The St. Kitts & Nevis (SKN) Patriots announced yesterday that former West Indies Coach, Phil Simmons, will become the new head coach of the franchise for the 2017 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) season.“We are happy to announce that Phil Simmons is the new head coach of the SKN Patriots”, said Co-Owner & Principal, Uday Nayak. “We expect that Phil’s experience and local knowledge will help the Patriots achieve improved performances in our 2017 Hero CPL campaign, and will bring the ultimate success that our fans and sponsors deserve”.The Patriots owner described Simmons as “the right coaching choice at this very crucial time in the development of our Franchise.”Commenting on his new role, Coach Simmons said, “I am delighted to take up the role as Head Coach of the SKN Patriots. I would like to thank the owners and management for offering me this exciting opportunity to lead the squad.I am aware of the immediate challenges we are facing and I will do all possible to ensure that we achieve improved results”.The new Patriots coach expressed his delight that the franchise had just last week signed star batsman Chris Gayle, “I am very pleased with the recent signing of Gayle.This is a major boost for me coming in as the new coach and I look forward to working closely with Chris to bring the desired success to the St. Kitts & Nevis franchise”.Phil Simmons is himself a former explosive West Indies batting all-rounder. He retired from being a professional player in 2002, before embarking on a successful coaching career.Simmons is former coach of the Ireland national cricket team from 2007 to 2015, a period of significant improvement for Ireland’s ranking in world cricket. Simmons is best known for coaching the West Indies team to victory in the ICC World T20 in India earlier this year. (CPL Media Release)
The Wisconsin women’s hockey team bested St. Cloud State in both Friday and Saturday’s meetings last weekend, sweeping the series.The No. 2 Badgers (6-0-0, 4-0-0 WCHA) remain perfect in the season as they tallied two more wins on their record, elevating them to a total of six wins and zero losses.Sophomore Annie Pankowski has scored in every game this season. The Badgers are out-scoring opponents 35-2 on the year.But the most pleasant surprise this season has been UW’s stellar defense throughout their almost-perfect start, having only allowed two goals the entire year. At his weekly news conference Monday, head coach Mark Johnson said the returning pieces to his defensive scheme and the team’s overall attitude has led to the unit’s success.“Keeping the puck out of our net is certainly something we are going to be confident in,” Johnson said.Johnson is still skeptical of the idea that these near-flawless numbers would continue to be so strong as the season progressed, especially against UW’s next opponent in No. 6 Bemidji State (6-0-2, 3-0-1).“In the next month we will get to know more about our team,” Johnson said. “And it [playing Bemidji State] will certainly be the biggest test we have up to this point in our season.”Johnson said if the team is going to get better, they need to follow a system.“It’s a process of everyday — you have to come to practice, and you have to give it your best and practice hard,” Johnson said. “And then on the weekends, it’s like a test.”A true “test” awaits the Badgers this weekend, as they prepare for this Top 10 matchup. Puck-drop is at 7 p.m. Friday night and 3 p.m. Saturday at LaBahn Arena.