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Binnie climbing to the top

first_imgJamaica’s top-ranked squash player, Chris Binnie is on his way to joining the global elite of the sport. The Jamaica and Caribbean men’s squash champion for the last seven years, Binnie, 27, has also improved his Professional Squash Association (PSA) ranking to number 89 among the world’s best players as of this month, from 93 in March. This improvement came after he signed a one-year sponsorship agreement with JN Fund Managers Limited at the firm’s New Kingston office recently. “My goal is to be ranked as one of the top 50 players by December,” he said. “I believe I can do it.” The top 50 players form an elite of the sport, travelling the world to compete in the main events. Having a better ranking means the players get better placed in competitions and also have more options in choosing the competitions they find more attractive. Binnie has come a long way since April of 2012 when he had PSA ranking of 389. He progressed to a ranking of 131 by October 2013 joined the top 100 in November last year. Binnie’s optimism is also based on the success he is having with his new coach, Australian Rodney Martin, a former winner of the World Open Squash Championship who once ranked second in the world. Along with three other teammates, he has been going through a tough training programme to improve his overall match preparedness level, with his new coach. He said the sponsorship by JN Fund Managers would also help him achieve his goal. Based in Connecticut in the United States of America, he coaches at Trinity College in Hartford, and had been limited to playing matches mainly in North America. “This sponsorship allows me to go to more tournaments and select ones in Europe and Asia,” he said. “I need to take on the best players in the most competitive tournaments globally if I am to improve. And it requires funding to get to the matches and maintain myself while competing.” Brando Hayden, general manager of JN Fund Managers, said: “We admire what Chris Binnie has done for himself and for Jamaica. He has invested his time and talents, making him one of the top 100 squash players in the world. “We want to help him fulfil his dreams because his success will also pave the way for others,” Hayden said. Binnie himself launched the Jamaica Squash Association’s Grassroots Clinic to students of Papine High School and New Providence Primary School on March 20. And the programme at the University of Technology is noteworthy for the players who have emerged from that facility.last_img read more

STAR PREVIEW Wales v Andorra

first_img[dropcap]M[/dropcap]y nephew was telling me about his school sports day. Apparently, winning is no longer considered important – it’s the taking part that matters. EVERYONE who takes part gets a badge, no discrimination between coming first or last in the 100 metres !!Everyone goes home happy and everyone’s a winner.I feel the same way about the Euro 2016 Qualifiers which mercifully come to an end tonight. Even West Brom v Sunderland on Saturday is going to seem like punting heaven compared with some of the endless one sided encounters we’ve seen over the last couple of years – and yes, I REALLY do mean years.The bottom line is everyone has qualified who was meant to under the new ‘improved’ (their words) structure which sees more teams in the hat and endless tedium to arrive at the same outcome.Just like the school sports day, everyone goes home with a badge and everyone’s a winner. They’ve qualified, you’ve qualified, I’ve qualified ….. let’s just move on.One of the final acts in this undramatic drama is Wales v Andorra tonight.Wales have already qualified for their first major finals since the 1958 World Cup and Andorra are rooted to the bottom of Group B with nil points. With the pressure off, Wales will be fancied by many to go berserk tonight, scoring for fun, in what should prove a party atmosphere at the Cardiff City Stadium.I’m less convinced there will be too many goals. Wales have scored two goals or fewer in their last 41 competitive matches and only scraped past Andorra 2-1 in the reverse fixture.At this stage of the qualifiers, teams aren’t necessarily over-scoring. Just look at last night… Slovenia were amazingly held 0-0 by the perennial whipping boys San Marino at half-time before going on to ‘only’ win 2-0.Plenty of focus will now be switching to the respective domestic action and at the odds and handicap lines kindly relayed by Trevor Harris at Star Sports I quite like the look of Andorra (words I never thought I’d write). Let me finish the sentence… I quite like the look of Andorra at 6/4 with a three goal start on the Star Sports handicap line.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-50 points)BACK ANDORRA (+3) for 5 points at around 6/4 with Star SportsRETURN SINCE START OF WORLD CUP: PROFIT 161.90 POINTSWhat’s your view? CALL STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321last_img read more