Something From The Weekend: James Pattinson; Easter's 'confession'; Conte doesn't fancy Alex

The Good, The Bad and The Odd
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The Independent Online

The Good: James Pattinson

Given how genes are said to determine sporting ability, many English cricket fans would be surprised by events at the Gabba this weekend. Debutant Aussie seamer James Pattinson ran through New Zealand, taking 5 for 27, setting up a nine-wicket win for the hosts. Impressive, certainly, but even more so given that he shares parents with a certain Darren Pattinson: famously plucked from nowhere for the Headingley Test in 2008, where he took two wickets and was never seen again. Perhaps these things are not pre-determined after all.

The Bad: Easter's 'confession'

A fine piece of evasion this weekend from rugby's Nick Easter, after the revelation he made the infamous "£35k down the toilet" dressing-room comment after the quarter-final defeat to France. "I don't specifically remember saying it but it's possible I did," said the veteran who might just have known better. The incident, of course, is anyone's fault but his. "The remark, assuming I said it, has been taken out of context by the player, and subsequently, by the response to it."

The Odd: Conte doesn't fancy Alex

When Juventus manager Antonio Conte was asked whether he was interested in Chelsea's want-away centre-back Alex, we were treated to a less banal denial than the usual. "Do I like Chelsea's Alex? No, in all honestly, I'm more attracted to women." Whether this means Conte finds Alex so sluggish and ponderous that he'd rather have a female defender, or if the coach just had something else on his mind, is not entirely clear.