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Good Week/Bad Week: Sports Round-Up

Posted on 2nd November 2009. One Comment

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Tom Brown looks at the winners and losers of the past seven days in sport…           

Winners

  • chris_hoy_main_18-04-06Chris Hoy: 33 years old, knighted and four Olympic golds in total. After a career-threatening injury, it’s perhaps difficult to see what Chris Hoy’s motivation to return the top of the cycling world would have been. But whether it was the thought of more gold medals, the London Olympics or a desire to simply be the best, one of Britain’s most successful ever Olympians is back, and he’s already in imperious form after winning three gold medals at the Track World Cup in Manchester. Hoy wasn’t this week’s only winner in the world of British cycling though; in the men’s sprint there were four British cyclists in the top five. It’s almost a little unnerving seeing Britain so dominant in a sport.
  • Phil Brown: it hasn’t been a great week for the Hull City manager in terms of results, but the fact that this man is still in a job is an absolute miracle. Three league wins in over 10 months, yet he’ll reportedly still be in the dugout this Saturday. I bet even he doesn’t understand how.
  • Colin Fleming and Ken Skupski: with Andy Murray slipping down the rankings slightly and Great Britain getting relegated in the Davis Cup, it hasn’t been a great few months for British tennis. So when a success story does come along, we should enjoy it. This week it came in the form of Colin Fleming and Ken Skupski, the British doubles pair who won their second ATP title in Russia and with it entered into the top 50 doubles players in the world. This kind of firepower should hopefully be enough to destroy the mighty Lithuania in the next Davis Cup tie.
  • All nine players sent off in the Premier League: you’ve got to feel sorry for these Premier League footballers. For about three months now they’ve been training every day, whilst playing up to two whole matches a week. They’re bound to be feeling a little tired. So why not take a rest? Because of the international break in two weeks’ time, every non-international player who received red at the weekend has got at least three weeks off now. Excellent timing.

Losers

  • Rafa Benitez and the Liverpool team: it’s difficult to know whichrafa-benitez one’s the biggest loser this week….so I’ve put them both in. Six defeats in their last seven games – when does a poor run of form become simply a poor season? Their reliance on Torres is becoming too great and their Carling Cup exit especially once again highlighted their lack of quality and depth in their squad. Yes, Gerrard’s injured and yes, their main summer signing Aquiliani is yet to start a match. But Liverpool are slipping up far too often; in a matter of weeks, their season goal has gone from winning the title to qualifying for the Champions League.
  • Paula Radcliffe: although it seems harsh calling her a loser after a valiant effort on her return from injury, it’s not like she often gets called that. Sunday’s New York Marathon was only the third marathon defeat of her career (the other two being those two infamous Olympic marathons in Athens and Beijing). Whilst this statistic may not be too much cause for concern, her ever-growing list of injury problems probably will be. She’s just spent six months out with a toe injury and she’s claimed tendonitis denied her victory at the weekend. It’s less than 1,000 days until the London Olympics so let’s hope most of those days are injury-free for her.
  • OUT064754Andre Agassi: this really was a strange story; Agassi’s revelations that he lied to the ATP about ‘accidentally’ taking crystal meth in 1997 effectively put his whole reputation on the line just so he could sell a few more books. What made is so strange though was how little it has damaged his reputation. The five time Grand Slam winner is seemingly such a popular figure that a whole host of current players (including Andy Murray) have come out saying they won’t let it tarnish their view of him. This almost made him a ‘winner’ of this week, but Andre Agassi is officially a drugs cheat and, whether you like him or not, that makes him a loser.
  • The families of the England cricket team: I hope they made the most of seeing their nearest and dearest last week, because the England cricket team are in South Africa now and won’t be finished until next year. Although they’re mainly there for a Test series, before they can even think about that they’ve got six weeks of tour matches, Twenty20s and ODIs to contend with. The Test series finally starts on December 16th and lasts for over a month. Now, I like cricket and because of that I’m thoroughly looking forward to watching the Ashes winners take on the world’s number one Test side. But 17 matches (yes, seventeen) over a period of almost a quarter of a year is bordering on the ridiculous.
  • Newcastle fans: their team may be third in the league (at the time of writing) but off the pitch things are really going from bad to worse. There wasn’t much owner Mike Ashley could have done to make his relationship with the fans any worse, but he somehow managed to find it. Selling the naming rights to St James’ Park may give the Magpies a bit more cash, but in eyes of Newcastle fans St James’ Park is more than just a name; opened in 1892, has seen more than a century of Newcastle’s history. Plus, the ‘Adidas Arena’ just sounds lame.

One Comment »

  • Tom Foley said:

    Tom, did you see Agassi’s revelations the next day about the fact that his hair style was actually a wig? The man’s had an absolute nightmare! The publicity stunts are certainly working…