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BRIEFS

Published:Monday | April 23, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Pyne chase continues

Jamaica's Charles Pyne, who is chasing a place in the summer's Olympic Games in London, defeated Julien Fuchs of France 21-18, 21-15 in the first round of the Air Tahiti Nui International Challenge 2012. However, after taking the first game in his second round match against Kaveh Mehrabi of Iran, he lost the next two for a final score of 20-22, 21-9, 21-19 on the first day of the tournament, last Friday.

Pyne, who is currently ranked at 98 in the world,will now have to wait until Thursday's release of the world rankings to see if he has done enough to command an Olympic place.

History for Shillingford

ROSEAU, Dominica (CMC):

Buoyant Shane Shillingford is set to create history today when he becomes the first Dominican to play a Test match on home soil.

The tall off-spinner bowled well against the Australians on his comeback to international cricket in the just concluded second Digicel Test in Trinidad and is expected to retain his place in the team for the all-important third and final match at Windsor Park.

"I'm looking forward to the chance of playing at home, being the first one from Dominica to play a Test in Dominica. It's a very special feeling" Shillingford said.

Contrasting fortunes

MUMBAI, India (CMC):

There were contrasting fortunes for West Indians Kieron Pollard and Sunil Narine in the Indian Premier League yesterday. Pollard, better known for his explosive batting, took two wickets for 12 runs in a strangling spell of medium-pace, but Mumbai Indians lost by six wickets with three balls to spare against Kings XI Punjab in Mumbai.

Pollard scored only seven off 10 balls in a total of 163 for six with James Franklin, the New Zealand left-hander, blasting 79 off 51 balls inclusive of six fours and four sixes at the top. Tendulkar made 23 before he was run out in an opening stand of 51 off 8.1 overs.

His fellow Trinidadian, off-spinner Narine, also picked up two wickets for 26 runs for Kolkata Knight Riders, who beat Deccan Chargers by five wickets with one over remaining in Cuttack. The finish, however, was far more tense and hard fought than was expected after Chargers had been limited to only 126 for seven.

Van Persie on top

Hot favourite Arsenal striker Robin van Persie was named PFA Player of the Year, while Tottenham Hotspur defender Kyle Walker was the surprise recipient of the Young Player of the Year award.

Netherlands international Van Persie beat fellow nominees Sergio Aguero, Joe Hart, Scott Parker, Wayne Rooney and David Silva to the prestigious prize. The Arsenal captain scored 33 goals in all competitions, 27 in the Premier League.

"If other people are saying it, it is special, but it is even more special if your opponents are saying it," he told Press Association Sport.

Van Persie was quick to point out it would not have been possible without his Arsenal teammates.

"Without them I could not have achieved it," he said. "For example Theo Walcott, he has given me more than 12 assists and I do really appreciate that."