TODAY marks the final racemeet before Christmas, and with the 10-race programme offering a $5.4 million Pick-9 carryover, a payout in excess of $8 million looks a real possibility.Three trophy races will be run on the afternoon, including the annual renewal of the Sweet Ruckus Trophy over 1400 metres for native and imported two-year-olds, with a purse of $850,000.The other trophy races on the card are the round-five Stewards’ Cup for maiden two-year-old colts and geldings, and the Restricted Allowance II for the Titania Trophy over 1100 metres, which is confined to fillies and mares.The Philip Feanny-trained BUBBLING KITTEN, who impressed in the Dye Job Sprint, over 1200 metres, on December 12, renews rivalry with the runner-up and then-favourite, BLUE DIXIE, in a small field of six, and judging from the manner of her victory, she looks hard to oppose.Dye Job SprintBUBBLING KITTEN beat BLUE DIXIE by all of six and a half lengths in the Dye Job Sprint, covering the distance in the smart time of 1:13.1 under former champion jockey Wesley ‘Callaloo’ Henry, who again has the ride.With the tongue tie fitted for that race, the bay filly, by Blue Pepsi Lodge out of Shanna D, showed good speed to dispute the early lead with RALLY BABY and skittered away on entering the straight for a facile win, behind splits of 23.0 and 46.1.She is still extremely fit, and with the additional furlong no obstacle, should lead home Gary Subratie stable companions BLUE DIXIE and GOLDEN GLORY.Subratie indicated last Saturday that BLUE DIXIE had some minor issues for the Dye Job Sprint, but is expecting a better race today, and has called up outgoing champion jockey Dane Nelson to try and make a difference. BLUE DIXIE looks a safe exacta horse.I also like the well-advanced newcomer, SIR RAJA BABA (working well) to lead home EQUUS in the Stewards’ Cup, in which nine two-year-olds will run; fleet-footed FIRE ALARM ahead of COMMANDING AVIATOR in the Titania Trophy; MESSITHEGREAT to recoup losses in the sixth; CRUCIAL VALOR in the seventh; and PRINCESS SHEMIKA to stave off CHEERS in the eighth.
A 43-year-old man is currently hospitalised with a gunshot injury after he was found in the Alberttown, Georgetown yard of a businessman who is a not a licensed firearm holder, early Wednesday morning.According to reports, the incident occurred at about 04:10h. The injured man has been identified as Vijay Singh, who has “no fixed place of abode”.The 49-year-old businessman reportedly told investigators that he was awake in his Third Street, Alberttown, home when he heard a noise in the yard. Upon investigating, the man related that he observed, through a window, that there was someone in his yard. The person, he recalled, was at the time walking towards the gate and was pushing a bicycle.As such, the businessman got his unlicensed Ruger 9mm pistol, went downstairs in the yard and discharged a round in the direction of the suspect, hitting him to his right leg.The Police were then summoned and upon arriving at the scene, they found that a storeroom located at the western side of yard had the door open. It is believed that Singh removed the bicycle and was about to leave with it when he was shot.Nevertheless, the injured man was picked up by the lawmen and taken to the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPH) where he was treated and is currently admitted under guard.Singh is expected to be charged and placed before the court upon his discharge from the medical institution.Meanwhile, the businessman has been taken into custody and is assisting with investigations.
After weeks of encampment and training, a team of Guyanese girls are said to be ready to represent Guyana as they enter into their inaugural CONCACAF U-15 Girls Tournament.Coach Akilah CastelloThe tournament will be hosted at the IMG Academy in Florida, USA from August 6 to 13 and Head Coach Akilah Castello is very confident about the Guyanese team’s chances at the international engagement.As time winds down to the tournament, the coaching staff have revealed that they are focusing on position-specific preparation to emphasise key unit functions with the players as they continue to embed the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) national playing philosophy.While pointing out that the squad had a successful period of encampment from July 8-16 with 25 members participating, Castello said the focus was both unit-specific phases of play and technical repetition.“During the camp, we focused on developing tactical understanding among units of play with a real focus on position-specific coaching. We developed and assessed physical literacy, as well as psycho-social skills and specific communication. The girls would have proven to the coaching staff that they show a real desire to learn and understand the game, but ultimately their drive to wear the badge and represent their country.“The girls are training consistently at their various Academy Training Centres [ATCs], so they came into the national camp with a far greater level of ability than any other previous squad and, most importantly, possess key knowledge of the game. They are exposed to the GFF playing and coaching philosophy on a weekly basis by the nationwide technical staff. This group has a lot of individual talents with the ability to change a game, and it is now our job as coaches to put these pieces together to form an attacking unit built on a rock-solid defensive foundation,” Castello added.The Head Coach said preparations would continue with the Guyana-based squad until departure, which is scheduled for Saturday, August 4. “I’m very optimistic about the girls giving a true representation of themselves as a national team even though it’s their first major competition. The players and staff are continuing with the preparation period emphasising the fine detail in how we play,” he declared.Guyana are scheduled to play their first match in the U-15 Championship against St Lucia on August 6 at 11:00h, followed by Cayman Islands on August 7 at 09:00h, and The Bahamas on August 9 at 11:00h. The play-off will begin on August 10, following the group qualifiers, with the finals set for August 13 at 11:00h.
3 It may have ended in failure, but Southgate saw nothing but positives, adding: “I don’t think realistically we thought we would be a game away from the final and we would have a realistic chance and give as good as we got for 120 minutes [against Croatia].“The only way to grow as a team is to go through the experiences we have had, not just tonight but the two, three previous rounds. In terms of positive experiences, they have had so many.” 3 Croatia are into their first ever World Cup final 3 England celebrate Kieran Trippier’s stunning goal against Croatia Gareth Southgate salutes the fans after England’s World Cup semi-final defeat They were the better side for much of the first half and wasted chances to extend their lead.But they lost momentum after the break and Croatia drew level through Ivan Perisic before Mario Mandzukic snatched victory in extra-time.“The first half we played extremely well,” said Southgate. “We dealt with the pressure of a semi-final really well, probably had good chances to go even further ahead and, in hindsight, maybe it would have been critical to have taken one of those at that stage of the game.“In the second half, we lost a little bit of control of the game, didn’t keep the ball as well. We were the most inexperienced team in the tournament and for a little bit we didn’t have that control.“Extra-time we then got control back, were able to regroup, and the game was very even.” Gareth Southgate has expressed his pride in his England team after their heartbreaking World Cup exit.The Three Lions’ bid to reach a first World Cup final since 1966 ended in failure, as Croatia fought back from a goal down to win the last four clash 2-1 after extra-time. It was an agonising end for the Three Lions, but the team couldn’t have given any more for their manager – and their nation.“I’m proud of all the players and all of the staff because I know they couldn’t have given any more,” said Southgate, speaking to talkSPORT.“I know for some it was their first experience of a major tournament and they have come such a long way in such a short period of time. I am incredibly proud of them.”England had made the dream start in Moscow, taking the lead inside five minutes through Kieran Trippier’s brilliant free-kick.