Bridgetown—The West Indies Cricket Board yesterday said it was deeply embarrassed by the premature and unfortunate end to the recent tour of India and apologized to the BCCI and all stakeholders—especially the cricket loving public of the West Indies and India—for the events leading up to the development. The Board met in Barbados yesterday and agreed to review the events which led to the fiasco.

In a subsequent release, the Board said it  was establishing a Task Force, comprising critical stakeholders, to review the premature end of the tour. “The Task Force will meet with all parties, including WIPA and the players, before reporting its findings to the Board of Directors.” The Board will also request a meeting with the BCCI, as well as schedule an urgent debriefing with the West Indies team management unit which accompanied the team.

The WICB also said it will use its best endeavours to ensure a successful tour of South Africa as scheduled. The release said the WICB was mindful of the related decisions of the BCCI Working Committee (See story on this page). It said in light of the longstanding good relationship between WICB and BCCI, which goes back decades and has produced numerous mutual benefits, the WICB was looking forward to meeting with the BCCI to discuss these decisions which can have serious implications for West Indies cricket.

The release noted: “WICB believes that a way can be found to repair the damage that has been caused and to ensure that similar events do not recur, with the focus being on the betterment of West Indies and world cricket. “The WICB thanks all stakeholders, particularly the ICC, BCCI, their broadcasters and sponsors for their patience and understanding in this matter and looks forward to the continuation of a strong relationship between our Boards.” The WICB further stated it was committed to acting as expeditiously as the situation allows, and will provide further information to the public as soon as it was appropriate to do so. (CMC)


Work on the new T&T Football Association Constitution will begin this week when representatives of the Independent Football Reform Commission (IFRC), Fifa and Concacaf meet with president of the T&T Football Association (TTFA) Raymond Tim Kee and local officials. A press conference will be held tomorrow to announce major announcements concerning T&T football. Concacaf representatives Reudi Broennimann, Primo Corvaro, and Marco Leal will join Tim Kee and selected local representatives to serve on the Constitutional Reform Panel to begin work on the new TTFA Constitution that will be presented to the TTFA Executive Committee, members and stakeholders for national review and ratification.

The ratification process and several other areas of concern cited by Fifa will also result in the delay in TTFA elections until after June 15, 2015. However, regional zone elections will take place as originally scheduled. “When I came into office two years ago, I vowed to make meaningful change to this FA, first by taking the necessary steps to improve our on the field product and second, by initiating efforts to develop a new structure and governance model for T&T football,” Tim Kee stated.  The origins of the reform effort were born soon after Tim Kee’s election as FA President when he met with Fifa officials, including Fifa President Sepp Blatter, to discuss the way forward for T&T football.

The idea of the Reform Commission was later introduced to and accepted by Fifa representatives during the 2013 Concacaf Congress in Panama, site of the page two presentation of the now infamous Simmons Report that detailed the events and activities surrounding the World Cup bribery scandal that took place in Trinidad in 2011. After convincing Fifa that T&T possessed enough knowledge and talent to achieve substantive reform, the TTFA president began assembling individuals, such as Shaka Hislop, T&T Olympic Committee president Brian Lewis, and Senator Elton Prescott S.C., to join what would be known as the IFRC. “I would like to thank members of the IFRC for their tireless effort in producing a document that can be a template for other sporting NGBs and, of course, thank you to Fifa and Concacaf, particularly Fifa secretary Jerome Valcke and Concacaf president and Fifa VP, Jeff Webb, for their supporting role in our efforts to make football a better governed entity that will now have a real chance at operating and serving all of its members and stakeholders directly.” added Tim Kee.


KENNYA CORDNER put in a 74th minute header and captain Maylee Attin-Johnson converted a 83rd minute penalty, as Trinidad and Tobago’s national women’s footballers came away 2-1 winners over Guatemala in Washington, DC, yesterday to put themselves in prime position to progress to the final four of the CONCACAF Women’s Championship.

Outplayed for much of the match, Guatemala got a consolation goal a minute into added-on time, when 20-year-old midfielder María Monterroso beat late T&T substitute Ayanna Russell to a lofted ball into the 18-metre box, and put a glancing header past inexperienced Soca Princesses goalkeeper Teneshia Palmer.

For the second consecutive match, striker Cordner was on the end of a precise cross from Ahkeela Mollon when beating the Guatemalan keeper at the back post, and also won the decisive penalty when taken down while driving between two defenders.

The win made the Soca Princesses almost certain to move on to the final four of the Championship. To stop them, Caribbean third-placed finishers Haiti would have had to accomplish the greatest upset in the tournament’s history, by beating the world No.1 ranked Americans in last night’s later match.

With ambitions of becoming the first Caribbean team to qualify for a FIFA Women’s World Cup, the Soca Princesses finished their Group A programme with six points, and are highly likely to advance as the second-placed finishers to the group leaders United States and advance to the knockout round, where they would meet Costa Rica in Pennsylvania on Friday, for a spot in both the CONCACAF final and the World Cup.

Today, Caribbean runners-up Jamaica have their fate in their own hands, and need to beat Mexico to advance to the final round.

The first three CONCACAF finishers qualify automatically for the 2015 FIFA Women World Cup to be played next year in Canada. Should they finish fourth, at minimum, T&T will earn a two-leg playoff against Ecuador for another World Cup spot, the route which took the men’s team, the Soca Warriors, to the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

The first leg is carded for November 8/9 in Ecuador and the return between November 22/23.

Yesterday, T&T dominated a goalless first half, but, rather than build on their superior possession in the second half, the Princesses became very scrappy, particularly in the midfield.

However, Cordner’s goal lifted them. And the penalty she earned provided the needed insurance.

Jérôme Champagne has called for a strengthening of National Associations as he detailed his "programme for the twenty-first century FIFA" and reform of the the world governing body's Executive Committee.

The Frenchman today sent these two letters to all 209 of FIFA's members as he presses ahead with his campaign for the Presidency.

In the letters, Champagne outlined plans to set aside the majority of seats on the Executive Committee of FIFA for the Presidents of National Associations, in order to strengthen the overall power of these bodies.

He would also see these positions selected at the same time as the election of the FIFA President at the annual Congress.

"This would create, and it would be a first, a true 'governing majority' in favour of consistency," he said.

While these Presidents would be elected onto the FIFA Executive Committee, Champagne also outlined plans to see them lose their seats if they lose their domestic responsibility.

"Their replacement could be done by the President of the national association of the continent that was not elected but who received the next lowest number of votes in the initial election," Champagne added.

"Another option would be a new election at the next FIFA Congress for the remainder of the four years of the initial term."

Champagne has also highlighted the need for "a new equilibrium between the continents, fairer and more representative, in at least four areas."

These consist of the election of the President and the first vice-president together on the same "ticket", an additional seat on the Executive Committee for the five non-European continents, expansion of the FIFA administration across the globe and an immediate discussion on the allocation of the 32 World Cup spots.

The idea of the positions being elected on the same "ticket" would, according to Champagne, ensure "the legitimacy of the acting President if the elected President of FIFA were unable to continue to perform his duties."

He added: "It will also be a strong symbol of the universality of our organisation, and the duty to take into account the diverse needs of football across the planet."

The duo would have to be from different continents in order for this second point to become valid, the Frenchman explained.

In his letters, Champagne castigates that FIFA identifies $990 million (£613 million/€774 million) in administrative costs, but injected only $900 million (£557 million/€703 million) in development assistance.

He, therefore, promises to reduce administrative costs by five per cent and ensure the investment of this money go towards development aid, including building 400 pitches over the next four years.


International Olympic Committee members Octavian Morariu and Patrick Baumann have been confirmed on the Olympic sevens discussion panel which will meet at the International Rugby Board (IRB) World Rugby Conference and Exhibition next month.

Others on the panel include former Argentina international Gus Pichot, who also serves on the IRB Council, the IRB's head of competitions and performance, Mark Egan, and Women's Rugby World Cup 2014-winning centre Rachael Burford for England.

The "Higher, Faster, Stronger" panel will be moderated by BBC World journalist and broadcaster David Eades.

Former international player Morariu stood down as President of the Romanian Olympic and Sports Committee earlier this year after ten years in charge, following a spell as President of the Romanian Rugby Federation from 2001 to 2003.

In July 2012, he was elected as President of the European Rugby Association and last year became only the fourth Romanian to be elected as a member of the IOC.

Baumann, secretary general of the International Basketball Federation, will join the panel to provide insight and advice on what it takes to be a successful Olympic sport ahead of rugby sevens debut at Rio 2016.

The Swiss has been an IOC member since 2007 and is currently leading Lausanne's bid for the 2020 Winter Youth Olympic Games.

"Rio 2016 is less than two years away and we must make sure that we make the most of the fantastic opportunity we have to showcase rugby sevens to the world," said IRB chief executive Brett Gosper.

"The 'Olympic Rugby Sevens - Faster, Higher, Stronger' panel is the perfect platform to debate the challenges and opportunities as the momentum builds towards this vital moment for our sport.

"With one month to go to the IRB Conference and Exhibition we are delighted with the growing list of high-calibre speakers and partners.

"It's going to be a fascinating conference that offers valuable insights into the issues that really matter to the Rugby family and the wider sporting community."

The inaugural World Rugby Conference and Exhibition took place in the IRB's home city of Dublin, Ireland last year.

Next month's event is due to take place at the Hilton London Metropole on November 17 and 18.

As well as discussions on rugby sevens Olympic Games debut, other items on the agenda will include a discussion panel on the Rugby World Cup which will feature the likes of England 2015 chief executive Debbie Jevans and head of Rugby World Cup Limited Alan Gilpin.

The IRB will also rebrand to become World Rugby which will become the new title for the sport's governing body on November 19.


Shamil Tarpischev is to be asked by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for his position after Serena Williams today accused him of being "sexist" and "racist" following remarks he made about her and sister Venus.

Tarpischev, President of the Russian Tennis Federation, called the American siblings the "Williams brothers" on a Russian television chat show earlier this month.

It led to him being fined $25,000 (£15,500/€20,000) by the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Tour and suspended for a year.

Tarpischev has been a member of the IOC since 1994 and is currently part of its Entourage Commission, which deals with matters concerning the relationship between athletes, coaches, managers, sponsors and all other stakeholders that support athletes.

In a statement yesterday, Tarpischev called the Williams sisters, who have 25 Grand Slam titles between them, "outstanding athletes" but claimed the comment was "taken out of context" and was made "without malicious intent".

The IOC will now seek further clarification of the situation before deciding whether to take any action themselves, which potentially could include referring Tarpischev to its Ethics Commission.

"We take note of Mr Tarpishev's apology and the sanctions imposed by the WTA," an IOC spokesman told insidethegames.

"The IOC will first contact Mr Tarpishev to ask for his position before considering any next step."

Serena Williams, the world number one, today commended the WTA on its swift action in dealing with Shamil Tarpischev.

"Well, I think the WTA did a really great job in taking initiative and immediately taking actions," Williams, winner of 18 Grand Slam singles titles and four Olympic gold medals, said ahead of the WTA Finals in Singapore.

"His comments, I thought, were very insensitive,

"I thought they were extremely sexist as well as racist at the same time, and I thought they were in a way bullying.

"I just wasn't very happy with his comments and I think a lot of people are unhappy as well."