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Monday, April 22, 2024
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Results, defaults and an ugly tackle

Good firsts, more gold, an ugly tackle and a Borat impersonator all find their way into this week’s edition of the Good, Bad and Ugly of Sport, so without further ado.

GOOD

Post Office Hotel Wairarapa making the Chapple Cup final for the first time tops the bill this week. Convincing wins over Nelson and Whanganui lined up a final with district cricket’s powerhouse Hawke’s Bay. After posting a respectable 282–6 in the 50 overs, Wairarapa were confident of pushing the ‘Bay’ all the way. That was until opener Logan Ryniker-Doull let loose, smashing 137 off 71 balls, as they romped to a six-wicket win in 31 overs.

Wairarapa’s Jake Jonas deserves his own place, scoring his first ‘ton’ [109] for his province and averaging nearly 70 over the three days of the tournament.

Staying with cricket, there’s a bit of a local connection with new Black Cap Will O’Rourke, who snared nine wickets, including 5–34 in the second innings and a record on debut, as New Zealand wrapped up a 2–0 series win over South Africa.

The lanky fast bowler’s father, Paddy, represented Wairarapa in the mid-80s before going on to play 29 first-class matches and 19 List A games for Wellington, while his uncle Matthew also represented Wairarapa in cricket and was a speedy winger-centre for Wairarapa-Bush in their final two years in the NPC first division in 1986 and 1987.

Love it; the Aussie cricketers are in town. There is no one we love to beat more than our West Island cousins, so strap in for a few weeks of scintillating cricket, controversy, and good old-fashioned trans-Tasman rivalry, all in front of big crowds.

Swimming caps off to the Masterton Swimming Club, getting back in the splash after a few years of treading water, with numbers more than doubling and some useful results from recent swimming festivals.

Also in the pool, Lewis Clareburt won Aotearoa’s second-ever world championship gold in the 400 IM, and Erika Fairweather added a silver and bronze to go with her gold to complete the trifecta of medals.

BAD

Defaults, oh how I hate that word in sport, and how the Giants Softball Club must dread those emails or phone calls late each week advising them of yet another WBD. With the under-13s included, the number of defaults against Giants is in double figures and beyond tolerable. It’s time for the Giants administrators to take a stern line with Hutt Valley Softball over what is quickly becoming a debacle of a season off the diamond rather than on it.

The rather sad news of the death of 2021 Melbourne Cup winner Verry Eleegant, who died following complications while foaling in Ireland. The Kiwi-bred mare won 11 group one races and became a fan favourite in Australia.

UGLY

It isn’t the worst I’ve seen, but Sheffield United’s Mason Holgate’s ill-timed studs-up knee-high challenge on Kaoru Mitoma in the 5–0 loss to Brighton in the English Premier League is bad enough to slide into the Ugly category. Interestingly, being shown a red card is nothing new to Holgate, who is the only player to have been sent off in each of the past three Premier League seasons.

What was Australian Olympic equestrian Shane Rose thinking when he “dressaged” down, slinging on a mankini for a fancy dress festival event? Rose was threatened with being stripped of his chance of competing at a fourth Olympic Games, but having reviewed the bare facts, Equestrian Australia cleared the cheeky rider.

The last word goes to the lowlifes who stole four bikes from the Breadcraft Kids Triathlon on Monday evening. The bikes were in the transition area during the presentation, but when the kids and parents went to collect them at the conclusion, the bikes were nowhere to be seen, leaving an ugly taste for competitors and organisers.

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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