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The Independent Online

If you think China has gone too far in coaching its kids to become world-beaters with this week's revelation of baby-racing in Beijing, news comes in that the USA will be sending the first-ever children's sky-diving team to the UK next year for the Bodyflight World Challenge. "Team Future" consists of eight-year-old Justin Tinnucci and his sister Kayla, 11. They won't actually be jumping out of planes above Bedfordshire – you can't do that until you are 18 – but hovering in a wind-tunnel instead. Phew, you sigh. But just to add that the "wind" reaches speeds of 180mph and the tunnel is only 16.5ft in diameter. More Space Station than PlayStation – just don't bring the vodka jelly.

$35m

The five-year contract that wide receiver Plaxico Burress, whose touchdown won last season's Super Bowl for the Giants, stands to lose after accidentally shooting himself in the leg in a New York nightclub. He faces three and a half years in jail, too. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot...

Wizard idea of the week

The Americans do some whacky things but sometimes they're just annoying. Another idea for kids that won't get off the ground is the craze of muggle quidditch, the Harry Potter offshoot that is being played by the finest minds on more than 150 US college campuses. It should be said that although players run around with broomsticks between their legs, they don't actually fly – but they can employ a sweeper system or play on the wing. A seasonal flightless pursuit is Cincinnati's turkey bowling, where the bowling ball is replaced by a frozen bird. You can watch George Bush doing it on YouTube. That's him in the shrink-wrap.

Good week for...

Eri Yoshida, Japan's first female professional baseballer, signs for Kobe 9 Cruise aged 16... Mark Lawrenson and Graham Bell, football pundit and Ski Sunday presenter, are new entries in 'Who's Who'... Adil Rashid, 20-year-old leg-spinner is called up to England's Performance Squad in India... and basketball, one of the winners in British Olympic funding for 2012.

Bad week for...

O J Simpson, legendary running back, sentenced to up to 33 years in jail after bungled armed robbery... David Hoy, father of triple Olympic gold-medallist Chris, admits he didn't teach his son to ride a bike... Lee Fawcett, Paralympic fencer in Beijing, admits fiddling almost £5,000 in benefits while selling cars to the disabled... and fencing and table tennis, two sports that missed out on significant BOA funding for the London Games.

Fancy footwork of the week

What would the old players think of Manchester United's new dressing-room video screens reminding the stars of their "hair-care" appointments (as opposed to their hair-dryer sessions with the manager) and telling them who will be running their bath? Nat Lofthouse and Co would tear their Brylcreemed hair out, but maybe not Sir Stanley Matthews, whose boots from the 1953 FA Cup final are going on display in Preston's National Football Museum. They are "very thin and almost slipper-like" and Matthews probably had them purpose-made after seeing Brazilians using them at the 1950 World Cup. You had to get a new pair every few games. Today's WAGs would be very proud.

s.redfern@independent.co.uk

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