Gianni Infantino

SECRET MEETINGS: Gianni Infantino

Global football body FIFA has described the decision by Swiss authorities to open criminal proceedings against its president Gianni Infantino last week as grotesque and absurd.

Swiss authorities said on Thursday that proceedings had been launched against the current FIFA boss by a special prosecutor looking into meetings he had with Swiss Attorney General Michael Lauber. Lauber and Infantino have already denied wrongdoing.

“There is no factual basis whatsoever for this criminal investigation,” FIFA deputy general secretary Alasdair Bell told a news conference held by video yesterday.

“There is no description of criminal conduct of any kind that has been communicated to FIFA. There is something a little grotesque and unfair in all this because we are 100% confident there will never be a criminal charge against the FIFA president,” he added.

“But we have a situation where, objectively, there is damage to both FIFA and the FIFA president simply because of the existence of this criminal investigation.”

The AB-BA watchdog, which oversees the Attorney General’s office (OAG), said Thursday that special prosecutor Stefan Keller had found indications of criminal conduct related to their meetings. Keller was appointed in June to review complaints against the two men and others.

The proceedings concerned abuse of public office, breach of official secrecy, assisting offenders and “incitement to these acts,” it said.

“If someone opens a criminal investigation there needs to be a good reason and we don’t have any reasons,” said Bell. “We have some anonymous complaints but we don’t know who made them.”

FIFA said that, at the time of the meetings held in 2016 and 2017, the OAG was conducting investigations in more than 20 cases related to a scandal in which FIFA became embroiled before Infantino was elected president in 2016.

“You go to the most senior law officer in the country to offer information for a criminal investigation and then you end up being a subject of a criminal investigation yourself,” said Bell.

“This is why we are saying there is something kind of absurd about this.”


The Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board (TTCB) has praised the “inspirational leadership” of Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR captain Kieron Pollard) for propelling his team to the 2020 Hero Caribbean Premier League T20 championship.

West Indies cricket needs another T20 tournament.

That’s the view of both Kieron Pollard and Darren Sammy, the captains whose sides contested Thursday’s Caribbean Premier League final.

On the eve of the tournament decider Wednesday, Pollard, the current West Indies T20 captain, said new talent needed exposure that the CPL is unable to provide.

Jereem “The Dream” Richards has his challenges as he continues to prepare for the 2021 track and field season. The Trinidad and Tobago sprint star, however, is confident he will be ready to challenge for honours at the July 23 to August 8 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.

In Canada, they are calling him Akeem “The Dream” Garcia.

Known as “Froggy” in his Trinidad and Tobago homeland, former national youth striker Garcia continued his march to the Golden Boot award in a shortened 2020 version of the Canadian Premier League (CPL), when scoring a league-leading fifth goal of the season for HFX Wanderers in a 1-1 draw with defending champions Forge FC in their first game of CPL’s championship round (Big 4).

Mandatory use of face masks in public is proving to be quite a challenge for shot putter Hezekiel Romeo.

“The mask requirement hinders my breathing during strenuous workouts,” Romeo told the Express, “but I try to use ones that do not make me feel like I’m suffocating.”

There was no Sunil Narine, no Colin Munro, Dwayne Bravo couldn’t bowl, and still, the Trinbago Knight Riders achieved their perfect 12.

Darren Bravo played much better shots than the inside edge that brought him the match-winning boundary in yesterday’s Hero Caribbean Premier League final. But that didn’t matter as he stood roaring in triumph. His teammates responded instantly, racing towards him to celebrate their eight-wicket victory over the St Lucia Zouks and their fourth CPL title, the third in four seasons.