Wilshere ‘must ignore the critics’

first_imgArsene Wenger is confident Jack Wilshere can fulfil his potential to have a “huge career” – and has told the England midfielder to block out any criticism of his game. Wenger feels Wilshere, who battled back from a hairline fracture in his foot to help Arsenal win the FA Cup last season, just needs to concern himself with his own development and on staying injury free rather than worrying about what the pundits have to say. “Before he was in (Calum) Chambers’ position, then suddenly when you get to 22, the expectation level comes on you,” said the Arsenal boss. “(Manchester United striker Wayne) Rooney has gone through that, now it goes through Wilshere. “I believe at the moment he should not respond to it, just focus on his game. “If Wilshere can maintain to be fit physically, then he will make a huge career. “At the moment, I believe he should just focus on that – being fit, present and to improve physically. The rest will come along. “Yes (he needs to block everything else out), I told him the target is for him to have the whole season being available to play.” Wenger is in no doubt of Wilshere’s character, having watched him come through a run of frustrating fitness problems – including an ankle injury which would see him ruled out of the 2011-12 season, missing both the European Championships and London Olympics. The 22-year-old has overcome several injury setbacks to become an integral part of both the Gunners’ squad and the national team set-up. However, Wilshere continues to find his every move questioned both on and off the pitch, after pictures emerged of him smoking again while on holiday after the World Cup, where Roy Hodgson’s side failed to make it out of the group stages. “He is a guy who when he goes out there, he wants to play, he works hard, but he was out for one and a half years,” Wenger added. “I think he is on target of where he should be. “He is not as far as everyone expected him to be from when he was 18, but he is not as far because he was injured, not because he doesn’t train seriously.” Press Associationlast_img read more

Cricket News ICC ran out of patience with Zimbabwe cricket: Flower

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. New Delhi: Former batsman Grant Flower says the ICC perhaps wanted Zimbabwe Cricket to be more responsible by suspending them for government intervention but doubted if the global body interpreted the SRC action in true sense. The ICC recently suspended Zimbabwe Cricket for violation of its constitution after the current elected members of the Zimbabwe board were suspended by the Sports and Recreation Committee (SRC).Flower said ICC may have wanted ZC to put its house in order but actually the current board members were “good people”.“I think over time, the ICC have just been worn down by all the corruption, fraud, and the problems with Zimbabwe cricket not being able to get its house in order. Maybe they thought a jolt to their system would make some people realise what was expected of them,” Flower told ESPNcricinfo.“They would have reasoned Zimbabwe needed to understand that at some stage, you’ve got to put your house in order, and we can’t keep propping you up like we have been doing over the years. I can understand the player’s frustrations, but unfortunately with Zimbabwe cricket, it sounds like the ICC have just had enough.”“….We can go back so many years to when things were very badly run. It’s pretty obvious what was happening at the time and the people responsible who were involved. And I think the current crop of players and the interim board, who are really good people, are being punished because the ICC felt they needed to take a stand.”Zimbabwean Cricket has been in turmoil for many years now. In fact, 14 members, including Flower, had walked out of the system in 2004 when then skipper Heath Streak was dismissed for disagreements on racial quotas in the squad.However, things seemed to get better after former Olympic swimmer and Zimbabwe’s most famous sportsperson Kirsty Coventry was appointed Sports minister.Flower said SRC is a public body and he didn’t seem to agree with the way the ICC has interpreted government intervention in this case.“My understanding is the SRC is a public body and not exactly government. I think there’s quite a big difference there and I’m surprised the media hasn’t picked up on that. The SRC now is slightly more transparent,” he said.“Regarding government intervention, it’s curious how the ICC have decided to interpret that. There are other countries where it’s publicly stated that some of the times that certain things will be discussed and decided at government level. So I think there’s quite a big contradiction there from the ICC,” Flower added.Flower believes ICC decision will prevent Zimbabwe from playing cricket altogether.“Even when we were leaving, there were a good bunch of youngsters coming through that could get the country’s cricket going. But that’s not the case anymore, with even the domestic competitions unable to take place.“For it to be stopped until October at the very least, the guys are probably going to go and play in the leagues, seek a future elsewhere to try and look after their families, So yeah, I certainly think this is far worse.”Flower, who is currently working as Pakistan’s batting coach, sympathised with the current crop of players, and the interim board, who have strived to clean up the mess.“The scapegoats are the players and some of the good administrators. I saw this thing on Twitter about Harare Sports club, it’s a beautiful ground and at the moment it’s just going to waste because no one is being paid and the staff have left,” he said.“It is a sad day, and maybe some of the players are going to move on. Most of the players are still quite young, like Brendan Taylor and Kyle Jarvis, who left their county to return to Zimbabwe. They could still ply their trade elsewhere; it’d be a pity it won’t be for their country of birth.” last_img read more