ST JOHN’S, Antigua, (CMC):Legendary former pacer Sir Curtly Ambrose says tweaks need to be made to the controversial eligibility rule in order to have the best players available for West Indies duty.Sir Curtly, who currently serves as a West Indies team bowling consultant, said while he appreciated the objective of the rule, the overall focus should be on ensuring that the region always fielded its best XI.”I still believe that there are a few guys out there who I believe can play the ODIs and the Test cricket but there are criteria that you have to play the first-class cricket here in the region to be selected or eligible for Test cricket, and you have to also play the regional one-day tournament to play for the ODI [team],” Ambrose said.”I can understand that because you must have some structure, but I still believe that we should be looking to get our best team.”I am not saying guys should just walk into the team willy-nilly, but if there is a situation where guys are available and we are looking to get our best team, I still believe we should get them in.”Currently, the West Indies Cricket Board requires players to make themselves available for the Regional First Class Championship in order to qualify for the Test team. Similarly, players need to play the Regional Super50 if they are to be considered for selection for ODIs.However, many of the leading players like Chris Gayle, Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo, AndrÈ Russell, Darren Sammy, and Sunil Narine all ply their trade in Twenty20 tournaments across the globe, often conflicting with the scheduling of Caribbean tournaments.For instance, the Australian Big Bash clashed with the Regional Super50 last January, and West Indies players opted for the T20 tournament.Weakened squadThis means that West Indies are likely to have a weakened squad for the upcoming Tri-Series in June involving South Africa and Australia.Sir Curtly, one of the finest fast bowlers the sport has seen, advocates for a better relationship between the players and administrators in order to address the many existing issues.”If you have a better relationship or a great relationship, I believe the cricket will get better because guys will go to play cricket feeling relaxed, knowing that their business off the field is being taken care of, so all they have to worry about is playing cricket,” the Antiguan said.”I honestly believe a better relationship between board and players will change our cricket and make it better.”
Lewis Hamilton, triple world champion, smashed his Red Bull Ring lap record twice in Austrian Grand Prix practice on Friday, with Ferrari’s championship leader Sebastian Vettel close behind his Mercedes rival.The two, separated at the top by 14 points after eight races, got back down to business after calming a ‘road rage’ controversy that has dominated Formula One since the previous race in Azerbaijan last month.Hamilton, the only driver on the current grid to have won in Austria following the retirement of 2016 champion and team mate Nico Rosberg, swiftly demolished the lap record he set last year.The Briton then lowered his morning time by another half second in the afternoon to end the day with a best time of one minute 05.483 seconds.In changeable conditions in the scenic Styrian hills, with bright sunshine mixed in with the occasional rain shower, four times world champion Vettel was second on the timesheets with a lap 0.147 slower than Hamilton’s.Red Bull’s Dutch teenager Max Verstappen had been second in the morning, when Vettel was only fourth and half a second off the pace.Mercedes have won every year since Austria returned to the calendar in 2014, after being absent for a decade, with Hamilton triumphant in 2016.The Briton and his Ferrari rival have been closely matched on race pace, with each winning three grands prix so far this season.Vettel will be happy to have the focus back on the racing after making a public apology to Hamilton for the Baku furore last month and his comments afterwards.advertisementThe German had driven into the back of Hamilton’s car, while the race leader was waiting for the safety car to pit, and had pulled alongside to remonstrate. He ultimately finished fourth, a place ahead of Hamilton. He then accused Hamilton of “brake-testing” him, words he retracted this week.Hamilton’s team mate Valtteri Bottas was third fastest in both sessions, with Verstappen dropping back to fourth in the afternoon after being sidelined early in the session with a brake problem.Red Bull’s Azerbaijan race winner Daniel Ricciardo and Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen were fifth and sixth in both.Ricciardo injected some Australian humour into the build-up when he jokingly told Sky Sports television, while struggling to keep a straight face, that Baku had changed everything.”I always said I want to win five races and retire so I’m probably not going to compete this weekend,” he smiled. “I think I’m done. So it’s changed pretty dramatically my position in the sport.”He then reassured “people at home who don’t understand my silly sense of humour” not to worry.
After announcing the successor to its Q6 series earlier this year, Korean electronics giant LG has finally launched its LG Q7 smartphone in India. Priced at Rs 15,990, the new LG Q7 will be available for sale across all retail outlets in India starting September 1 in Aurora Black and Moroccan Blue colour variants.”We are confident that the consumers who are looking for a balanced smartphone with the premium features will find the LG ‘Q7’ very hard to resist,” Business Head- Mobiles, LG India, Advait Vaidya said in a statement.As far as the specifications are concerned, LG Q7 sports a 5.5-inch full HD FullVision Display with a resolution of 1080×2160 pixels and an aspect ratio of 18:9. The body is of the newly launched phone is protected by IP68 dust and water resistant technology.The device is powered by 1.8GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6750S processor and it couples 3GB RAM with 32GB internal storage which can be expanded via a microSD.LG’s new budget smartphone runs on Android 8.1 Oreo and is backed by a 3,000mAh battery. It also features support for Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 technology.As far as the camera is concerned, LG Q7 sports a 13MP camera at the back with f/2.2 aperture, PDAF and LED flash. On the front, the phone sports an 8MP camera with f/1.9 aperture. In terms of the audio, the phone offers support for DTS: X Surround Sound technology and it comes with active noise cancellation feature.Besides the fingerprint sensor, which rests directly below the camera and the LED flash on the rear side of the phone, LG Q7 sports a host of other sensors including an accelerometer, a gyro-meter, a proximity sensor and a compass. In terms of connectivity, the LG Q7 includes Wi-Fi 802.11, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, GPS, GLONASS, FM Radio, USB Type-C and a 3.5mm jack.advertisementALSO READ: LG Q7, Q7+ and Q7a with 18:9 display, water-resistant body announcedAs mentioned before, LG had announced the successor to its Q6 series– Q7, Q7+, and Q7a smartphones earlier this year. However, the company has launched only LG Q7 in India so far. It remains to be seen if the Korean giant would launch the other two variants– Q7+ and Q7a in India in the coming days.
Share on Twitter Knife crime: how teenagers cope with daily life on the front line The FA Share on Pinterest Football Sportblog Like many 10-year-old boys throughout Britain in the year 2000, Damilola Taylor was a fan of Manchester United, happily in thrall to the team of Ryan Giggs, David Beckham and Andy Cole. He loved playing the game, too. Today, 18 years after he bled to death in the stairwell of a Peckham housing estate, his name is on the youth centre where he practised his skills.Beyond the fact he had left Lagos for south London a few months earlier with his mother and a sister who needed specialised treatment for epilepsy, a love of football was among the few things that could be used to build a picture of Damilola when the news of his death made headlines in a Britain that could still be shocked by the idea of children killing each other. Now the connection is made all the time in reports of boys dying by violence on the streets. An involvement in rap music is often mentioned. But football is the interest that, by providing the victims with a sense of aspiration, most frequently gives us a clue to who they were. Topics Premier League comment Share on Messenger Knife crime Share via Email Read more Share on LinkedIn A weekend, or a month, or an entire season could be devoted to getting the message across Kids feel they do know Sterling and Rashford, and look up to them. Not all young black footballers come from difficult backgrounds but they are all familiar with the story. So why not make use of this sense of identification to communicate a message through a voice that may actually be listened to? And not just one such voice, either: all of them, black and white and everything else, standing together and speaking in unison.The Premier League and the FA could take a lead here. They depend on the underfunded schools and untended recreation grounds of England to nurture many of the players whose skills attract their lucrative worldwide audience. If they took the initiative, a campaign based on a collective voice might have a chance of success. A weekend, or a month, or even an entire season could be devoted to getting a message across: “Drop the knife – save a life”, for instance, although any half-decent advertising copywriter with two minutes to spare could improve on that. “Drop the knife – save YOUR life” might be better, since we learnt last week that more than half of young victims are killed by their own knives, wrested from them in the course of a fight. There could be a national version of the visits by players to schools and other places that already form part of some professional clubs’ community programmes.By itself, football cannot hope to solve the problems that induce children – whether out of fear or bravado – to leave home carrying knives. It cannot provide a generation with proper jobs. It cannot eradicate the gangs that persuade kids barely into their teens to transport drugs around the country, giving them money and a sense of belonging. But its privileged position enables it to exert a positive influence. Here, amid the tragedy of young lives bleeding away, would be a chance to do some real good. It was there again last week when 16-year-old John Ogunjobi was stabbed to death in Tulse Hill, another part of south London. John had played for a local team, St Matthew’s FC, which started 14 years ago as a friends’ kickabout and now works with local agencies to provide support and recreation for kids in the effort to keep them away from gangs and crime. “He was a good footballer, a real star,” one of his friends said.More than 40 people aged between 16 and 24 have died by violence in the capital so far this year but the phenomenon of teenage stabbings extends around the country. This is a plague and the effects of government cuts – particularly to the police and social care – throw its symptoms into higher relief.The successful attempt to reduce knife crime in Glasgow is held up as a positive example but it will have escaped no one’s attention that many of the killings in London and elsewhere in England are black-on-black. Victims and perpetrators alike are the descendants of the citizens of former colonies who were invited to work in this country and then, thanks to the collapse of the industrial sector, saw their children and grandchildren look in vain for meaningful large-scale employment or a sense of social structure. No wonder the boys search for routes – mainly rap and football – by which to escape the trap set by Thatcherism and sharpened by George Osborne’s imposition of economic austerity.Where does football come in? The heroes of many young people who take knives to school are the likes of Raheem Sterling and Marcus Rashford: the ones who made it, who got out, whose weekly salaries amount to many times the average national annual wage. These days, the lucky ones can count their blessings as they look back on what happened to childhood friends who did not escape.Rio Ferdinand, brought up on a Peckham estate, has always spoken eloquently on the issue. Among the present generation is Andre Gray, the Watford striker, who gave an interview to the Sunday Times recently in which he spoke of his tough upbringing in Wolverhampton. Pointing to the scar on his cheek from a knife wielded in a gang fight one Christmas, he talked of friends who had become involved with gangs and ended up in jail. Warnings, he said, usually fell on deaf ears: “The way youth is now, they don’t respect a lot of people. They’ll stand there saying, ‘You don’t understand.’ I know how I was at 16, 17. You don’t look up to people you don’t know.” Share on WhatsApp Share on Facebook Reuse this content