The sporting week ahead (12/08/12)

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The Independent Online


The last day of the final golf major is always laced with slight sadness, a staging post for late summer. But our comfortable calendar is about to be shaken up. What will happen in 2016, when golf is in the Olympics? Will the USPGA be moved? All will be changed utterly.


So that's it. No more morning Olympic fix; no more red button. The country will no doubt experience a collective mass withdrawal as we struggle with the post-Olympics sporting landscape. Anyone for Fleetwood v Nottingham Forest in the Capital One Cup?


We are really going to have to get used to this. Watch out for Fergie's jovial face when Manchester United go to Aberdeen for a friendly. Or maybe hang on to summer at Edgbaston, where England Lions entertain England A.


Even in the lean times, an England friendly against Italy in Switzerland would be on the margins; this week it seems even more unnecessary. Be on your best behaviour lads, or everyone will be holding their noses.


Only victory over South Africa in the final Test at Lord's will preserve England's No 1 status in the world. It could be the perfect moment for the cricketers to step up to the mark in this extraordinary summer.


If you are pining for more athletics, help is at hand: it's the Diamond League meeting in Stockholm, with Felix Sanchez, Sally Pearson and Sanya Richards-Ross among those scheduled to appear. If you are not pining at all, it's Cardiff v Huddersfield in the Championship.


The drums will be rolling on Sky. There's no avoiding football now. And what a super soaraway Saturday it promises to be, with Steve Clarke's West Bromwich Albion up against his old boys Liverpool under their new boss Brendan Rodgers. Newcastle v Spurs also looks enticing. It's almost like it's never been away.