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Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Mack the Knife

In just over a month Gav and I are off on our hols. Weird hols I know but we're off to Bermingham to see Macklin fight for a European title fight.  I decided before going I should learn some more about Macklin and be more clued in. So where better go to go then the Almost Daily Sports Blog to share my new words of wisdom!

Born in Bermingham Macklin is considered to be an Irish pro boxer. We'll claim anyone with a loose Irish connection! But here I can't blame us for claiming him as our own. He's one hell of a boxer. The Tipperary Tornado is the former Irish, British and European middleweight champion. Hence why we love him so! September 2001 saw Macklin turn pro and leave his amateur days well behind him. Round One saw Mack the Knife Macklin beat the previously unbeaten Ram Singh from Wisbech in Glasgow. 
2006, the Jamie Moore fight was considered to be THE FIGHT OF THE YEAR! Everyone was talking about it. And then Macklin was beaten. Summer 06 saw Macklin hand the over the Irish Middleweight title to the Dub-Jim Rock. John Duddys matchmaker Jim Borzell said to Macklin "the European title then maybe you'll have something John wants." Macklin replied that he may have something that Duddy doesn't want right now. 
Macklin beat Rafa Sosa Pintos in late 09 on points bringing him even closer to a shot at a world title fight. He's since given up his European title fight to try for the world title. Since so far it hasn't worked out the way he wants he's going back to fight to regain his European title. This is what we're off to see in mis September. WOOHOO!
I've spent a while looking at some of his fights and this one is the one I've decided is one I really enjoyed!!  (I must say sorry for only having a link and not the actual video here-I've no idea how to do that trick that Gav does so a link will have to do for now!!)

Macklin is a fighter I am really looking forward to seeing. I really can't wait!! 

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Fantasy Premier League Results wk1

A wee reminder!
It's premier league season again and I've had a quick look at the table as it stands in the fantasy league.
Congrats to Paul McDonagh who started off in flying colours with 73 points, followed closely by moi with 68. Our own Gavin is currently sitting in 5th place. If you wanna join in the madness again this year the link to the website is here and the code you need to join is: 725971-165763 and off you go!
We'd love to see you and hear all your opinions...HINT HINT
We're also looking for the goal of the month each month, Gavin has already chosen his. Which one is yours so far? Who scored it, have you a youtube clip? We'd love to see if anyone out there agrees with our own Mr Grace! It would be a first if anyone did :)

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Antonio Pettigrew RIP

It's emerged in the last few hours that the 1991 World 400m Champion Antonio Pettigrew has died.  Pettigrew was 42 years old, and leaves behind a wife and child.  A drugs overdose is to blame - it's not yet known if that is accidental or otherwise.

Pettigrew was a controversial sprinter, given that he admitted taking performance enhancing drugs.  He handed back the gold medals that he won in the relays at the 1997 and 1999 World Championships, and his transgressions meant the USA were stripped of their 4x400m Gold Medals at the Sydney Olympics in 2000.

It's too early to speculate what may have happened Pettigrew - I don't intend to do that here.  What I will say however, is that his untimely and tragic death is reminiscent of those of Marco Pantani, Florence Griffith Joyner and a host of other athletes who have taken drugs to improve the careers, but ultimately lost their lives at a young age.  Performance enhancing drugs, despite distorting competition, are also extremely dangerous to one's health and deaths such as these should be a reminder, as if one were needed, that they must never be tolerated.

I've included a video of Pettigrew in action, the best I can find.  May he rest in peace.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

A-Rod Reaction Reveals Baseball Ambivalence

This week, Alex Rodriguez has hit his 600th home run in Major League Baseball.  It’s a feat which puts him in 7th position in the all time home run list, and at the age of 35 he still has a good chance to surpass Hank Aaron, Barry Bonds et al and become the leading home run hitter of all time.

To understand the significance that this event would have had in years gone past, one must realise the special place held by baseball in American society.  There was a time in which it was more than a sport – it was also a pastime, as intrinsic a part of American society as apple pie and the 4th of July.  Also, more so than any sport popular in the States, baseball has historical resonance – A-Rod’s numbers are comparable to those of Babe Ruth, for example, because they played the same largely individual game, even if they did so in different eras.  Therefore milestones such as 600 home runs are moments to be celebrated, a time in which heroes are to be revered.


The reception to this landmark, which bear in mind had been coming for some time, has at best been muted.  Fans, pundits, and even A-Rod himself have acknowledged that this moment is not as special as it once was, and perhaps should have been.  That is for one simple reason, steroids.

Like the aforementioned Barry Bonds, and along with the likes of Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Roger Clemons (and a heck of a lot more), Rodriguez’s career has been tarnished by his use of steroids.  He has acknowledged that he has cheated in the past, but such revelations naturally impacted on his popularity.  Once the special one, the sport’s future Golden Boy, he is now hated by some, and certainly disliked by many, yours truly included.  He is a cheat, and cheats should be castigated and excommunicated, of that there is no doubt.

But let’s look at this a different way, just for a moment.  Alex Rodriguez took steroids in a time where other players took steroids too.  Drug use, for a long period of time, was rampant.  Did he cheat?  Yes.  But did he gain an unfair advantage?  Well, probably, but he did so at a time in which several of his peers were doing the same.  Pitchers such as Clemons, who Rodriguez faced throughout his career, were also on steroids so why shouldn’t he?  It’s an argument I don’t like, but it’s a reasonably valid one regardless.

The sport itself seems to validate it by not imposing heavy suspensions on the likes of A-Rod when their transgressions emerge.  Bonds and McGwire still hold their respective home run records, with not even an asterisk alongside them in the official record books, and the same stands for Rodriguez who has taken performance enhancing drugs while soaring through the rankings.  Though they have competed in this tainted era, and though their records are tainted, the sport itself has not acknowledged this in the way that athletics would, stripping cheats of medals and records.

Until baseball does this, until it takes corrective action, until Bud Selig admits that they got it wrong and allowed this to happen and until the integrity of the game is protected, then muted receptions like the one we have seen this week will continue.  The ‘meh’ response from fans must act as a wake-up call to those in charge, though why it would happen now and not before I don’t know.

Heroes who should be heralded will be disliked, and innocent players will have unfair doubts cast upon them.  The sport as a whole will suffer, and its role as America’s past-time will be consigned to the past.

Monday, 2 August 2010

That Time again!

Well our Mr Grace is up the walls at work and I'm up the walls with study for pesky exams that start next week. But I very nicely took time outta my busy study night to do this VERY quick post.
Last year we had a wonderful Alost Daily Sports blog Fantasy Premier League and I wanna do it again this year!!
I went and set one up again! I'm sure Gav is delighted to hear it! It's very easy to join in and you have weeks to join us! All you need is to click here to be directed to the home page. Register your details.....it's very easy and then to join us in our own personal league you need to go to league on the tab to the left as you look at it and type in this code: 725971-165763 It's just that simple! Pick your team and off you go! The rules are there ready for you to read and at the end of it the season I hope to say 

HAHAHAHA I won :) Best of luck!
Looking forward to kicking some ass again this year!