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I think its for cricket collectively

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      May 14, 2020 4:20 AM MDT
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    SAN FRANCISCO -- Two pitchers making important starts at opposite ends of the career spectrum lock horns Saturday when the Washington Nationals duel the San Francisco Giants. Mike Palmateer Jersey .In the third game of a four-day series between National League division leaders, each team will be counting upon a pitcher who has done little or nothing to help get his team to the top of the pack.For the second time this season, the Nationals are recalling right-hander Reynaldo Lopez from Triple-A Syracuse to start against a playoff contender.The first time did not go well. The 22-year-old was roughed up for 10 hits and six runs in 4 2/3 innings at home against the Los Angeles Dodgers earlier this month.Lopez was impressive in one regard in his debut. He struck out nine Dodgers among the 14 he retired.Nationals manager Dusty Baker announced Friday hed be pairing Lopez with someone with whom hes quite familiar. Pedro Severino, summoned from Syracuse to San Francisco one day ahead of Lopez, will catch the game, Baker disclosed.Washington will be trying to build upon the momentum of two wins to open the four-game series. A triple play, the first in Nationals history, helped save Fridays 4-1 win.Thats the first triple play that Ive seen, insisted Baker, who has 39 years of experience as a major league player and manager. There have been others. But I always seemed to be in the bathroom when it happened.The Nationals have received brilliant pitching performances from right-handers Tanner Roark and Max Scherzer in the first two games of the series, only to have to sweat out exciting finishes once their fate got turned over to the bullpen.Two days ahead of the trade deadline, the Giants will send righty Jake Peavy to the mound to oppose Lopez.The 35-year-old Peavy will be making his 14th career start against the Nationals, the first having come 14 years ago when the club was known as the Montreal Expos.Peavy has won 152 games in his career, but only five in 20 starts this season.That lack of production, coupled with fellow veteran Matt Cains two-win season, has the Giants reportedly active in trade discussions for a starting pitcher at the deadline.Its possible Peavy or Cain, who will face the Nationals on Sunday, could lose his job with one more poor effort.San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy insisted Friday hes more concerned about turning around the clubs recent woes -- the Giants are a worst-in-baseball 2-11 since the All-Star break -- than pondering trades or changes in his starting rotation.It kind of is, really, when you get in these funks, what can go wrong, goes wrong, he lamented. When youre in a good winning streak, the ball bounces your way. Everythings your way. And right now its not going our way.The Giants are expected to have Hunter Pence back in the lineup for Game 3 of the series.Pence has missed 48 games with a strained right hamstring. Grant Fuhr Jersey .Y. -- Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone has drawn on his Syracuse connections once again by hiring Rob Moore to take over as receivers coach. Borje Salming Jersey . Ibaka equaled a career high with 20 rebounds, adding four blocked shots and 15 points as the Thunder smothered the Milwaukee Bucks offence in a 92-79 victory Saturday night. . It might not have mattered. While the Dodgers are preparing for the playoffs, the Padres showed their future has promise behind two rookies. The Caribbean Premier League, which begins its fourth season on June 29, has been praised for galvanising cricket in the West Indies, and for contributing to the regions victory in the World T20 in April this year. Some have suggested the CPL is the third most prestigious domestic T20 league in the world, after the Indian Premier League and the Big Bash. Over 300,000 fans attended matches last year, a 44% increase from 2014. As a sign of its future ambitions, the CPL this year takes the carnival to the United States for the first time - six matches will be played in Central Broward Stadium, Lauderhill, Florida.But the CPL also faces significant challenges. Every season so far has made a loss. This year, three days before the tournament began, the hosts of the semi-finals and final were still unknown. In the longer term, the ECBs determination to reform and modernise domestic T20 cricket could create a problem for the CPL if the competitions clash.Damien ODonohoe, the leagues chief executive, speaks about the challenges and the opportunities the CPL faces in a year in which it will go head to head with West Indies home series against India.Whats the character of the CPL? I think when you see the CPL it really is the Caribbean people and the Caribbean flavour - thats what makes it so different. We call it the biggest party in sport, and thats really what it is. The atmosphere, the party, is like nothing youve ever experienced. Thats why for us its not hard to convince some of the biggest players in the game - like Brendon McCullum, Shane Watson and AB de Villiers - to come and play, because its six weeks in the Caribbean, playing in packed-out stadiums, with atmospheres that youd usually expect at a rock concert.How much of a challenge is the clash with West Indies Test series against India? I see it as an advantage. It means the Indian media will be there, Indian players will be there, and that can only be a good thing. People in the Caribbean love their cricket, they love the CPL, and I think the whole of cricket in the region is really on the rise as a result of CPL and as a result of the West Indies win [at the World T20]. So I think us going side by side, like what the Big Bash do, will work fine.Are you in competition with the West Indies? No. The games are being played on different islands, so I never see it as a competition. The West Indies Cricket Board are partners to this. We run our product and they run theirs. I think the success of the CPL can only help West Indies.What are the main challenges the CPL faces? You can see the amount of money that we put in, and the level of players, and just how far CPL has come in a short period of time. One thing thats a big part of this working financially is the public-private partnership. Thats why working with the governments is so important, because theyre the ones who really gain most. Ninety-three million TV viewers last year - what a way to promote the Caribbean. You wont find a better way than through this, and especially into markets that are very important to them, like the UK and the US.Thats why we made the deal with Dave [a British TV channel] to get the CPL onto free-to-air TV in the UK, so that we get more eyeballs as we try to build our brand. Making the books balance is always a challenge, because of the level of event we produce, and some things are completely out of our control.We tender the finals, and last year it couldnt have been a bigger success than it was in Trinidad. The government there paid a decent sum - US$3.5 million - to get the finals last year. Now were still in negotiations in relation to the finals, because Trinidads economys been badly hit with the oil prices and theyre in a deep recession. They dont have that level of money to pay, which is a big challenge for us because thats a very important revenue line for us. What I explained to the government is that the final is one thing, but actually supporting the team is a huge part of making CPL work long term.Whats the time frame for when the CPL will start making money? We came very close to breaking even last year, and until I get this finals deal settled, I dont know where were going to stand. At this point, its so disappointing, because weve been in negotiations with the governments for a long time. But sometimes theres things which are out of our control. Our sponsorship, our TV - its all moving in the right direction. Were making great progress, but theres been a lot of money invested in this - more than $20 million to date - and it is a very expensive tournament to put on.How do you assess the conflict between the West Indies players and the board? I cant make the terms of what Chris Gayle does. The cricket landscape is changing as a result of these T20 leagues. Players have a little more power and a little bit more ability to make their own decisions and create their own schedule. I think thats something that needs to be looked at across the board, not just in the West Indies.Are you hopeful that the partnership between Kolkata Knight Riders and Trinidad will herald a greater Indian involvement in the tournament? I think its going to be very exciting. The people of Trinidad are very excited about it, the KKR people are very excited. What the KKR guys want to look to do now is building a relationship with Trinidad, so that they bring some of the young players and coaches, hopefully, to India next year, so that they can really work at grass-roots level in terms of developing players and coaches and backroom staff. I think its going to be a really exciting time over the next few years to see exactly what they can do in a market like Trinidad, which is the biggest cricket market of all in the Caribbean.How do you promote the CPL in the islands that do not have teams? We are promoting it. Its a very expensive event to run, so we really have to concentrate on our six markets, and getting that right. But we have had other Caribbean islands reach out, because theey want to look at possibly even taking a franchise there. Connor Carrick Jersey. We moved the franchise from Antigua to St Kitts & Nevis a couple of years ago. The St Lucia franchise is for sale, and theres some discussions of maybe buying that and possibly moving it. But at the end of the day, thats for the government to come to the table and do a deal to make sure it stays.What would be a success this season? Getting packed stadiums; a TV audience grown from 93 million to, Im hoping, 125 million. Itll be getting the stadiums packed in Fort Lauderdale. And I think itll be, hopefully, having a few - I cant imagine theres going to be a huge amount of Americans there, but definitely getting some, and getting maybe some of our celebrity names to be there and really raise the profile, to put on a first-class event.How can you keep ticket prices affordable? Of course you make money from tickets, and thats what the franchises do. They now run their own franchise, and ticketing is a big part of that. What we urge and work with the franchises to do is keep the tickets very reasonably priced, because some of the markets in the Caribbean are depressed, especially this year. Thats why we want to be affordable to everybody. T20 is bringing a whole new audience to cricket - women, children - and we want all of those guys to be able to come and enjoy the CPL.Is there a tension between playing matches during the day - which is better for overseas TV - and playing them at night, which is better for locals? Thats what we tried in year two. And what we realised is that you cant change the local product to please the international market, because at the end of the day its a Caribbean product for Caribbean people. And they love to party, they love to come out at night time. Its just not the same sort of adventure in the day that it is at night. Thats why weve come back with a few 12 oclock games this year, but the vast majority of our games are in the evening.But thats why were looking at other opportunities. The great thing about this franchise model is that you can take it places. Were taking it to America this year. Weve had guys from Hong Kong, from Singapore, reach out to us about taking some games there, and also even Dubai. That would obviously open us up to the Asian market. Well get through this year, regroup, and have a look at the tournament, have a look at some of those opportunities, hopefully outside of the region as well, so we can help grow and develop the CPL like we planned.How important is playing games in the US this year? Its a first step, so lets see. The ticket sales have been really strong. Weve got 60% sold. So lets take it one step at a time, get the US right. Its taken three years to get the Caribbean piece right, so well see how that goes. If we make a success of that, there will be some decisions to make post-tournament.How supportive has the government in Florida been to taking the CPL there? They have been very receptive to the idea, and love the fact theres a stadium that is the only cricket stadium in the US and doesnt get much use. I think theyre delighted to see something like the CPL come. They are getting six games this year. Im sure theyre hoping for more next year.Where could there be new franchises? I think ideally, when you look at it - New York and Toronto - youve got to look where the big diaspora markets are. Thats why we look at the sales. Over 50% of our sales for Fort Lauderdale this year are from New Yorkers who are flying down. So I think New York and Toronto - if we had a choice, and there were stadia - would be our No. 1 and 2 choices.I think its for cricket collectively to look at what football has done and the plans that theyve had - like hosting a World Cup there. Could the new franchises be in place for 2017? Thats definitely possible, but its only possible if thats in agreement with the ICC. USACA arent involved in the US anymore. Everything goes through the ICC, so well be sitting down with them in September and discussing what the future is with the CPL in the US.Is six teams optimal? I think six teams in the Caribbean is optimal. If we had the chance to take a couple of teams into the US or Canada, that would be brilliant. But I think eight, really maximum ten, would be where we get in time.How do you manage the potential conflict between the CPL and the English domestic T20 competition? Weve had discussions with the ECB, because we have that window that is so important to the ECB. Weve spoken with Tom Harrison [the ECBs chief executive], because obviously if theyre to do any type of franchise league they would want to have the best players in the world, a lot of which we have attracted. And likewise, wed love to have the English players play in the Caribbean. Theres got to be a way where we can all work together to make sure that were not crossing over at the same time.How are you managing the clash at the moment? We are speaking with ECB, as they ultimately want our window. So we are working with them to find a solution so we can get the players and vice versa, as it makes no sense competing with each other.Where do you see the CPL being in 2020? Its already the No. 1 sporting event in the Caribbean. Stadiums are packed out. Were seeing stars come through like Carlos Brathwaite, who was spotted in the CPL and is now a worldwide star. I really want to see more of that. Ideally, as I said, if were going to have a franchise in the US, or a franchise in Toronto, that would be hugely exciting, and that would be the ultimate dream. But we want to just make sure that we get everything right this year. The eyes of the cricket world are going to be on us in July at Fort Lauderdale. We want to just make sure that those stadiums are packed, that theres real awareness for cricket, and we make a big success of it before we look at anything bigger. 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      March 28, 2018 1:16 AM MDT