Pollard vows to stamp out insularity

first_imgPORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC – Newly-appointed West Indies white-ball captain, Kieron Pollard, is reassuring the region that insularity in selection will be eradicated during his tenure. The Trinidadian will oversee his first assignment next month when West Indies take on Afghanistan in India in three Twenty20 Internationals and three One-Day Internationals.After participating in his first selection meeting, Pollard said he was focussed on ensuring that performance and not nationality, will determine the composition of teams going forward.“One of the major things we (selectors) talked about is the insularity that has been going on in the Caribbean and it is something we want to [stamp out],” Pollard said here in a wide-ranging radio interview. “At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter where you’re from, which part of the islands you’re from, once you’re performance is there, once you fit into the dynamics of the team, [once] you fit into what we’re looking for, you’re going to be selected.  “[The fact] that sometimes you veer to where you’re from is unfortunate, maybe as a home captain or coach, but at the end of the day we will try to pick the best team. “Me, knowing myself and how I go about things – and this is something I’ve been preaching since the franchise system started in the Caribbean T20 before the CPL – the bigger picture is the cricket and which ever persons are doing well, they’re going to be selected.” He continued: “I have it in myself in terms of my principles and high sort of integrity, to always go out and pick the best players, no matter what part of the islands they’re from.No matter what happens, people are going to talk – you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. But once I can lay down in my bed and sleep comfortable at nights, that would be most comforting to me.”Pollard has replaced Jason Holder as one-day skipper and Carlos Brathwaite as T20 captain, and takes over a side struggling in both formats. Currently, West Indies are ranked number nine in the 50-overs version following on from their disastrous World Cup showing earlier this year in England, and are also ninth in T20s even though they are reigning World champions.Pollard conceded that helping the Windies improve their fortunes would be a challenging task but that he was ready for the pressure associated with the captaincy.“It’s international cricket, the people are crying out for success, they are crying out for wins and it’s expected pressure is always going to be there,” he pointed out. “If there’s no pressure then it doesn’t make sense and we as individuals sometimes tend to perform better when our backs are against the wall. We’ve been struggling, it’s no secret but it’s something hopefully with the new coach (Phil Simmons), myself, some new players we can try to change going forward. “So I’m looking forward to embracing that pressure, still coming out with a smile but most importantly every time you step on that cricket field, you give a hundred per cent and try to improve as individuals.”Pollard is one of the most experienced T20 cricketers around, having played nearly 500 matches overall, but has no extensive captaincy experience at international level.He led Barbados Tridents in the Caribbean Premier League for five years before moving on to skipper St Lucia Zouks in 2017 and this year, took charge of his native Trinbago Knight Riders after Dwayne Bravo was ruled out with injury. The 32-year-old said he intended to bring his now familiar aggressive captaincy approach to his new role.“I just try to be ahead of the game, I try to out-think the opposition, think of what they’re going to do before it actually happens,” he noted.“I’m aggressive but sometimes my aggression is mistaken for arrogance which is expected because everybody has an opinion. But at the end of the day, a will-power to win is something that’s embedded in me so it’s something that comes out when I’m leading a team and trying to get the team over the line. “Sometimes I can be very calm and collective and you wouldn’t know what’s going on [with me].”last_img read more

Ali-Mohamed, Pestano-Belle guide GCC past Rising Stars

first_imgHalf-centuries from national player, Ronaldo Alimohamed and Martin Pestano-Belle, saw Georgetown Cricket Club (GCC) beating Rising Stars by seven wickets on Sunday. Playing at the former international venue, Bourda, in an invitational match to prepare for the upcoming season, Essequibo-based, Rising Stars won the toss and opted to bat in the 30-overs-a-side affair, posting 147 all out in 29.5 overs. GCC, in reply, reached 148-3 in 23 overs.Alimohamed took the fight to the Essequibians with a belligerent 50-ball 85 that included five fours and five sixes, the first of which went over long off to bring up his half century.The 20-year-old forged a 108-run third wicket partnership with Pestano-Belle who seemed a mere spectator to Alimohamed’s assault. However, Pestano-Belle got to work later on to end unbeaten on a run-a-ball 50, decorated with four fours and one six. Andy Ramnarine (1-17), Ottis Roberts (1-28) and Ravindra Narine (1-31) were the wicket takers for Rising Stars.Earlier, the visitors were indebted to a 68-run third-wicket stand between Robert Latchman (43) and Roberts (34) after left-arm spinner, Stephon Wilson (2-24) removed both openers.Latchman finessed four fours and two sixes before edging to the wicketkeeper off of Alimohamed while Roberts hammered three sixes and two fours before suffering the same fate, this time off of left-arm spinner, Devon Lord (2-23). Bernard Bailey (2-26) then rocked the middle order before Zachary Jodah bowled Ramnarine and a run out ended Rising Stars’ innings.last_img read more

Squash association to serve off 2020 season with C/bean Masters tournament

first_imgThe Guyana Squash Association (GSA) will serve off its 2020 calendar of events by hosting the BCQS International Guyana Masters Squash Tournament from January 23-25.  Masters players will compete in the over 35, over 45, over 55 and over 65 categories with entries from Jamaica, Barbados, and Tortola likely. Meanwhile, the likes of former junior Caribbean champion Reagan Pollard along with Denis Dias, Tony Farnum, Joe Mekdeci, and President of the association, David Fernandes are all set to gear up for Guyana during the tournament.last_img read more

Reaction to possible IOC postponement of 2020 Tokyo Games

first_img(Reuters) – A round-up of reaction to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announcing it is considering postponing the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, while ruling out cancelling the Games. Sarah Hirshland, chief executive of U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee“The progress reflected in today’s IOC update to the global athlete community is an important step in providing clarity, but our athlete community continues to face enormous ambiguity surrounding the 2020 Games in Tokyo.“Having spent countless hours communicating with IOC leadership, our peers around the world, our NGBs and the athletes we serve, we know the difficult obstacles ahead and we are all appreciative that the IOC has heard our concerns and needs, and is working to address them as quickly as possible.”World Athletics“World Athletics welcomes discussions with the IOC to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and wrote to the IOC earlier today to relay this feedback from its Area Presidents, Council and athletes.“We stand ready to work with the IOC and all sport on an alternative date.”Andrew Parsons, president of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC)“The IPC and I am certain, the whole Para-lympic Movement, fully support the IOC’s decision to look into the potential scenarios regarding the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, including postponement.“Human life is much more important than anything at all, and currently it is vital that everyone, including athletes, stay at home to help prevent the further spread of this horrible disease which is impacting the global community.” Nigel Huddleston, UK sports minister“It is right that the IOC seriously considers postponing the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The health and safety of athletes, sports fans and officials due to work at the Games is absolutely paramount. We would welcome the IOC making a definitive decision soon, to bring clarity to all those involved.”Hugh Robertson, chairman British Olympic Association (BOA)“We welcome the IOC Executive Board decision to review the options in respect of a postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. How-ever, we urge rapid decision-making for the sake of athletes who still face significant uncertainty.“Restrictions now in place have removed the ability of athletes to compete on a level playing field and it simply does not seem appropriate to continue on the present course towards the Olympic Games in the current environment.”Dame Katherine Grainger, Chair of UK Sport“Given the circumstances, today’s news that the IOC are looking at options to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Olympics was inevitable, and the correct decision for the safety of athletes, staff and fans.” International Golf Federation (IGF)“The IGF remains committed to supporting the IOC and Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee to delivering the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and will work with them over the coming weeks at investigating all scenarios that will enable safe and fair competitions for our athletes.”last_img read more

Brady claims first WTA title at Top Seed Open as WTA marks U.S. return

first_img(Reuters) – American Jennifer Brady clinched her first career WTA title yesterday, defeating Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann 6-3 6-4 in the Top Seed Open final. The hard court, outdoor competition in Lexington, Kentucky, marked the WTA’s first tournament in the United States since the coronavirus outbreak forced almost all sport into a long break earlier this year.In the first set, a defensive effort saw Brady save all four break points faced before going on the attack in the second set, winning more than 80% of her first serve points in front of the empty stands.“Before I walked onto the court I was like, ‘Okay, I have to believe in myself that I can win this,’ otherwise it doesn’t really make sense for me to walk out there,” said Brady, who did not drop a set the entire tournament. Brady, who defeated Coco Gauff in straight sets in the semifinal, thrust her hands into the sky after firing off a forehand winner to clinch the match and walked to the net to tap her opponent’s racket in a socially distanced gesture of sportsmanship.“Everything I’ve imagined, it’s definitely reality,” said Brady, who Facetimed her parents after the win.With limited options to celebrate under health and safety protocols, Brady said she would celebrate the win by ordering in “something delicious” to eat. “And I’m buying for anybody else who’s here,” she added.The Cincinnati Masters is scheduled to be played at Flushing Meadows, New York from later this week, followed by the U.S. Open, also at its usual Flushing Meadows home, from Aug. 31 to Sept. 13.last_img read more

Online assets help Cherry AB return to black in 2015

first_img Betsson outrides pandemic challenges as regulatory dramas loom July 21, 2020 Share Related Articles StumbleUpon Submit Fredrik Burvall,Stockholm listed gambling operator, Cherry Gaming AB has returned to full year (2015) positive EBITDA recording group earnings of SEK 35.9 million (£3 million).The operator continues its strong online performance, which contributed 69% of 2015’s FY SEK 528 million (£43 million) group revenues, up 56% on 2014’s SEK 340 million (£28 million).The results presented by Cherry governance, represent a performance turnaround for the operator who reported 2014 EBITDA losses of SEK 18 million (£1.4 million).Highlighting the strong performance of its digital assets, Cherry governance detailed that its online gaming division had contributed earnings of SEK 21.8 million (£1.8 million), recording a FY growth of 91%.  Further corporate highlights, would see Cherry governance detail the performance of digital content provider Yggdrasil which had grown 357% in earnings to SEK 5.2 million.In 2015 the operator was able to complete five acquisitions, (Game Lounge, Almor, the domains and agreements of a leading Finnish affiliate, Moorgate Media Ltd and NorgesSpill.com) which governance detailed would strengthen its positions within core markets.Fredrik Burvall, Cherry AB CEO commented on corporate performanceCherry’s Online Gaming business achieved very strong growth of 109 percent and substantially improved earnings for the period. The activity on our gaming sites increased substantially and the number of active players increased by 219 percent compared with Q4 2014. Online Gaming is well positioned today, with a platform that makes it possible to quickly and efficiently add new products and skins. In addition to the licences the Group already holds, Cherry will continue to look for local licences in markets where we can expect strong growth, and has therefore initiated an application process to obtain an operator’s licence in the UK.In December, Jonas Wåhlander was appointed CEO of Cherry Malta, adding enhanced leadership and experience working with business models involving large numbers of consumer-focused transactions. The Online Gaming teams were also proud to receive two awards at the International Gaming Awards, when we were recognised as the “Online Gaming Operator of the Year” for the third year in a row, while EuroLotto.com was awarded the “Lottery Operator of the Year”. Share Kindred marks fastest route to ‘normal trading’ as it delivers H1 growth July 24, 2020 GiG lauds its ‘B2B makeover’ delivering Q2 growth August 11, 2020last_img read more

Daniel Graetzer – Mediatech Solutions – Building effective international expansion…

first_img Daniel GraetzerDaniel Graetzer Executive Director of Mediatech Solutions speaks to SBC on the realities of creating industry platform services and provisions for effective international expansion. Focusing on delivering a tailored product for each individual  market, Mediatech Solutions has won a number of new international  clients. Graetzer who heads up strategy for the platform provider details what core factors stakeholders must asses when delivering gambling services to new and developing markets.   __________________________________ SBC: Hi Daniel, great to catch up. Mediatech Solutions (MTS) has won a number of international platform contracts in 2016. How has your team achieved these wins?Daniel Graetzer : Through a combination of hard work and offering the best product on the market. Our next-generation IRIS platform is a genuine game-changer, and operators all over the world are realising its potential. They are particularly drawn to its flexibility and we make sure we offer a tailored product for each market.It has also been about building strong relationships in markets across the world. In recent weeks I’ve been to Panama, Romania, Philippines, Peru, Nigeria and a number of other emerging markets. There is really no substitute for talking to customers in these jurisdictions and gaining an understanding of each region’s unique challenges and demands.SBC: MTS has placed a high emphasis on extending its services in developing betting/igaming markets. When entering these markets, what factors did you have to consider in terms of MTS services and capabilities for developing markets? DG: Many of the emerging markets that are beginning to regulate online gaming already have a strong land-based heritage. So, our omni-channel expertise, combined with our partners at R Franco who have more than 50 years of experience in land-based supply, is a really strong selling point. Omni-channel often provides a good entry into these markets so we continue to focus on that side of the product.SBC: How has your experience in MTS home market of Spain, helped you extend your platform provisions within developing markets?DG: Spain is an extremely interesting market. It is emerging as one of the most important in Europe now, but I think it is fair to say it has taken some time to reach this stage. It was only last year that online slots could be offered for the first time, and now online revenues are growing impressively. Our experience in Spain is definitely helping us in developing markets elsewhere. Latin America is an obvious target, but we find that the regulatory challenge posed in Spain also puts us in a strong position to pitch in many emerging markets.SBC: From a commercial perspective what are developing market operators valuing in terms of platform services and provisions?DG: It is all about flexibility. If you look at a lot of the emerging markets which are beginning to introduce online regulation, operators face very different challenges to those they face in the major European jurisdictions. Product is often heavily restricted in these regions, regulation is massively complex and customer preferences are very different. Operators understand that an out-of-the-box solution designed for Western Europe will not work for them. Our job is to provide them with the tools to create the kind of offer which can succeed.SBC: Looking at industry technology, are current industry platform provisions too structured to provide effective services for developing markets such as Africa and South America?DG: I would say so. Africa and South America are developing extremely quickly. It isn’t just the regulation, it is the technology and player preferences too. Take Nigeria as an example: retail pool-betting dominated for many years, but now new verticals including sports betting, virtual sports and lottery are challenging the old order. Any operator locked into a turn-key provider is not going to survive if it cannot adapt to the new market reality.SBC: Finally, how do you see MTS services for developing markets progressing in the coming months?DG: We will continue to develop our flagship IRIS platform and the accompanying land-based project, Candy. We’ll have some exciting new deals to talk about later in the year. IRIS’s modules are decoupled and all our APIs are available for integration, so as well as offering total flexibility to operators, we are also in a position to adapt the platform as technology progresses. We don’t see IRIS as a static platform – it is always evolving and improving, and that is absolutely vital in emerging markets.___________________________Daniel Graetzer Mediatech Solutions  Executive Director Share Submit StumbleUpon BtoBet refines African SMS payment options with Tola Mobile  August 20, 2020 Related Articles Winamax maintains Granada CF sponsorship despite bleak Spanish outlook August 19, 2020 Share Andrea Vota – Jdigital’s challenge of Spanish restrictions is led by logic and rationale August 13, 2020last_img read more

iWatch up for grabs to the BOS attendee that can outpunch ‘The Hammer’

first_img StumbleUpon Golden Race gains ISO certification May 29, 2020 Submit Share Golden Race’s virtual sports products get Swedish certification June 18, 2020 Share The industry wakes up to virtual sports potential June 26, 2020 Related Articles There’s an iWatch up for grabs as Golden Race has challenged Betting on Sports attendees to try to outpunch MMA star Lyubo Simeonov, otherwise known as ‘The Hammer’. Visitors to the Betting on Sports conference in London this week will have the chance to go head to head with one of the stars of Golden Race’s award nominated Real Fighting game. The renowned MMA fighter will be taking on all challengers at the Golden Race stand at Betting on Sports, which will feature a fairground-style boxing machine, with the person who sports the strongest punch picking up one of the most sought after pieces of wearable tech on the market at the moment – the iWatch.Delegates will have the opportunity to try and out-punch the two metre tall Simeonov, who also had a cameo in the Expendables 2 film alongside Sylvester Stallone and Jason Statham.Simeonov is one of the actual fighters featured in Golden Race’s Real Fighting, an innovative take on the virtual products in that it features footage from real fighters having real bouts, specially filmed by Golden Race, in virtual environments.Real Fighting has made the shortlist in the Digital Gaming Innovation of the Year category of the Global Gaming Awards.Golden Race CEO Martin Wachter, who is also speaking on a panel discussing virtual sports at the conference, commented: “Lyubo is a big presence, both in our game and on our stand. Visitors at this year’s ICE would have had chance to see him in action in our cage, but this time he’s unleashed and taking on the betting industry’s finest.”Check out the full Betting on Sports agenda here.last_img read more

Excitement over Bundy painful reminder of Orioles’ underwhelming “cavalry”

first_imgWith the Orioles beginning preparations in Sarasota ahead of their 20th anniversary at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, much of the buzz in camp has surrounded a young pitcher born seven months after the baseball cathedral first opened in downtown Baltimore.Yes, let that marinate for a moment or two.After being selected as the fourth overall pick of last June’s amateur draft, 19-year-old Dylan Bundy has drawn rave reviews from observers and teammates alike while displaying a plus-fastball in the mid to upper 90s and three other pitches that already have hitters shaking their heads during live batting practice, according to reports from Florida. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound right-hander will presumably begin his minor league career at Single-A Delmarva this season, but his track to the big leagues has the potential to be much shorter than the typical pitcher fresh out of high school.“That kid Bundy is gonna be special….if he wants to,” center fielder Adam Jones said on his official Twitter account on Monday.Never one to mince words, Jones tells it like he sees it.Of course, before anyone proclaims him the future ace of the staff, Bundy has yet to throw a professional pitch — even if he appears to have more upside than any Baltimore pitching prospect in recent memory. Given their failed history in cultivating young hurlers over the years, the Orioles would be well served to protect their best pitching prospect in bubble wrap after the gushing about his potential since last June.But the hype surrounding Bundy isn’t all that different than the anticipation for the famed “cavalry” of a couple years ago when then-manager Dave Trembley and many others were touting the potential of Brian Matusz, Jake Arrieta, Chris Tillman, and several others and how it would lead the Orioles from the abyss of losing season after losing season. It gave fans hope at the time, but the results have been mixed at best and generally regarded as disappointing when looking back at all the excitement.Matusz? A disastrous 2011 season that included a 1-9 record and a 10.69 earned run average has made nearly everyone question the former first-round pick’s health, dedication to the game, and mental toughness.Arrieta? He had been the steadiest of the original “Big Three” before elbow surgery cut his 2011 campaign short, but the tough right-hander still doesn’t show enough command to project as much better than a middle-of-the-rotation starter.Tillman? The tall righty has never shown more than brief flashes of the ability the Orioles saw in him when acquiring him as part of the return for the Erik Bedard trade over four years ago. His future appears to be in the bullpen.The most promising arrival of the crop, left-hander Zach Britton shows great upside after a solid rookie season, but a shoulder strain has caused fans to take pause in the early stages of spring training.After a disappointing offseason void of any significant moves and the trade of veteran mainstay Jeremy Guthrie to the Colorado Rockies, the continued development of the young pitching will be even more critical in not only determining how the Orioles fare in 2012 but will also go a long way in deciding where the organization goes from here. With the current core of position players not getting any younger, the failure of Matusz, Britton, and Arrieta to take significant steps forward could entice executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette to begin selling off key pieces such as Jones and right fielder Nick Markakis to essentially begin the rebuilding process again.And for a fan base devoid of a winning product since 1997, that’s a sobering proposition.For Matusz (52 career starts) and Arrieta (40 career starts), the time is now to begin showing significant signs of maturity to prove the organization can pencil each into the rotation every fifth day without having to think twice. Britton needs to build upon his 4.61 ERA in 2011 and show why many scouts project him as a potential No. 2 starter in a major league rotation. If the trio makes major strides in 2012, it might be enough to push ownership to spend more aggressively at the big-league level while continuing to build the farm system behind the scenes next offseason.Of course, manager Buck Showalter has issued the challenge for all starting candidates to be ready to perform in spring training as he tries to piece together a starting rotation. The Orioles skipper has said the days of young pitchers holding a spot by default are over, which means some combination of Matusz, Arrieta, and Britton could wind up at Triple-A Norfolk to begin the season while short-term options such as Jason Hammel and Dana Eveland fill rotation spots. Frankly, it’s an even more deflating scenario than the continued struggles of the young pitchers at the big-league level.If those goals don’t come to fruition, the Orioles may be back to square one — admittedly, not a very long fall — as fans will hopelessly look ahead to the likes of Bundy and top infield prospects Manny Machado and Jonathan Schoop to lead the club back to respectability.It will be no different than two years ago.Or six years ago.Or nine years ago.Waiting on exciting potential, but wondering if it will ever become reality.It’s a mantra Orioles fans are all too familiar with.last_img read more