TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE PAMPLONA, Spain: SportsMax’s La Liga Experience winner, Calvin Palache, and his partner have already started receiving the VIP treatment with surprises, fine dining, interviews and photo shoots. But that was just the beginning for the couple, as they will have two of the best seats inside the El Sadar Stadium to witness Palache’s favourite team Real Madrid take on Osasuna today. Prior to the game, the couple will get a tour of Pamplona and the stadium and also be granted locker room and tunnel access. “I am looking forward to being pitch side and getting to go into the tunnel and the locker room to get a chance to interact with the superstars such as CR7 (Ronaldo), Sergio Ramos and Marcelo,” Palache, who once played for Jamaica’s Red Stripe Premier League club Humble Lion, said. “I want to see Cristiano Ronaldo up close, take a picture and Facebook it immediately. I am going to take a lot of pictures, and don’t be surprised when I shout ‘King Ronaldo! King Ronaldo!'” When first informed by SportsMax that he was the winner of the competition, Palache thought it too good to be true and enquired if it was a scam. But after travelling out of Jamaica for the first time and touching down in Spain, he has finally come to terms with the fact that this is really happening. “This is just a dream come true, because this is my first time travelling and I actually ended up taking three planes and got to experience so much,” the 28-year-old said. The competition, which is into its second year, has seen SportsMax team up with the world’s most star-studded football league, La Liga, to offer football fans across the Caribbean the chance to win a trip for two to see the likes of four-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo and Real Madrid. Palache’s partner of four years, Tishana Sharpe, is just happy that he has been given this chance and is thrilled she is able to experience it with him. “I am super excited and I am happy for him,” Sharpe said. “He lives for football and went crazy when he found out he won, so I just hope he gets to meet all his favourite players.” firstname.lastname@example.org
Nottingham: Nervous to start with at his maiden World Cup, Australian wicketkeeper Alex Carey says he now cannot wait to challenge India, especially Mahendra Singh Dhoni, when the two sides clash on Sunday in London. Carey’s 55-ball 45 was good support to Nathan Coulter-Nile’s 60-ball 92 in Australia’s 15-run win over the West Indies here on Thursday. The early nerves of playing at a big tournament taken care of by that effort, Carey made some confident statements about the match against India. Also Read – We don’t ask for kind of tracks we get: Bowling coach Arun “Playing against him (Dhoni) in India and Australia, he’s very calm. He always gives himself a chance to finish off the game,” Carey was quoted as saying by the ICC’s official website. “He gives himself time out in the middle. They’re pretty calm heads, they give themselves a chance to finish off an innings. “It’s a World Cup, so I didn’t know too much what to expect. Rolling to the first game in the bus and seeing all the crowd gave me some goosebumps. I thought it was a pretty cool feeling.” Also Read – Bastian Schweinsteiger announces retirement, could join Germany set-up Reflecting on his performance against the West Indies, the 27-year-old said it helped that he was batting with Steve Smith at the other end. “I gave myself a fair bit of time to get my innings going. Speaking to Smudge (Steve Smith) there was plenty of time left on the board. “It was a matter of trying to absorb a bit of pressure, just bat and scrap through as many as we could.” Despite being the less experienced of the two, Carey said Smith didn’t give him any particular advice on how to turn things around after Australia had been reduced to 79/5 at one stage. The defending champions recovered to post 288. “I suppose when I was two off 23 balls he gave me no indication I was doing something wrong, backing up what I was trying to do out there. “There was no pressure from him, so we were fine just going together. I think we know at Trent Bridge, if we give ourselves a bit of time we can score freely,” he said. “I didn’t think it was a bad thing at the time, I guess if you get out we’re 80/6 I gave myself a bit of time to assess the conditions and give the tail a chance,” he added.