Something From The Weekend: Rahul Dravid; Fan trouble in Mexico; Voeckler no match for horse

The Good, The Bad and The Odd
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The Independent Online

The Good: Rahul Dravid

At 5.03 yesterday evening, more than a whole day of individual excellence and resistance was ended, Rahul Dravid falling to Graeme Swann. Before then, he had batted all day, carrying his bat to score a magnificent unbeaten 146. He batted with such professionalism, commitment and application, it was as if he were taking responsibility for the failures of his colleagues all series. Four Tests' worth of abject catching, pointless bowling and cowardly batting was atoned for yesterday. His batting was a riposte to the failings of Suresh Raina, R P Singh, Gautam Gambhir and the rest of them. The innings will, probably, join his other masterpieces that ended in failure. But as a lesson to his team-mates, it was perfect.

The Bad: Fan trouble in Mexico

England may well lead the world in cricket now, but in other areas has surrendered supremacy. Football hooliganism, so long "the English disease", is now led by those from abroad. On Saturday, a Mexican game between Santos Laguna and Monarcas Morelia was abandoned because of a gun battle outside the ground. Players hid in the dressing room, fans hid beneath their seats and the game will have to be replayed. Gun violence is endemic in Mexico and Santos chairman Alejandro Irarragorri bemoaned the situation. "In the Santos club, we feel bad for the time in which we are living," he announced on the pitch. "It is evident that the game will be suspended. We are sorry for Morelia, the referees, and those who are visiting us from elsewhere."

The Odd: Voeckler no match for horse

Has Thomas Voeckler grown bored of leading the field? Despite his success this year, during which he wore the yellow jersey, he has taken to a very different category of racing. Last week Voeckler followed in the footsteps of Jesse Owens and competed against a horse, in an exhibition at Les Sables-d'Olonne. Othello Bourbon, ridden by Eric Raffin, and Voeckler raced on a 380-metre straight, in front of a crowd of 8,000. The combination of man and machine triumphed in the first contest, but the animal had more stamina and Voeckler lost 2-1. Maybe he should step back down to men.