Outside Edge (01/08/10)

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The Independent Online

Muslim clerics have finally come out and said what we've known all along: Manchester United are an evil club. In Malaysia, mufti Nooh Gadot has stated that the club crest with its red devil must not be worn since it will "erode our belief in Islam", and replica shirts must be rejected as gifts – which will not help United's lucrative Asian market. He also outlawed the kits of Brazil and Barcelona as they show crosses. In Chile, proof that the game is going to the dark side after Jose Pedroso of the local Rangers tried to strangle the referee, Marcelo Miranda. Mind you, Miranda had just asked the opposition, Desportes Concepcion, to retake a penalty three times. How would Sir Alex have reacted?

283

Runs scored by Seb Coe (no relation) for Sampford Arundel in chasing a target of 332 to beat Feltham Garrison by one wicket in Somerset. In a last-wicket stand of 107 with their non-cricketing local landlord he hit... 107. The running king.

Pie lovers of the week

The countdown to a new NFL season begins, but for rookie Terrence Cody it's hard going already. Joining up with the Baltimore Ravens, the 350lb defensive tackle has failed his conditioning test twice. This consists of running 25 yards, turning round, running back again, resting for 70 seconds, then repeating the exercise twice. That's 150 yards. But his fans won't be as disappointed as their baseball brethren at the Florida Marlins, where the National League Rookie of the Year Chris Coghlan tore the meniscus in his left knee when he threw a pie in the face of team-mate Wes Helms. Marlins pitcher Ricky Nolasco had the right idea when he said: "It's tough to swallow." His team need a slice of luck.

Good week for

Vanessa Mae, virtuoso violinist is sanctioned by the Thailand Olympic Committee to become the country's first Winter Olympian – in downhill skiing... Louis Oosthuizen, South African celebrated victory in The Open by buying a new tractor... and John Isner and Nicolas Mahut, whose marathon Wimbledon match is immortalised in a Durex advert ("Take pleasure coming second").

Bad week for

Frank Lampard, whose limited-edition series of 5,000 gold-plated iPods are to be "melted down" and recast as the cartoon character Hello Kitty after poor sales... bullfighting, banned in Catalonia, the first region of mainland Spain to do so... and Shamrock Rovers, Irish footballers have to play their Europa Cup third qualifying round against Juventus in Modena instead of Torino's Stadio Olimpico because fellow Dubliners U2 are playing a concert there.

Beer matters of the week

Flipping heck. Dean Gould of Felixstowe has just chalked up another world record: he flipped 800 beer mats in just 41 seconds at the Wiremill in Lingfield, Surrey. Does he just spend too much time in the pub? Maybe, but he holds a vast array of other proud records, such as putting onions in your mouth (16), licking and sticking stamps (84 in two minutes) and eating baked beans with a cocktail stick (54 in one minute). But sadly, another British eccentricity, the 12-hour Lawn Mower Endurance Race at Haslemere, Sussex – which was won in past years by Stirling Moss and Derek Bell – has been cancelled. Organisers (not the Rotary Club) are blaming the recession. The cuts are starting to be felt.

a.tong@independent.co.uk

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