Today, 17 June is the centenary of when Australia and New Zealand played their first international matches against each other. 100 years today, the match took place at Carrisbrook, Dunedin, NZ, the most southern venue for an international match.
There is also a book on this (hint, hint) and an article in the Oz Guardian that replays one of the chapters (see end for details on book).
Gills v Rotherham on Sky lunchtime Saturday. Gillingham are fighting for their survival while Rotherham want the auto promotion place. Should be good to see how Connor plays against good opponents if we want to use him next season. Pity that Charlie won't play.
Last night's pitch was embarrassing, especially for a "world class stadium" as the ground announcer shouted over the extremely loud loudspeakers. From the first play down our right wing, the ball just hit the ground and did not bounce. There was a large patch of water down near our corner of the field too and taking corners was almost impossible. How much rain had been in Nottingham prior to this game? It says a lot about a stadium when the pitch can't drain after a small amount of rain. The game probably should not have gone ahead, but then the centre-circle was okay, which was where the fat controller was standing almost all night guessing his decisions and getting most wrong.
Much better than the magic. This came to me today....
A few words about Hartlepool's visit to Palace yesterday. As has been widely publicised, Palace contributed to the visiting fans' travel expenses, stumping up about half of their fares. Before the game, it became known that the wife of Pool manager, Graeme Lee, Gemma, has an awful brain tumour which needs treatment costing £5k/month, or £60k/annum. One of her friends had set up a crowdfunding page and asked for donations. So far, Palace and presumably Hartlepool fans have raised over £60k, with CPFC again chipping in. That's one positive to be taken from yesterday's game. But there is more.
4700 visiting fans descended on Selhurst, enjoyed themselves and as far as I am aware, behaved themselves. They certainly out-flagged the (they think they are) famous Holmesdale Fanatics. And they cheered their team to the rafters. As regards the Hartlepool team, they went 2 down after 20 minutes and could have sunk without trace, but they didn't - they kept playing football, and though they never really threatened, they were never out of it. Credit to them. On and off the pitch.
Modern Pentathlon is in a bind to find a new sport at the Olympics to replace show jumping after a German official punched a horse in Tokyo last year. This from "The Sports Examiner" ..
Well, the search for a new, fifth discipline has taken a turn to the absurd.
The PentathlonUnited group posted a tweet from Sportbeat managing editor James Toney (GBR) that included:
“Embattled @WorldPentathlon officials met with an athlete focus group to begin discussions on what sport should replace riding after they forced through controversial changes last year” with “potential examples” including
● Cycling (motor cross, mountain, electric) ● Triathlon hybrid: full transformation of the sport with fencing gone ● Drone racing ● Roller skating ● Obstacles: on the water/on land ● Steeplechase ● Traditional Gambian pillow fighting ● Hurdles running
Tokyo Olympic men’s champ Joe Choong (GBR) replied, “Forcing athletes to talk about a 5th discipline they don’t want is not consulting with them – AthCom should be representing athletes’ opinions, the majority of which want to keep riding!”
The UIPM Athletes Committee also reported its survey that showed 59.4% of those replying as dissatisfied with the UIPM’s “investment in the Riding Discipline” and only 27.4% satisfied.
Where is this headed? Michael Payne, the former IOC marketing director who is also a member of the fifth-discipline development panel, tweeted:
“Must have been fast asleep in working group when pillowfighting raised Normally on for good wind up & sending media off down blind allies for entertainment. Maybe drone controlled pillows navigating an obstacle course. IOC would have to accept for sheer bonkiness.”
Stay tuned; the “new” pentathlon is slated for trial events this summer! --
He's been taking a bit of a bashing of late, especially with Ilias away in Cameroon. Does he need some rest?
He was certainly not participating as much as we and the gaffer would like during the first half, that being in defence more than attack, chasing back, etc.
So, I wonder how many other saw the interesting situation in the first half when he went over to talk with the gaffer before a free kick. Then shortly after Thomas is stripped and ready to come on only for Willock to cross for Charlie's non-offside header. Then Thomas puts the trackie on and sits down. Weird, if I may say.
I do think he is being worn down by all the illegalities that he is suffering on the field. Not sure a rest would be the solution, but as someone said elsewhere, if Ilias was there, they cannot double-team both players. Perhaps this is the toughening up he requires, like what Eze and Adel suffered in their times here when they were dominating. It is how they react to such attention that defines them as a top player.
So, rest him on Saturday for at least some of the game, bringing him on late or keep him going as we cannot afford to have him off the pitch?
This was perhaps the best atmosphere created by home support, especially the north stand, that I have seen throughout England. We did our best, but they were relentless. Imagine if we could generate a whole end to do that as well. Mind you, the southern end were no slouches as well. I have only seen it like this in a few other places but not this side of the world.
Hope all who took in the sights of Blackpool got back ok.