportunities this weekend, all of which were killed by the Buckeyes. OSU went 0-3-1 against the top-ranked Golden Gophers this season which is an improvement from last year’s 0-4-0.Next up, the Scarlet and Gray will travel to Duluth, Minnesota, for a two-game series against conference opponent No. 2 Minnesota-Duluth.
Fernando Torres announced that he is going to leave Atletico Madrid at the end of the ongoing season but Calen Carr doesn’t think that he would be the right player to become an MLS star.The former Houston Dynamo striker insisted that Torres’ past doesn’t necessarily mean that he would be successful after coming to the MLS as he doesn’t see a team which would be the right fit for the Spanish attacker.Carr spoke about the former Spain international as he said, according to Sky Sports:La Liga Betting: Match-day 4 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Despite it being very early into La Liga season, both Barcelona and Real Madrid have had unprecedented starts to their campaigns. With this in…“It’s got to be the right team, MLS is at a point now where some of these older stars who’ve done well at Europe aren’t the necessarily right fit or an automatic ‘Yes, we’ll take you’.”“If it is Zlatan Ibrahimovic and it’s the right fit for a big club with a global profile like LA Galaxy, it makes sense.”“You hear teams like Atlanta United and LAFC who have gone younger and of the nine DP [Designated Player] signings in the off-season, the average age was just 22 and a half years old.”
The famous Mino Raiola has now reportedly offered Paul Pogba to Paris Saint-Germain for next season, claims the Daily MailThe football agent is aware that Pogba is growing increasingly unsettled at Manchester United with the midfielder looking set to be dropped from the starting line-up by Jose Mourinho once more for today’s Premier League match against Bournemouth.Raiola is aware that PSG are looking for some extra star power in the upcoming summer transfer window in a bid to mount a successful challenge for the Champions League title next season. Upon learning this, the Dutchman has offered the newly crowned Ligue 1 champions Pogba.It is understood that Raiola is trying to find a suitable solution for Pogba’s worsening situation at Old Trafford with the Frenchman having only scored 10 Premier League goals since his then-world record transfer of £89.3m two summers ago.Maguire says United need to build on today’s win George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Harry Maguire wants his United teammates to build on the victory over Leicester City.During the summer, Harry Maguire was referred to as the ultimate…Pep Guardiola has already revealed that Raiola had offered him the opportunity to sign the 25 year-old for Manchester City in the January transfer window.But the Mail reports that Pogba’s prospective move to PSG may be in doubt with the French club already over the Financial Fair Play(FFP) limit of €260m due to the signings of both Neymar and Kylian Mbappe last summer.
Bayern Munich are prepared to pursue their reported interest in Paulo Dybala in this summer’s transfer window if Robert Lewandowski chooses to leave the club, claims The SunThe Poland international has been strongly linked with a move to the likes of Real Madrid, Chelsea and Manchester United over the past year with Lewandowski believed to be growing frustrated by Bayern’s continued failure to win the Champions League title since his arrival from Borussia Dortmund in 2014.Should the 29-year-old choose to leave in the summer, Bayern will then target Dybala and the German club are convinced that they can sign the star from Juventus for a club-record transfer fee of £88million.Report: Bayern are held by Leipzig George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Bayern Munich was held to another draw, this time by RB Leipzig.Bayern Munich finds themselves in the unfamiliar position of sitting third in the…However, Bayern are not the only ones interested in signing the Argentine forward with Atletico Madrid also keen on signing Dybala at the end of the season.The two-time Europa League winners are resigned to losing Antoine Griezmann to La Liga rivals Barcelona and believe that the signing of Dybala will help soften the blow of losing their star striker.The 24-year-old has scored an impressive 21 goals in 30 Serie A games this season.