49ers GM Trent Baalke confirms firing SANTA CLARA California (AP): San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke says he has been fired by the team. Baalke confirmed the news yesterday during his pregame interview with the team’s flagship radio station KNBR. The 49ers had no comment on Baalke’s announcement before the team’s season finale against Seattle. ESPN reported Saturday night that both Baalke and coach Chip Kelly are expected to be fired after the season. Lynn frontrunner to become Bills head coach BUFFALO, New York (AP): Buffalo Bills interim coach Anthony Lynn is the clear favourite to take over the job permanently, two people with direct knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press yesterday. One person called Lynn’s succession to replace Rex Ryan as being “the working plan”. Another person said the final decision on general manager Doug Whaley’s recommendation rests solely with owners Terry and Kim Pegula. Both people spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity yesterday because the Bills have not revealed details of their coaching search. Lynn is the Bills offensive coordinator. He was promoted to be the team’s interim head coach after Ryan was fired on Tuesday. The plan to hire Lynn could still be derailed in Buffalo because he is still required to conduct a formal interview. There’s also the potential of other teams expressing interest to interview him for their respective openings. Pakistan’s former cricketer Ahmed dies ISLAMABAD (AP): Imtiaz Ahmed, Pakistan’s former test wicketkeeper-batsman who became a chief selector after his playing career, has died. He was 88. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said Ahmed, Pakistan’s oldest living test cricketer, died Saturday in Lahore following a chest infection. Ahmed played 41 tests from 1952-62, scoring 2,079 runs at an average of 29 and taking 77 catches. He hit three centuries, including a career-best 209 against New Zealand at Lahore in 1955, three years after touring India with Pakistan’s first official test side. “This is a sad day for Pakistan cricket,” PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan said in a statement. “Losing another legend after Hanif Mohammad in the same year is a great loss to Pakistan’s cricket. The entire cricketing fraternity in this country is in sorrow over the sad demise of Imtiaz Ahmed. He was a great gentleman and will be missed.” Ahmed notably took seven catches off the pace bowling of Fazal Mehmood’s bowling to help Pakistan beat England at the Oval in 1954. He served as chief selector from 1976-78 and was a consultant for the PCB’s women’s cricket activities from 2005-08.
President David Granger found him on the receiving end of additional criticisms by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo over comments he made during Thursday’s handing over of the Security Sector Reform Programme report, done with support from the United Kingdom.Granger stated that the former People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government was insincere about wanting to reform the security sector and that the PPP/C was “all a bluff” in this area.Jagdeo, at a news conference held at his Church Street office, fired back at the President on the issue. Jagdeo noted that it is shameful for a President to condemn the work of the previous Administration, when under Granger’s Government the largest security initiative is the Citizens’ Security Programme, which the PPP/C negotiated. “This is their biggest crime-fighting tool right now… and he says the PPP is all bluff,” he said.Currently the Government is rolling out the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) negotiated Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Citizen Security Strengthening Programme (CSSP), he noted.He added that President Granger is “all about ceremony” and the public handover of the report of the Security Sector Reform Project is quite likely because he is “acutely” aware that his Government is failing in the security sector.Taking another jab at Granger’s Government, the Opposition Leader noted that the members of the coalition Government seem to have an “inferiority complex” when it comes to foreigners. “Does it not seem strange or apparent to Guyanese now that this Government has a chip on its shoulder, an inferiority complex for foreigners – one will solve corruption and one will solve crime,” Jagdeo said.UK advisorReferring to the blitz surrounding Sam Sittlington, the UK advisor to SOCU, the Opposition Leader charged that the moves seem deliberate on the part of the Government. “Every time they are on the back-foot, they resurrect SOCU…and true to form, he (Sittlington) seems to have taken over the Government PR (public relations) campaign (in this regard),” Jagdeo said.According to him, the PPP/C is supportive of “any work done properly and objectively” to address corruption, but will oppose witch-hunts and public relations campaigns as seen in the last few weeks.