Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Hugh McIlvanney, Ireland v England in Dublin and blindfolded boxing


1) The legendary writer Hugh McIlvanney, “a giant among journalists”, died a couple weeks ago on the era of 84. His finest work was on the net, but McIlvanney has also been an efficient broadcast journalist, as seen in his documentary series ‘Busby, Stein & Shankly: The Football Men – here’s parts one, two, three and four. McIlvanney also wrote and narrated Goal TV – The realm of Georgie Best, first shown in 1970. The Scot experienced a particular passion for boxing. Here they’re in a very 1987 interview with Mike Tyson’s manager, Jim Jacobs, and in conversation with Sugar Ray Leonard.

2) The Six Nations is back fashionable, with Ireland v England this Saturday. England often have labelled the defending champions “boring” recently, but both teams should go some to match this fixture in 1963, a mud-caked nightmare that ended 0-0. It turned out a livelier affair in 2007 at Croke Park, when Ireland thumped their old rivals 43-13 – but continued reduce the title to France on points difference owing to Elvis Vermeulen’s last-gasp try against Scotland. Finally, something for England fans to cheer: a 42-6 thumping that sealed the grand slam in 2003.

3) Super Bowl Sunday is approaching, while using the New England Patriots inside their ninth Big Dance of the Bill Belichick era. The Pats’ first title started in 2002 out of this weekend’s opponents, the Rams – then of St Louis. Not for the last time, second-year QB Tom Brady led his team on the field to set-up a game-winning field goal. That marked no more the ‘Greatest Show on Turf’ – an amazing Rams offense that won the title a couple of years earlier – due to a defensive play forever referred to as ‘The Tackle’.

4) Today in sports stars causing us to feel old: 16-year-old Kelly Sildaru wins slopestyle ski gold along at the X-Games in Aspen which includes a record score of 99, and 13-year-old figure skater Alysa Liu wins the usa national championship.

5) Fun and games in Italy’s lower leagues, as Lucchese coach Giancarlo Favarin sticks one on his counterpart in a very Serie C match:

6) Another skirmish that spilled from the field – in other words, the rink. Texas Tech and SMU’s college hockey match descended in to the longest fight scene since They Live. Should the highlight reel isn’t enough, here’s the whole thing.

Our favourites from in the line last week

1) It’s blindfolded boxing!

2) We all have been in on underarm box cricket.

3) Riding the Pic d’Aret.

Spotters’ badges: whobroughtoranges, GrahamClayton

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