AFL: Roos single-handedly destroys football
They say that absence makes the heart grow fonder, and it’s easy to forget that Paul Roos’ tenure with the Sydney Swans was a lot easier to admire than to love. Memories came flooding back on Monday, when Roos’ Demons served up a footballing gruel so thin that Oliver Twist himself would have turned up his nose.
Judging by the outcry, you’d think that Roos had killed Bambi’s mum with the horn of a white rhino, rather than merely setting up his limited side to snatch a result. Also, Collingwood were about as tidy as Edinburgh Gardens on New Year’s Day, but that was ignored in the rush for Roos’ scalp.
Bumbling runners were affecting the outcome of matches; the holding the ball rule finally tipped into farce; and the bump continued to yo-yo between our world and the underworld like it was Persephone; but it was Roos that drew fire for attempting to prevent his young side from a shellacking on their biggest game of the year.
Evil, evil bastard.
Meanwhile, Darren Glass’ retirement came as something of a shock, particularly to Jarryd Roughead, who didn’t even realise he was playing on him last weekend. In all seriousness, though, ‘Crystal’ was a great servant, and we wish him all the best.
NRL: Half the competition injured by other half
So when your game largely consists of mountainous specimens running into other mountainous specimens like they looked at you funny, injuries happen. Even so, the last weekend of NRL action was particularly brutal, with players essentially drawing straws to find out if they would be victim or perpetrator.
Apparently the Melbourne Storm dressing room figured that with their squad already looking like Keith Moon’s hotel room, they might be exempt from the Hunger Games-style war of attrition that claimed 22 players across the comp. As it turned out, they only lost Mitch Garbutt to a potentially season-ending knee injury.
Football: Evil Empire’s reign of terror commences
A lot of football talk has centred around a beach party or something happening in Brazil, but the big news was happening in Melbourne, as Manchester City began to set up the latest outpost of its evil empire. Sheikh Mansour destroyed over five years of tradition in one fell swoop, turning Melbourne Heart into Melbourne City and discarding their famous red-and-white stripes in favour of sinister sky blue.
Fans of petrochemicals and sky blue were rejoicing, but true fans understood that the signing of David Villa (34) and Damien Duff (35) was tantamount to financial doping, and imperilled the integrity of the entire competition.
Yep, it looks like these two ageing stars will almost certainly spell the end of the A-League that we knew and loved for the past nine years. If they pick up Mike Jedinak as well, then we’ll all be truly stuffed.
Union: Wallabies tease, Les Bleus wheeze
Is this the year that the Wallabies finally re-establish themselves as a rugby force? Fans have been asking themselves this pretty much every year since the dismantling of the 2003 World Cup team, and every year the answer has been a sorta-maybe-kinda-no.
Nothing, though, makes a statement like a 50-23 thrashing – except a 50-23 thrashing against a decent team, of course. France were not a decent team.
Sure, the Aussie backs sizzled – Izzy Folau roamed like a feral gazelle, the Honey Badger got his bit of meat – but the fact that Frederic Michalak had to be brought out of a cryogenic deep-freeze to play fly-half speaks volumes of the quality that France had at their disposal. Apparently, their first-stringers have all found their passports now, so the second test might be a little bit more of a barometer for where these Wallabies are placed. It had better be.
Motorsport: Australian does something good
Sorry Mark Webber, you’ve had your turn. There’s a new name being mispronounced across our sunburned land, and it’s that of Daniel Rich-ardo…Ricky-ardo…Aussie Dan!
Aussie Dan had casual motorsports fans frantically pretending to be knowledgeable, as he muscled his big V6 past Nico Rosberg to get himself a bit of meat in Montreal. The 24-year-old has been knocking on the door all season, and he finally broke through to announce himself as a drive-fast guy to watch. It’s a long season, though, culminating in the greatest test of all: the Bathurst 500. Can Aussie Dan be our first homegrown King of the Mountain since Jack Brabham famously won in a home-made billycart back in 1066?
Only time will tell.
Things to look forward to
That aforementioned beach party happens to be the biggest sporting event in the world, and it’s being held in football’s spiritual home for the first time since 1950. If you aren’t at least considering quitting your job and going nocturnal for the next month, then you’d best have a good hard look at your priorities.