GREAT WEEK HARD WORK AND COMMITMENT “You’re only two days away from another crisis, so it’s important we keep our feet on the ground,” McClaren said. “We’ve not turned the corner … we want to be (like) this every week and that only comes on a platform of hard work, attitude and commitment and discipline.” A week after a miserable trip to McClaren’s Newcastle, Liverpool were facing a second successive loss. Although Jordan Henderson put Liverpool ahead at Anfield, Craig Dawson quickly scored an equaliser in the first half for West Brom and Jonas Olsson put the visitors ahead in the 73rd. But Henderson set up Origi to score from outside the area just when the Midlands club seemed set to take all three points. “Maybe the crowd was disappointed, but they didn’t let us feel it,” Klopp said. “We were all in the game, we were all concentrated to get this one point at the end and it felt like three. I know it’s only one, but it felt like three and in this moment there was an explosion (of emotion).” LONDON (AP): As title-chasing Arsenal completed back-to-back wins with ease, it took other Premier League games to provide a double-dose of late drama. Newcastle were facing ending another weekend in the relegation zone until Ayoze Perez stunned Tottenham in the third minute of stoppage time to win 2-1 at White Hart Lane. Liverpool, which lost last weekend to Newcastle, left it even later at home to West Bromwich Albion, with Divock Origi recovering a 2-2 draw in the sixth minute of stoppage time. The optimism which surrounded Juergen Klopp’s arrival as Liverpool manager two months ago has been substituted with a realism. Liverpool are five points adrift of Manchester United, which held on to fourth place despite losing at Bournemouth on Saturday, and nine behind provisional leaders Arsenal. Olivier Giroud converted an early penalty for his 50th Premier League goal, before Mesut Ozil set up Aaron Ramsey to sweep in another as Arsenal beat bottom-place Aston Villa 2-0. It was goalkeeper Petr Cech’s 169th clean sheet in the Premier League – most achieved with Chelsea – matching David James’ record. Although Arsenal’s stay at the top could be brief if Leicester beat ailing champions Chelsea, the win at Villa Park capped a good week when the odds were defied to book a place in the round of 16 in the Champions League. “I was a bit anxious today because we had given a lot on Wednesday night (at Olympiakos) and we came back very, very late,” Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. “I knew that Villa was fighting to survive … it was a controlled performance and a great week for us. Don’t worry. I had as well a few bad weeks already. So sometimes it balances a little bit.” It’s been a good four months for north London counterpart Mauricio Pochettino at Spurs. They had not lost in the League since the opening day of the season until running into a resilient Newcastle, which ended the 14-match unbeaten run. Perez beat Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris at his near post as the full-time whistle loomed, after fellow substitute Aleksandar Mitrovic had cancelled out Eric Dier’s first-half headed opener for Tottenham. “In the second half, every time we had the ball we started to make some mistakes and we give them the possibility to a right to a goal,” Pochettino said. “I think the first person that was responsible of the defeat is me.” With Newcastle out of the drop zone and up to 15th – above Chelsea – the pressure is off Steve McClaren for now.
ONeil Beckford, one of 17 apprentice riders who graduated from the Jockeys’ School in September of last year, rode his first winner when 4-1 chance SOJOURNER TRUTH romped the eighth race for $180,000 conditional claimers over the straight five course at Caymanas Park yesterday. A past student of Tacius Golding High in St Catherine, Beckford, 26, could not hide his glee when he passed the post first aboard his 58th ride, standing tall in the saddle with his whip hand raised high in celebration. Having secured three rides on the 10-race programme, Beckford said that he was looking forward to his first winner in SOJOURNER TRUTH, especially when it was learnt that the hot ante-post favourite, BARS OF GOLD, was a late non-starter. “She had shown improved form in her last two races, and with Bars of Gold out, I knew this was a golden opportunity for me to finally win a race. SOJOURNERTRUTH usually runs her best races over the straight when fully fit, and she delivered today by three lengths,” he explained. SOJOURNER TRUTH is owned by All-Stars Pro and trained by Paul Hylton. The 8-y-o bay mare by Skipping out of Augus Mawnin was winning her first race in well over a year. Beckford, who is apprenticed to veteran trainer Vin Edwards, thus became the 12th graduate from the last batch to ride a winner. Looking ahead, the young rider said he would work even harder to maintain his weight (51.0kg) and establish himself as a go to claiming apprentice. Meanwhile, BRAVE PROSPECT, running as the 2-1 second favourite, ran on strongly to beat long-time leader and 3-2 favourite FRANKENSTORM by three lengths in the Millard Ziadie Memorial Cup feature over 1100 metres. The 4-y-o colt by Seeking The Glory out of the 1999 derby winner Good Prospect, was ridden by Kerry-Gayle Robinson for in-form trainer Neive Graham and leading owner O’Shaun Connection. Eleven ran. – O.C.
John Campbell, captain of Jamaica Scorpions, believes the wicket of Barbados Pride opener Kraigg Brathwaite will be key if the Jamaica Scorpions is to make a comeback in their WICB Professional League encounter at Sabina Park.Brathwaite, the captain of the Pride, at the close was on 66 when his team closed on 103 for three on the first day.This was in reply to the Scorpions pedestrian first-innings total of 177 after they had won the toss and elected to bat.”His (Brathwaite’s) wicket will be key, and if we can come out and get his wicket, I think their batting will be under some pressure,” stated Campbell, who is leading the Scorpions for the second time.Coming off scores of 117, 30 and 34 since his return from Australia with the West Indies Test team, Brathwaite, in his usual accumulating style, has so far batted for close to two and, half hours and hit 11 fours.Of note, as well, was his duel with the tournament’s leading wicket-taker, left-arm spinner Nikita Miller.Closing with competitive figures of three for 22 off 14 overs, Miller got the ball to turn considerably, putting Brathwaite and others under pressure at times.”Miller put in a good spell,” conceded Brathwaite, who is eyeing a 16th first class in the process.”Once the spinners hit in the right areas, it is not easy scoring as the pitch is turning.”But its’ just about trusting my defence and staying positive when I see the ball to score and rotation of the strike.He continued: “I would like to score a hundred here at Sabina Park. The last couple of times, I scored two 90s.”I am working towards that, but, at the end of the day, I am looking to build a foundation with my team to get a big score.”With him at the close was the in-form Royston Chase, who has batted for 39 minutes and is nine not out.Earlier, the Jamaica Scorpions, hoping to break a string of three consecutive defeats, were led to their total by Andre McCarthy, 52, and opener Shacaya Thomas, 50.McCarthy, entering the fray with Jamaica at 42 for one, batted for one hour and 48 minutes and counted six fours and a six, while Thomas batted for an hour and 34 minutes on his way to hitting his second half century in as many matches.Former West Indies Under-19 fast bowler Justin Greaves with five for 41, his first five-wicket-haul in his third first-class encounter, was the pick of the bowlers.New West Indies left-arm spinning recruit Jomel Warrican ended with two for 43.”We did not get anywhere close to the runs that we wanted,” Campbell highlighted.”But, having said that, the total is already there and is a task for our bowlers to go and defend.”