Something From The Weekend: Brits win low-stakes games; Barry Ferguson's contrition; Bafana Bafana premature
The Good, The Bad and The Odd
Monday 10 October 2011
The Good: Brits win low-stakes games
In a sense, a weekend of sporting triumph for Brits in Japan. Jenson Button won the Japanese Grand Prix in Suzuka, his third win of the season, but had to celebrate alongside the new world champion Sebastian Vettel, 124 points ahead of him with four races left. In Tokyo, Andy Murray played brilliantly to beat Rafael Nadal 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 in the final of the Japan Open. Very impressive, but after heavy semi-final defeats to Nadal at the French Open, US Open and Wimbledon, it may have left him with a pang of frustration. To play one's best when it matters less: a very British approach. Perhaps Craig Levein should tell his Scottish players tomorrow's game in Spain is a friendly.
The Bad: Barry Ferguson's contrition
One man who will not be in Alicante tomorrow is Barry Ferguson. The man who has replaced Charlie Adam as Blackpool's own ex-Rangers midfield inventor is in international retirement after an unfortunate incident in 2009. Ferguson, dropped for his involvement in a drinking session, spent the match against Iceland holding up two fingers on his face to register his protest at the injustice. "I knew as soon as I did it, I was in deep trouble," he recalled this weekend. "I've looked at myself in the mirror a hundred times, 200 times and just wondered why I did it." Contrite, but he does not plan a return, even with the prospect of a play-off. "I think I made the right decision to go away from it and let Scotland rebuild."
The Odd: Bafana Bafana premature
To see a disallowed goal celebrated is entertaining. But to see a whole team dancing under the misapprehension that they had qualified for a tournament is to have that sensation multiplied. So it was with South Africa on Saturday. Bafana Bafana played out a 0-0 draw with Sierra Leone believing that it would send them to the African Nations Cup. In fact, the groups are decided by head-to-head, rather than goal difference, and so Niger went through instead. "I feel like I have failed" said coach Pitso Mosimane. In 1996 Manchester City played out a 2-2 draw believing it would keep them in the Premier League. It didn't, of course. But at least the players didn't dance on the Maine Road pitch afterwards.
Liam Neeson's Downton dreams
Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage
Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour
Latest in Sport
Everton vs Wolfsburg match report: Tim Howard hands Everton clear advantage
Think before you ink: Manchester United fan gets Sir Alex Ferguson tattoo - and will regret it for the rest of his life
Paul Scholes column: Rio Ferdinand and John Terry row was bad but they could have kept playing for England
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Bayern Munich vs Manchester City report: Jerome Boateng thrashes home winner against former team
- 1 Scottish independence: Learn from Quebec's mistakes and beware of promises. Vote Yes.
- 2 iOS 8 is full of shiny new features - but it's terrible news for app developers
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 4 Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
- 5 Cocaine and cannabis haul hidden in Vatican car seized by French police
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
£10000 - £20000 per annum: Randstad Education Plymouth: Randstad Education Ltd...
Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Promising volunteer Trustee op...
£30000 - £35000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...
£110 - £130 per hour: Randstad Education Reading: Psychology Teacher needed fo...