The biggest sports story this week was the passing of Muhammad Ali. Ali was a sporting icon and was voted in one publication as the athlete of the 20th century. He had not fought for 35 years and yet my 14 and 22 year old sons knew who he was, I think everyone knew who he was because he was not only a sporting icon, but also a champion of human rights. Ali was a wonderful promoter of the sport of boxing, but also with his 30 year battle with Parkinson’s Disease was also a testament to the dangers of boxing. When I was growing up boxing was a prominent global sport, however, the sport has now lost its way and unfortunately now lost its reatest son.
I read with interest during the week about the likely transfer of Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Manchester United and Jamie Vardy to Arsenal. My feelings here were quite mixed. I thought it would be great to see Ibrahimovic in the EPL even if it is in the twilight of his career as he is still one of the best strikers in the world. However, going to Manchester United gives me no joy at all. With Vardy, I am happy he is considering a move to Arsenal, but equally I would like to see him stick with Leicester City to continue that Cinderella story.
Like most AFL fans I was a little shocked to see Tom Hawkins cop a suspension for his hit on Phil Davis. Yes he hit him in the head, but the degree of force was so minor that Davis threw his head back more in surprise than due to the impact of the strike. If this is the standard of impact that is required for a report why wasn’t Matthew Pavlich reported for slapping Patrick Ambrose in the face on Saturday night! My guess is that Hawkins was carrying an injury and probably needed a week off otherwise they would have challenged the report.
Have a great weekend!
Not much has grabbed my imagination this week. It’s been business as usual on the Aussie sports scene
The Australian cricket team won as expected and the Socceroos also won as expected. Melbourne United in the NBL had been winning before last night with one of their wins with a bit of help from the match officials. Melbourne Victory won the FFA cup as expected. Nothing in horse racing was as near as interesting as the Melbourne Cup, save for the racing being a bit more interesting due to a less biased track.
One thing which has created a bit of discussion around the traps is the UFC event featuring Ronda Rousey at Etihad Stadium this weekend. I am not a big fan of UFC, but I don’t mind it and it is certainly more interesting than main stream boxing these days. I do not subscribe to the view that it is too brutal as I think the sport is well governed and there are probably less injuries in the UFC than there are in boxing. I think one of the reasons why the UFC has somewhat supplanted boxing as the preferred “blood sport” is that it does not appear to be controlled by the likes of Don King and other entrepreneurs and it doesn’t have the multiple factions and associations that have split world boxing. If boxing wants to reclaim lost ground they need to win back the public and have one unified governing body to control the sport world wide.
Have a great weekend!
Well the Spring Carnival is in full swing and this week sees the running of the WS Cox Plate. It doesn’t look to be a classic field, but it is probably the best that can be assembled. However, I do question the inclusion of Wandjina who has been placed in only two of nine starts, but obviously got a start based on his third placing in the Caulfield Guineas. Unfortunately last years winner was a maiden who had similar lead up form so the precedent had been sent, but I don’t think it sends a good message when you tout yourself as the Weight For Age Championship of Australasia. My tip in the race is Fawkner, but they all have to get past The Cleaner.
There was a lot of grandstanding in the corridors of power this week about cage fighting/mixed martial arts. To allow the mixed martial arts fights without the cage, is like boxing without the ropes. The fighters can still hit their opponent the same way, they just do it in different surrounds. What real difference does it make. I have watched a bit of the UFC on Channel 1, but not for some time. It seems to be well adjudicated and from what I understand there have been no catastrophic injuries. If these guys want to fight each other in a controlled environment then I cannot see what the problem is with the use of the cage. I also find the Police Commissioner’s comments about violence a little hard to fathom as well given the acceptance of all types of fighting sports in the community. I have a nephew who is doing mixed martial arts training and I am sure my brother would much rather he practised his sport in a controlled environment, with or without a cage. The proper control is the key, not the cage. Will I go along and watch, no.
Now my last comment this week only has a loose connection with sport because his wife swum in the 1938 Empire Games for Australia. E G Whitlam must surely be one of the most interesting politicians ever produced in this country and I always considered that having spent so long in opposition, once he got into power, he tried to implement too many programmes too quickly. Like a good marathon runner, if he had paced himself his legacy could have been greater. Anyway I can thank him for my tertiary education, a national health system and Blue Poles that I saw in Canberra recently. Vale Gough.
Enough of my own political grandstanding, have a great weekend!
The Panel comprising the Gambler, the Gelding and Paul Dalligan interview bantamweight sensation ‘Aussie’ Joel Brunker who has a pro record to date of 26-0 with 15 ko’s. This is Joel’s third time on Sportzfan Radio. He has fought as an amateur, represented Australia at the Olympics and, like all fighters, is looking for a shot at the title. The Panel enjoy the (verbal) spar. brunker
The Professor and DC Coutta interview Australia’s World Bantamweight Boxing Champion Susie Q Ramadan susie q undefeated after 21 fights with 8 by TKO, she currently has 5 title belts and is the IBF champion.
She talks to the boys about the difficulty getting female sparring partners and her training regime leading into a title fight.
20 May 2012 247.2 – Featuring the Professor, Daniel Eade and Sportzfan Stan with Daniel discussing the NBA playoffs and why he thinks Vinny Del Negro won’t be re-appointed as Clipper’s coach. Mark Fiorenti comes on the show to talk soccer and reviews the Melbourne Victory’s match against Greek champions Olympiacos. He also looks at Chelsea’s success overnight in the European Cup and the exciting last day of the English Premier League that saw Manchester City crowned as champions. Paul Dalligan talks NRL and the State of Origin game. He is not as pessimistic as Nick Tedeschi on NSW’s chances and sees them winning 18-10. He also reviews the NRL round to date and believes the Rabbitohs will win this afternoon. Daniel talks ice hockey and discusses the form of the two Melbourne teams. The Panel then discuss Craig McDermott standing down as Australian bowling coach, Ricky Ponting and Anthony Mundine fighting a 41 year old opponent.
11 December 2011 230.1 – The Panel comprising the Professor, Daniel Eade, Paul Dalligan, the Gambler and Sportzfan Stan lead off the show talking US sport with Dan Butterly including the NBA nixing the Chris Paul deal. He also looks at Major League Baseball talking about the recent free agent moves with the Miami Marlins leading the pack. Paul Dalligan talks NFL with Dan and Paul says he likes the New Orleans Saints. Dan says any team can win on any given day. Tim Tebow, Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders also discussed. Dan revisits the College Football championship game and says every game can’t count in the regular season if Alabama is playing in that game. He likes Robert Griffin III from Baylor for the Heisman trophy. The Panel look at Barry Hall’s announcement that he intends to enter the boxing world and the Professor says he is already 4-0 following his AFL career. There is a discussion about the second test and another poor batting display by Australia. Sportzfan Stan says there are some players in the baggy green who are not good enough and they should be sacked. Mark Fiorenti comes on to talk soccer and he starts with a review of the Melbourne Victory/LA Galaxy game featuring David Beckham. He also looks at how the Victory are travelling at the moment and says they are not getting enough from Harry Kewell.
6 November 2011 225.2 – Mark Fiorenti discusses his pre-season predictions against how the placings are on the current A-League ladder. He says he’ll do a mid season review to compare placings at that time with his earlier predictions. Mark reviews the Melbourne Victory draw with Brisbane Roar and says it is the best live game he has seen this season. He also looks at the Premier League results and says Arsenal has turned its season around in the last few weeks. The Panel then talk about boxing and in particular the world bantam weight title fight being screened on free to air television on 7 mate between Darchinyan and Moreno. Sportzfan Stan says it is a brutal sport and nothing is gained by watching two men try to knock each others brains out. They then discuss Ricky Nixon’s attempted venture back into player management. Paul Dalligan comes on to talk rugby league and the four nations tournament. He is also worried that Russell Crowe may not continue his support of the Rabbitohs. Daniel Eade talks basketball with the Panel and the Melbourne Tigers getting back on the winners list in the NBL. He also talks about ONE HD showing matches at 1.30am in the morning and says it must be programming for security guards. Daniel then looks at the NBA negotiations and says it is quite possible the entire season could be lost. The Professor and the Gelding talk about their love of the Great Western Hotel as a place to have a production meeting. The Panel finally look at the International Series and believe that to survive the games need to be more than just an after thought and they wonder why the best players aren’t playing.
25 July 2010 164.2 – Mark Fiorenti is quizzed whether Jon Bon Jovi is a realistic number 1 ticket holder for Melbourne Heart. The Panel has some fun with some of Bon Jovi’s songs and Gambo worries that the show is moving away from its sporting roots with the music discussion. Mark also previews the A League season thinking Sydney, Melbourne Victory and Heart will be the teams to watch with Perth Glory being the dark horse after the signing of Robbie Fowler. Mark talks about the aborted transfer involving Shane Smeltz due to Smeltz not liking the surroundings in China and thinks it is a bad thing for the League as Aussie players look unreliable. The Panel talk about the proposed 15,000 seat upgrade to Eureka stadium at Ballarat and wonder whether the AFL will fixture games at the venue. Is this an endeavour for North Ballarat to be a 19th team in the AFL?… which would then open the door for a 20th team from Tasmania. Gambo and Daniel ponder whether South Africa and New Zealand may also field teams in the AFL in the future or be preferred to Ballarat and Tasmania. Nick Tedeschi covers the NRL scene in Paul Dalligan’s absence. He thinks Melbourne Storm will need to let Greg Inglis go to keep other stars and some of their second tier players. The level of support for the Storm will depend on their on field performances. He also discusses the Danny Green/Paul Briggs “fight” and believes it is a disgrace that it went on. In Tour de Farce news, did Contador break race etiquette in passing Schleck when Schleck had a mechanical failure with his chain? The Panel thinks so. We sneak a different Dr Leslie CSA in just before the end of the show.