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From Lord’s to two left feet

COGGIE’S CALL

CHRIS COGDALE
[email protected]

There’s been plenty to get excited about over the last few days of sport, so it’s time again to take a look at the ‘Good, Bad, Ugly, and Humourous’ side of sport.

THE GOOD

Masterton Motorplex supremo Bob Wilton and his wife Georgie were awarded life membership of the NZ Drag Racing Association for their outstanding service to drag racing. Bob and Georgie have been the driving force behind the Motorplex, having taken the concept from humble beginnings to a drag strip of international standard, regularly attracting the country’s top drag racers and competitions.

How good is ‘SVG’? If we didn’t already know it, with three Aussie Supercar Championships, two Bathurst 1000 victories, and a host of GT endurance wins under his belt, Kiwi motor racing star Shane van Gisbergen confirmed what a brilliant competitor he is with an astonishing victory in the Nascar Grant Park 220 in Chicago, becoming the first driver since Johnny Rutherford in 1963 to win on debut.

The umpires in the second Ashes test at Lord’s for getting the two contentious decisions spot on.

The first, the diving catch by Mitchell Starc, clearly touched the ground, and he did not have control of his movement, so not out. The second, the Jonny Bairstow stumping, was simply dumb. The ball wasn’t dead, and Bairstow just went for a wander, and wicketkeeper Alex Carey did the rest.

Kiwi golfer Daniel Hillier holed two eagles in the last four holes to come from nowhere and win the British Masters, earning his biggest payday [about $970,000] and qualifying for this month’s Open Championship.

THE BAD

Fifa banned players from wearing rainbow armbands at the upcoming World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, ignoring a prime opportunity to show the world’s biggest game’s support for the LGBTQIA+ community.

As Australian captain Sam Kerr said, it was disappointing but not surprising and not worth the risk with yellow cards dished out to “offenders”.

But come on, Fifa, isn’t it time to move into the modern world and show support for the many LGBTQIA+ players in football, or are you too scared of missing out on cash from the repressive regimes with woeful human rights records that bankroll the beautiful game?

Ben Brooking, on the attack against Martinborough, was missing his kicking boots in the big win over Gladstone. PHOTO/GRAEME BOWDEN

THE UGLY

The reaction from Lord’s members [wonderfully described by Telegraph chief sportswriter Oliver Brown as “egg-and-bacon ties”] led to unprecedented scenes of jostling and abuse thrown at the Aussie cricketers after Bairstow’s dismissal.

The fire was later fueled by English captain Ben Stokes and coach Brendan McCullum, who both would struggle to lay claim to sainthood for some of their antics on the cricket field.

If that wasn’t enough, any other Brit who wanted to throw in their five cents worth, including PM Rishi Sunak, did so, with some claims it was another “underarm incident”.

Get over it, the correct decision was made, and I repeat, Bairstow was dumb and paid the price for his stupidity. But hey, doesn’t it make for a spicy final three tests?

THE HUMOUROUS

Carterton fullback Ben Brooking had a day to forget with the boot in the final round-robin game against Gladstone.

The normally reliable goal kicker only managed two conversions from his 10 attempts, but there appears to be good reason for his below-par effort – two left boots.

Brooking last week purchased a new pair of boots in the Hutt Valley, but when he gleefully opened the shoebox at Gladstone, guess what – it contained two left boots!

A quick emergency call went out to club stalwart George Rodger to find a pair of size 10 boots in the stockpile at the Carterton clubrooms and get them out to Gladstone pronto while Brooking borrowed another pair to warm up.

The new pair arrived, but it made little difference, and the forlorn kicker was left to endure the friendly taunts and turn down the wagers offered by the good-natured Carterton supporters.

Kerr said, it was disappointing but not surprising and not worth the risk with yellow cards dished out to “offenders”.

But come on, Fifa, isn’t it time to move into the modern world and show support for the many LGBTQIA+ players in football, or are you too scared of missing out on cash from the repressive regimes with woeful human rights records that bankroll the beautiful game?

Chris Cogdale
Chris Cogdale
Chris “Coggie” Cogdale has extensive knowledge of sport in Wairarapa having covered it for more than 30 years, including radio for 28 years. He has been the sports guru at the Wairarapa Times-Age since 2019.

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