Hair today, gone tomorrow – because they're worth it

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Marc Lièvremont's 'tache has lit up the World Cup, prompting Robin Scott-Elliot to unfurl a top 10 of hirsute sporting errors

1. Marc Lièvremont

The French coach has come to resemble D'Artagnan during this tournament, albeit a D'Artagnan wearied by his fruitless attempts to control his rowdy musketeers. But for all the troubles he carries, the classic pencil tache lends him an impressive air of louche sangfroid

2. WG Grace

The grandaddy of hirsute sportsmen. The daunting beard only added to the impression that he was the damn man and would do whatever he damn well pleased. He also had an eye for a quick pound and it was rumoured that during the close season he would rent out his ample whiskers for small mammals to hibernate in.

3. Bill Buckner

He may have gone down in US sporting history as baseball's biggest loser but just look at the tache. Buckner let the ball slip through his legs in the decisive moment of the 1986 World Series to gift victory to the New York Mets at the Red Sox's expense. But he deserves credit for a facial arrangement that would make Magnum PI question his masculinity.

4. Dan Cole

The sole success of England's World Cup campaign was Cole's beard. A typical no-frills forward's growth; don't shave, beard grows. What we actually have here is an admirable throwback to Henry VIII, only with less wives, I hope

5. Romania 1998

How did Dan Petrescu and his team-mates pass the time in camp during the 1998 World Cup finals? By making silly bets. The result of qualifying for the knockout stage was the entire squad decided to dye their hair blonde, apart from their goalkeeper, who was excused on the grounds he didn't have any hair to dye.

6. Australia cricketers

There is a rich tradition in Australia –I suppose they have to have one – of hairy cricketers. The Chappell brothers and Dennis Lillee set a high standard in the 1970s and Merv Hughes and David Boon, who was more moustache than man, have kept the flame burning, although not too closely as tache fires are a real worry Down Under.

7. Graham Gooch and Shane Warne

If you are losing your own hair take someone else's. There are plenty of sportsmen who have taken this route, but these two were among the first. Gooch scored a 100 in his first game post hair transplant, an achievement that has become known as a reverse Samson.

8. Bobby Mihailov

Again more of a tale of hair that wasn't, but demands inclusion for being the worst wig in sporting history and perhaps beyond. If Donald Trump and Paul Daniels were ever to have sported hairpieces, only they might, ahem, trump the follicly challenged Bulgarian and briefly Reading No 1

9. Phillips Idowu

The triple jumper would win best in paddock at any Games and actually it would add a whole new level of excitement to the event were judges to mark the competitors' look and then multiply that by the distance leapt. It would certainly improve chances of British gold next year.

10. Jimmy Hill

The man who broke down the doors to the bank for British footballers had an extraordinary career in and around the game and through much of the later stages of it he was accompanied by the neatest, best behaved goatee you could wish to see.

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Oliver
filmTV chef Jamie Oliver turned down role in The Hobbit
News
The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
tvReview: Top Gear team flee Patagonia as Christmas special reaches its climax in the style of Butch and Sundance
News
people
Sport
Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
film
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
Arts and Entertainment
Tracy Emin's 1998 piece 'My Bed' on display at Christie's
artOne expert claims she did not
News
Ernesto Che Guevara and Fidel Castro, right, met at Havana Golf Club in 1962 to mock the game
newsFidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
News
Hackers revealed Oscar-winning actress Lawrence was paid less than her male co-stars in American Hustle
people
Arts and Entertainment
Clueless? Locked-door mysteries are the ultimate manifestation of the cerebral detective story
booksAs a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Sport
Robin van Persie is blocked by Hugo Lloris
footballTottenham vs Manchester United match report
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Business Manager

£32000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Business Manager is required ...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager

£45000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Panel & Cabinet Wireman

£20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Panel Wireman required for small electro...

Recruitment Genius: Electronics Test Engineer

£25000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An SME based in East Cheshire, ...

Day In a Page

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?