Outside Edge (29/08/10)

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Thumbs up to the Japan Sumo Association for supplying all 51 of their sumo "stables" with iPads so that the wrestlers can phone and text without their fat fingers pressing three buttons at once. It's not all about digital digits, though, as the authorities want to keep better tabs on their charges following revelations about gambling and consorting with gangsters. Meanwhile an Italian TV show called Quelli Che Il Calcio ("That's what football is about") has been used by the Mafia to send coded text messages to prisoners via the ticker service along the bottom of the screen, according to prosecutor Vincenzo Macri. Rumours that a British version will allow players to text their mistresses are unfounded.


Seconds it took Melissa Thompson of Salford to text the 160-character message 'The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human'. The previous world record was 35.54sec.

Slippery customers of the week

Organisers of the annual wild pig-wrestling competition at Chouteau County Fair in Montana were left scratching their heads after they only managed to catch one boar for the occasion instead of the usual 30 hogs. So they couldn't bring the bacon from home and the pigs might flee, but in Kansas City it's the fish that are flying. Kayaking enthusiast Brad Pennington had to withdraw from the Missouri River 340 endurance race after he was struck on the head by a flying 30-pound Asian silver carp. Organiser Tracy Hill said he had been hit several times and had taken to wearing a construction hat. At least he wasn't sunk without Trace.

Good week for

Garret Doherty and Rachel Butterfield, winners of the first UK Backward Running Championships in Manchester, covering one mile in 7min 30sec and 12min 40sec respectively... Great Britain croquet team, won the World Team Championships in Roehampton... and Richard Munday, Portsmouth fireman is first to complete Three Peaks Challenge (Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon) carrying a 50lb backpack – after breaking his foot halfway.

Bad week for

Lewis Hamilton, Formula One driver fined Aus$500 (£288) for "behaving like a hoon", performing car stunts for fans outside the Albert Park racing circuit in Melbourne... The World Bikini Sports League, fined $25,000 for "selling unregistered securities and misleading investors"... and Joel Clinton, Hull KR prop missed a game with an ear infection after doctors found Blu-Tack in his ear that had been there for several years.

Sizzling sex scenes of the week

If you're looking to do something different this weekend, you could try the World Bog-Snorkelling Championships in Llanwrtyd Wells, Powys, or there's "football in the river" at Bourton-on-the-Water in the Cotswolds. For those who prefer their activity to be more testosterone-fuelled, how about World Testicle Cooking Championship in Sumadija, Serbia. The motto goes "The Scots have Scotch, the Swiss have cheese, and we Serbs have balls". The dishes range from elk to shark, and are renowned for their aphrodisiac qualities. These culinary efforts are judged by female vets, and their potency is then tested in a place called the Balls Cup Camp. What happens to the losers is more of a worry.