Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 20th 2013 Contents Issue 119 • Friday, December 20, 2013
Tayé's brand new TV talkshow L.I.V.E! airs
every Monday and Wednesday at 9pm,
with replays on Tuesdays and Fridays at
You can also catch episodes on YouTube
with Dennis Tayé Allen
After a dread 5-0 cut-tail from Liverpool, where his team, Tot-
tenham got a clean out like an overdose of some Trevor Sayers
concoction, Andre Villas-Boas (AVB) was sacked this week.
The writing was already on the wall, with November's 6-0 de-
feat to Manchester City not even a month old.
In a statement, Tottenham said: "The club can announce that
agreement has been reached with head coach, Andre Villas-Boas,
for the termination of his services. The decision was by mutual
consent and in the interests of all parties. We wish Andre well for
It's going to be easy to point fingers, but the Portuguese man-
ager, who had been in charge at White Hart Lane since the sum-
mer of 2012, can't shoulder all the blame for the Spurs' lackluster
start---and, to be honest, eight wins and three draws from 16
matches ain't so bad eh?
Tottenham failed to win any of their matches against the top
eight, picking up just three points from a possible 21. But is this
AVB's fault? The club's hierarchy, including chairman Daniel Levy
and technical director Franco Baldini---who guided the club's sum-
mer spending of £110m on new talent---must take their share of
Ultimately, something had to give, and for the Tottenham
board, the decision had to be made now, while the club still has a
chance of reaching their goal of a top four finish and qualification
for next season's Champions League.
Strangely enough, Spurs are still five points off fourth place
but look as if they have been left behind by the likes of Everton,
Liverpool and Arsenal this season.
This is AVB's second failure in the EPL. Out of his depth in the
politics at Chelsea and now proving incapable of standing up to in-
terference from the board in Tottenham, one must wonder if he
was ever up to the gig for such prestigious clubs in the first place?
Regardless, and with a £4.5m payout, AVB's time in England
seems to be up---for good, if you ask me. I'm sure he's going to
surface in a smaller club, where his ambitions will set the pace for
the guys on the pitch, rather than trying to make oddly matched
pieces picked by a board of directors with too much money to
spend and not enough sense to keep Gareth Bale.
Spurs have gone
back to the drawing
board after sacking
The ICC has suspended West Indies offspinner Shane Shillingford
from bowling in international cricket after his action was found il-
legal. All-rounder teammate Marlon Samuels, who is a
part-time offspinner, has been prohibited from bowl-
ing his quicker deliveries in international cricket.
The pair were reported for suspect action
during the second Test against India in
Mumbai. They underwent biomechani-
cal analysis in Perth on November
29, before the start of the series
against New Zealand.
Shillingford had earlier
been suspended from bowl-
ing in international cricket in
December 2010, a month
after being reported for a sus-
pect bowling action on West In-
dies' tour of Sri Lanka. He
underwent remedial action on his
bowling and was cleared by the ICC in
Shillingford has taken six wickets at 42.66 in
the first two Tests against New Zealand but was
not available for the final match in Hamilton,
which started on Thursday. Samuels has not
bowled in the current series.
Many observers---with a more intimate knowl-
edge and considerably more interest in the game
of cricket---have been questioning the Windies' re-
liance on spinners. Shillingford, along with Sunil
Narine (who is not in New Zealand, for whatever rea-
son) were a central part of that spin attack.
In my mind, spinners have been coming in to the line up
way too early, before the ball has been softened up (from
the pitch, not the opponent's bats) and really suitable for
the kind of movement in the air.
The thing about any new dog and pony show, it gets
stale really fast, and WI needs to get back to the basics.
Get some pacers with the guns and the guile to get wickets
when the conditions aren't perfect. Then, after some chin
English, we can see some spin being useful.
There is trouble brewing in Tacarigua,
where the Save our green space committee
is battling Goliath for the right to keep the
Orange Grove Savannah the way it is.
On the other side of the argument, the
Sport Company of T&T is insisting that the
expansive, state of the art facility it had
started building, will serve the public in a
much more suitable and in a wider range of
ways than the current fields.
What's at stake here?
Tacarigua savannah, which is in the heart
of a thriving middle class community situ-
ated between Tunapuna and Arima, is home
to several community teams and groups
that recruit, train and compete in all levels
of sport. From the Eddie Hart football
league and Sunday cricket to primary
schools who use the playing fields for
everything from sports days and commu-
nity gatherings, the daily users of the cur-
rent facility number in their hundreds.
To the committee, they want to protect
the space for use as it for the casual recre-
ational user to the potential elite athlete.
Their grouse is that SPORTT can build this
facility anywhere else---why destroy one of
the last remaining savannas? The commu-
nity never asked for an elite sport facility
that would be less inclusive and reduce the
scope of usership---so why build it?
There are aspects of this facility that do
make sense---hardly anything is totally use-
less. The community swimming pool, the
upgraded pitches for football and cricket
are all things that anyone would want to
see in their community. (There isn't a com-
munity swimming pool in the
Morvant/Laventille/San Juan catchment.
Come, let's talk. Morvant people could swim
too eh?) But can this process be more inclu-
sive and less deleterious to the recreational
athletes and casual users who don't need---
or want---a world-class cricket pitch or an-
other Mondo track that will fall into
disrepair in five years.
Can SPORTT just fix what's working and
look at other spaces for other things?
There's already the Arima Municipal Sta-
dium---with a velodrome, athletic track...oh...
wait...that get dig up. And the velodrome
needs some repairs. And the pitch is in need
of re-grassing. Hmm...
Thing is, you can't please everybody all
the time, but all these 2,000-plus people
who support the Save our green space com-
mittee are saying is to leave their thing
alone---it's working good just so.
• Hear what the SOGS had to say about
the situation when they were guests on my
new show, On The Record:
The upgrades of the Orange Grove
Savannah presently underway.
Shane Shillingford dismissed
Shikhar Dhawan and Murali
Vijay in quick succession, India
v West Indies, 2nd Test,
Mumbai, on November 14, 2013.
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