Laurie Foster: Supporting Cameron Blazers

first_imgCourtesy of track and field athlete mentor and considerably more, Hugh Scott, Foster’s Fairplay was invited to support a fund-raising. The idea was to stir the pot on assistance for the Cameron Blazers Track Club. Those associated with the sport will recognise Scott, a Calabar Old Boy, as someone who works behind the scenes to give nurture and sustenance to a project in which he believes. Without his permission, this journalist will say no more. Suffice to add that, from personal experience, his passion and commitment have mushroomed to give recognition and reward, which have proven to be of inestimable value to young athletes. Cameron Blazers, the relatively new track and field learning institution, is founded and administered by 1983 Helsinki 400m World champion, Bertland Cameron. It was the inaugural staging of the prestigious event. Of those privileged to be listening to the BBC commentary, who can forget mention of “the boy from Spanish Town”, so described one is sure with no intention or desire to demean or disrespect. It was a moment of pride for Jamaica in an era where the ground work was just being laid for the multiple medal scenario that popped out at us, come Beijing 2008 and the (Usain) Bolt and Shelly (Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce) factor. The following year came the Los Angeles Olympics. Expectations ran high. Cameron was at the top of the world in the 400m. In the semi-finals, he stormed out to settle a verbal and mental battle with the United States’ number two man, Antonio McKay, who was talking up a storm about his pending encounter with our boy Bert. Popular feeling is that the focus on the blabbermouth, McKay, led to that extra effort on the backstretch, result a pulled hamstring mid race and what should have been an end to his Olympics. Vividly recalled, is the shout coming from a friend and freight forwarder, Delroy, at whose home in Florida the race was being watched: “He is coming back for them!” Bert was fourth and qualified injury and all for the final two days later. The pain and disappointment of not being able to take his lane and repeat the previous year’s gold medal performance still lingers for some. They form the basis of the wish for him to put his imprint on an event where the world has witnessed and welcomed his immense talent as a performer. With all that history and the potent support in his corner, the former national record holder (44.50 at the 1988 Seoul Olympics) will have his challenges. He has had his comeuppance with detractors, which has been part of the politics of the sport. He is blessed to have in his camp a number of athletes who have already signalled their one-lap value on the global scene. TO THE NEXT LEVEL Coming to mind are Jermaine Gonzales, (national record holder from 2010 with 44.40); Javere Bell, national champion in 2013, 45.00); Jaheel Hyde, still a junior with a 400m hurdles personal best of 49.01 and reigning champion at that event and 110m hurdles at the World Junior Championships and Youth Olympics, respectively. There is also Rosemarie Whyte-Robinson, the 2008 national champion with a then career best of 50.05. Osaka World Championship 200m finalist, Marvin Anderson, now turned coach and administrator, will adapt to the crucial role as manager of the club’s talent. After a stint with the Racers Track Club, Bert is now steering his own ship. This must be the engine he needs to drive his own coaching future. Even with the tools he has already assembled, a lot more is required. There is a template of the ultimate in success established by his former employers, led by the inimitable Glen Mills and their counterparts down the road, in Stephen Francis’ MVP. They did not attain their current lofty perch without strong financial backing. Foster’s Fairplay reaches out to Corporate Jamaica and Cameron’s St Jago High School family, especially the super-active overseas-based chapters, to afford the platform that the Blazers need to move their effort to the next level. Jamaica has blazed the trail in this event, starting with the Helsinki Olympics quartet of Arthur Wint, Les Laing, Herb McKenley and George Rhoden in 1952. If anyone is capable of bringing the country back to that level, Bert Cameron surely can. – For Feedback: E-mail lauriefoster2012@gmail.comlast_img read more

LeBron James captivates crowd in his Los Angeles Lakers debut

first_imgThe opening tip came James’ way and he tapped it to fellow newcomer Rajon Rondo, who threw an alley-oop pass to JaVale McGee for the game’s first score.James missed his first shot, a turnaround fadeaway, but then made a no-look bounce pass from about 27 feet out to Brandon Ingram for a dunk. A minute later, James hit a long 3-pointer.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissHe finished with nine points, three rebounds and four assists in just more than 15 minutes.“It was great to get back on the floor and then just start a new journey for myself and hear the Lakers fans that we have here in San Diego,” said James, who was married here in 2013. “It was great feeling to go out there and hear the roar from the fans here. I very much appreciate it.” LATEST STORIES MOST READ Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:48NBA: Kawhi, George seek more for Clippers than beating Lakers03:53Pope Francis ushers in Christmas with message of ‘unconditional love’02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James dribbles during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game against the Denver Nuggets, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)SAN DIEGO — LeBron James rubbed his hands in chalk powder at the scorer’s table, yelled “Yes!” to ecstatic fans in the first few rows and the Los Angeles Lakers’ new era was underway.Playing in the same arena where Magic Johnson made his regular-season debut for Los Angeles 39 years ago, James captivated the crowd from the start of the Lakers’ exhibition opener Sunday night, a 124-107 loss to the Denver Nuggets.ADVERTISEMENT Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title In 1975, John Wooden coached his final game here, leading UCLA to its 10th NCAA title in 12 seasons. In 1979, Johnson made his NBA debut when Los Angeles beat the then-San Diego Clippers in the season opener. After Kareem Abdul-Jabbar made a buzzer-beating sky hook, Johnson hugged the center like they’d just won the championship. Seven months later, they did win the NBA title.Johnson is now the Lakers’ president of basketball operations and James was the prized acquisition of an offseason roster revamp.As a kid, Walton used to watch his father, Bill, play for the Clippers, although the Hall of Famer’s years in his hometown were largely marred by injuries.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Mexico’s dwarf wrestlers overcome mockery to become starscenter_img View comments Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew The three-time NBA champion, four-time NBA MVP and 14-time All-Star said he played a little more than expected, “and I felt pretty good.”Seeing James in a Lakers uniform for the first time “was awesome,” said coach Luke Walton, who grew up in San Diego. “When you’re coaching the Lakers and you look out and see LeBron wearing your team’s colors, it’ a pretty good feeling.”While the Lakers have a lot to work on, fans hope James’ arrival will turn things around after the worst half-decade in the franchise’s lengthy history.He left the Cleveland Cavaliers for a four-year, $153.3 million free-agent deal with the Lakers.“It always feels different for me anytime you change uniforms,” he said. “It felt different when I changed from wearing a St. Vincent-St. Mary jersey to wearing a Cavs jersey from a Cavs jersey to a Heat jersey, back to a Cavs jersey and now being a Laker. It definitely feels different and takes a little bit of time getting used to.”ADVERTISEMENT Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? He, Rondo and fellow veterans McGee, Lance Stephenson and Michael Beasley signed to team with the Lakers’ talented young core.James was the focus on and off the court Sunday night.He was cheered from the minute he ran onto the court with his new teammates for warmups. He played the first eight minutes before being subbed out.When he came back in midway through the second quarter, he was greeted by a roar.As he stood near the scorer’s table during a video review, a fan yelled: “LeBron, we love you!” and the superstar responded with a hang-loose sign.Walton said James and Rondo “were great. Their commitment to pushing it, defensively. I thought the first group as a whole played really well, to start. Both groups were fouling way too much. They hit 30-some free throws. It’s going to be tough to win a game like that. But there’s some new rules we have to get adjusted to from this summer. The first group I thought played really well, obviously being led by the two of them out there.”Asked before the game what stands out about James, Walton said, “His intelligence. He sees everything. He knows even before drills. He knows where he’s going. His work ethic. He’s out there pre-practice with the guys, post-practice with the guys. Taking care of his body in the weight room.“He’s the ultimate professional.”The Lakers’ regular-season opener is Oct. 18 at Portland. Their home opener is two nights later against Houston.This was another big night for an L.A. basketball team at San Diego’s sports arena. Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plumlast_img read more