Well, after the incredible success of British athletes in the recent Beijing Olympics, this weekend there were several sporting events around the world in which British sportsmen were taking part, and hoping to further raise the profile of their sport and our country.
ANDY MURRAY – Just one step from becoming a legend!! 🙂
First of all, Andy Murray from Scotland, the successor to Tim Henman as the-man-the-whole-of-the-UK-believes-will-return-British-tennis-to-the-level-of-success-not-experienced-since-the-days-of-Fred-Perry … the 1930s, BEAT THE WORLD NUMBER ONE, the unbeatable Rafael Nadal of Spain last night, in the semi-final of the US Open, one of the four Grand Slam competitions. He now takes on the equally unbeatable Roger Federer of Switzerland in the final at 10pm UK time, which by my calculations is around 6am Tuesday morning here in Japan.
I don’t like watching TV while eating, but tomorrow breakfast time might be different! I used to love playing tennis when I was a kid – John McEnroe was my hero! I tried (badly!) to copy the way he played – not the way he shouted at the umpire, tho it was funny at times. When I was a kid the only tennis on TV in the UK was Wimbledon, and for 2 weeks every year I used to be glued to the screen, watching every single match. That was from about 1974 to the mid-1980s. There hasn’t been anything so exciting in men’s tennis until now, and the rivalry between Federer and Nadal. If Murray can join those two at the top for the next few years, there promises to be some great tennis played. This year’s Wimbledon final was the best since Borg-McEnroe in 1980, in my opinion – and that of many more knowledgeable commentators, too.
Here’s the Borg-McEnroe 1980 tie-break
Here’s the already legendary 2008 Wimbledon final third-set tie break
Question for you! 🙂
Read the BBC article above about Andy Murray’s win, and find out who was the last British man to win a tennis grand slam event, and who was the last Britsh (?) man to reach the final of one of the big four events.
Now let’s turn to motor racing. Lewis hamilton won the Belgian Grand Prix. Or, rather, when I went to bed last night he had won it – Hooray! 🙂 When I got up this morning, he hadn’t! 😦 More crazy happenings in the world of motorsport? What did Lewis do wrong? Well, it appears that he was a bit naughty and didn’t drive where he was supposed to drive. My wife sometimes complains about the same thing when I drive, but I don’t get a 25 second penalty – she just shouts at me! 🙂 Hamilton is still leading the championship, but i seem to remember that he was doing the same thing last year around this time, so we’ll see what happens over the next month or so.
er … Boxing?
Amir Khan, one of Britain’s brightest young boxers, who appears in the London Olympic video getting out of a very nice car, and also whose photo is on the wall in classroom 8 (I think), was fighting over the weekend defending his world title against a Columbian fighter called Prescott. Amir did well getting to the ring, but was then knocked out before most people had taken a sup of their beer: in the first minute! 😦
Finally, socc … I mean football … well, kind of …
And then there was the football. Those millionaire footballers of the English Premiership taking on the giants of Andorra in the Olympic Stadium in Barcelona. There are more people living in Otori (where I live) than live in Andorra, there is more land in David Beckham’s garden than in the whole of Andorra.Andorra, a team ranked 186th best team in the world, a team made up of local plumbers, farmers and shop keepers taking on the one-time world champions, England, the country which invented football. After 45 minutes it was 0-0, at the end it was a fantastic victory for England, 2-0. The manager shouted at a few players, and the England fans shouted at the players and the manager. The only amazing thing about this, because it has happened before anyway, is that there are 20 or so teams ranked below Andorra: England are not one of them, yet!
This was the first qualifying game for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, which many people in England unbelievably still think they can win. On Wednesday night, England play Croatia, a team ranked 5th in the world, who could have won EURO 2008 with a bit of luck. Croatia, the same team that knocked England out of EURO 2008 at the qualifying stages.
My prediction for Croatia against England on Wednesday night is …
If football (not soccer 😦 ) was a science, the result would probably be something like 12-0 to Croatia, but it’s not, it’s an often unpredictable sport, so I think, because England now have an experienced Italian coach, I think the result will be 0-0 – a typically Italian defensive result away from home.
If you think the score will be different, or if you agree with my prediction, post your opinions and let’s talk about it on Thursday. 🙂