JUDGEMENTS; Winners and losers of the last seven days

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The Independent Online

Jack Rowell

Who got one back on his media tormentors by shocking them with the selection of schoolboy Paul Sampson for the England rugby union squad.

Eric Cantona

Who proved he had made the transition from warmonger to peacemaker in twelve very uneasy months by keeping his head when all around had lost theirs.

Shaun Edwards

Who extended his record of appearing in all of Wigan's consecutive Challenge Cup wins to 43.

Brian Lara

Who returned to his natural home - the crease - with a blissful 77 in his first first-class innings for six months in Trinidad


Alex Higgins

Whose decline in the snooker world he once dominated reached its nadir when he failed to qualify for the final stages of any professional tournament this season.

Newcastle United

Who kept everyone in the dark about the Faustino Asprilla transfer, and anyway could not have picked a more inhospitable time to show off their home than the bleakest of midwinter days.

Match Of The Day viewers

Who were told that Ryan Giggs had sparkled for Manchester United, but because of the selection of the highlights had to take it on trust.


Who thought they were going to have to play bottom-of-the-table Newcastle in the Cup, but will now have to face Newcastle Superstars because the postponement means many of their new signings will be available.