Outside Edge (27/06/10)
Sunday 27 June 2010
Four Britons are on course to reach Cape Town this week after cycling 6,000 miles from Cairo to watch the World Cup. They might have crossed paths with Andrew Grady, who has hitchhiked to South Africa from London because flights were so expensive. But they could have taken an easier route. South African airline Kulula, who described themselves as "the unofficial national carrier of the you-know-what", were threatened with legal action by Fifa's marketing police so they apologised and offered the Fifa president Sepp Blatter free travel all over Africa. A couple from Cape Town have changed their dog's name to "Sepp Blatter" and blagged lots of flights. That's taking the lead.
Hours and minutes that German Daniel Peetz ironed – flat out – to set a world record in Rheinberg. But Brits still hold the record for underwater ironing after a challenge in the Florida Keys was postponed due to storms. So there.
Grudge match of the week
This World Cup has shown that you need a good defence, with all the Fifa writs flying around. France didn't have one but the malaise goes back a long way. David Ginola finally snapped this week and said he would sue Gérard Houllier after the former France manager yet again brought up on TV Ginola's poorly directed cross which allowed Bulgaria to score and qualify for USA 94 instead of the French. And a Chinese lawyer is going through the courts in Sichuan in an attempt to order the national team to qualify for the next World Cup. Chen Fengfeng believes that because the state pays their wages, they have a legal duty to take part in all major tournaments. This one could go to penalties.
Good week for
Charlene Wittstock, former South African Olympic swimmer is engaged to marry Prince Albert II of Monaco... Shahid Afridi, Pakistan cricketer, hit his 272nd six in One-Day Internationals, overtaking Sri Lankan Sanath Jayasuriya's record... and Sachin Tendulkar, Indian batsman, is given the honorary rank of group captain by the Indian Air Force.
Bad week for
Sir Steven Redgrave, former Olympic rower breaks two ribs, a wrist and a cheekbone after suffering a puncture 300 miles from the end of a 3,000-mile charity bike race in the US... BP, withdraws its range of World Cup face paints after four children fall ill in Lightwater, Surrey... and Gary Neville, footballer's proposed "Tellytubby" eco-friendly home in Harwood, Bolton is refused planning permission by the town council.
Dirty tactics of the week
Scottish football fans haven't had much to cheer about lately – possibly until around 5pm today – but after failing to qualify for the World Cup, they can at least look forward to this weekend's Swamp Soccer World Cup at Strachur in Argyll featuring 64 teams from around the world, among them Real Mudrid and Cowdungbeath. The French may not be very good at football any more but they might do well here; mud-slinging is a speciality. As is digging a big hole for themselves, so they could have tried the World Worm-Charming Championships in Willaston, Cheshire yesterday. The best method is to entice them up with vibrating forks; in fact you're not allowed to dig them up. Such soil sports.
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