My favorite is still the goaltender who forgot to tend his goal.
I watched that game live on the weekend. Mixed emotions, he lost his team the game twice, missing a sitter kick in front and then blowing kisses to the crowd as he crossed the line not realising the French player would knock the ball out of his hands. He was devastated, the coach took him off pretty immediately and some said that was harsh but you could see his head was gone and he’d be no use.
It’s not NFL, you have to ground the ball. This one is a classic from a former England captain, always makes me laugh.
The Burns one:
As with the Hendry interview though you can see how fragile the mental aspect can be. Maybe he can brush it off and be man of the match next week but maybe not.
I think we underestimate really how much work it takes to get there. You play pool in a pub with mates and do pretty well and then you see a professional match snooker table, twice the size, pockets half the width. It’s quite a shock compared to the ease they have on the telly. I never got a break better than 13 on a full size table and they were all sitting over the pockets!
To hit a 147 must take phenomenal mental strength on top of thousands of hours of practice.
I met a woman who was a professional pool player - she was a hairdresser during her normal job and played pool tournaments on the weekends. It sounded incredibly arduous and took up huge amounts of her free time (her kids hated being dragged along). The prize money really mattered too. She told me how just going a couple of weeks without playing would put her off her game, so she’d played almost every day for 15 years. She knew her limitations too, and knew that she’d never enter the top ranks but could compete at a state level. She knew all the other players and who she could beat and who was better than her. It sounded like quite an undertaking, and honestly I’m sure it was a misery on her life but she also loved the validation from being really good at something.
I’m kinda hoping none of my kids really get obsessed with a sport - I can see how it would mess you up.
Yeah, I’ve always been hugely impressed with snooker players as you know how hard it is (compared to how easy they make it look, especially on TV with the foreshortening aspect).
In the building where I lived at university there was a full-size snooker table in the basement and (being reasonably good at pool at the time) I used to occasionally like to go and play snooker with a friend.
I was pretty atrocious, the frames all took over an hour and I think my biggest break ever was 12 (and like you, that was with a couple of real sitters)!
It’s one of the reasons I’ve always quite liked watching ‘pub sports’ like snooker and darts - you can actually have a go yourself quite easily, and see just how hard (and mentally draining) it must be to play so consistently at such a high level.
I was always in awe of Hendry - not as showy as the likes of O’Sullivan (who at his best was/is just genius-level, untouchable), but I found his consistency and his composure so impressive.
The killer is that when I played a few frames in college at ‘Mr Snookers’ there were many full sized tables and then they had two ‘matchplay’ tables in the corner, the ones the pros play on, where the pockets were so narrow there’s almost no room for error at all.
I don’t think I ever played on one of those. Crazy that they’re even tougher! It used to just seem impossible to me most of the time, even on a non-pro table.
This happened 50 years ago today:
An interesting side story to this is the Australian athlete in 2nd place.
Norman wore a badge on the podium in support of the Olympic Project for Human Rights (OPHR). After the final, Carlos and Smith had told Norman what they were planning to do during the ceremony. As journalist Martin Flanagan wrote; “They asked Norman if he believed in human rights. He said he did. They asked him if he believed in God. Norman, who came from a Salvation Army background, said he believed strongly in God. We knew that what we were going to do was far greater than any athletic feat. He said, ‘I’ll stand with you’.” Carlos said he expected to see fear in Norman’s eyes. He didn’t; “I saw love.”[On the way out to the medal ceremony, Norman saw the OPHR badge being worn by Paul Hoffman, a white member of the US Rowing Team, and asked him if he could wear it. It was Norman who suggested that Smith and Carlos share the black gloves used in their salute, after Carlos left his pair in the Olympic Village. This is the reason for Smith raising his right fist, while Carlos raised his left.
Norman was ostracised after the event for his support and not selected for the 1972 Olympics even though he’d easily qualified. Norman died in 2006 and Smith and Carlos travelled to Melbourne to serve as pall bearers and give eulogies at his funeral.
Talking of scoring celebrations, loved this one:
Spending most of the morning thinking terrible thoughts about some Brewers.
My Dodgers are gonna get killed.
This is weird. I don’t quite know what to think about some baseball without Mike Scioscia. He was a Dodgers catcher forever, and basically went from there to be Angels manager. 19 years! I don’t even remember another Angels manager. Gene Autry, mayhap?
Strawberry! Came out of Crenshaw - I hung out in Crenshaw as a kid. Saxy! Steve Sax, the Year He Couldn’t Hit. the Year He Couldn’t Throw, the Year He Couldn’t Run, the Year He Couldn’t Stop Talking!
cmon man. You left out the best bit!
World Series Game 1 tonight!
Who’s for who?
I have to go with my blood team, the Los Angeles Dodgers.
But it’s going to be a heck of a battle, and the Boston Red Sox are one of my favorite AL teams, and have had a fantastic year. I love the game even above a team, so all i can hope for is superb play and the umpires being spot on.
This is some insane ping-pong!