The Reuters global sports blog
The fallout from England’s crushing first-test defeat by Pakistan has led many pundits to call for Monty Panesar to play as a second spinner in next week’s second test, despite the fact it was the batsmen and not the bowlers who failed to turn up for the world’s top-ranked test side.
Number 11 Panesar may have performed heroics with the bat in Cardiff to save the first Ashes test in 2009 but the Pakistan bowlers will hardly be quaking in their boots. Including Panesar would seemingly mean dropping seamer Chris Tremlett, who did not get a wicket in Dubai but still bowled decently. England getting Pakistan down to 289-8 having only scored 192 first up themselves was a good effort from the England attack.
There has been talk of Ravi Bopara coming in instead to bolster the batting and bowling but the all-rounder has always struggled to impose himself on tests when the pressure is on. Being one down in a three-test series in unfamiliar surroundings really is pressure. Yes the injured Tim Bresnan brought runs down the order but so do Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann. Dropping Tremlett for Bopara would be a risky move.
While rising to number one in the world, England have recovered from sudden setbacks well, such as the defeat in Perth on their way to winning the Ashes in Australia at the turn of 2010/11.
By Martyn Herman
Andy Roddick on Friday insisted that tennis players must adopt “one voice” to push through changes to the ATP Tour but that may not be as easy as it seems despite the general feeling of solidarity.
Pity Brad Drewett, the new chief executive of the men’s Tour, who has the job of trying to keep everyone happy, grand slam champions, journeymen, tournament organisers, sponsors and TV.
Over here in Europe, interest in NFL has grown markedly this year if Twitter trends are taken into account. Maybe the annual game in Wembley has boosted UK interest along with better live coverage on satellite TV but the players themselves deserve credit.
Argentina’s soccer hooligans appear to warm up for a new championship just like their teams with Independiente’s ‘barrabravas’ threatening trouble at an off-season friendly after being told by the club’s new administration “there is no cash”.
The impoverished giants from Avellaneda, record seven-times South American champions, voted in new president Javier Cantero last month who at once confronted the hardcore fans and told them they would get no funds.
The clock said 68 minutes, and no one at the Emirates Stadium in north London was looking at the action on the pitch as the fourth official held aloft his lit-up board to signal the re-introduction of Thierry Henry to English football.
Ten minutes later and he’d scored the game’s eventual winner. Comebacks don’t get this good this often.
In the space of a year, the 24-year-old has gone from expensive bench warmer to first-choice leader of the line at the world’s richest club by revenue, and won over a skeptical coach.
The trouble with putting together a top 10 list of the year’s biggest sports stories is that one person”s number one is another person”s 10.
For those of us lucky enough to spend our time chronicling these events the period before New Year is generally one of reflection where we, like every other sports fan, take stock of what we have seen.
Yes World, European and Spanish champions Barca have been brilliant and in time we may say they were the greatest ever club side to play the game.
The inconsistent use of the Decision Review System (DRS) has put the International Cricket Council (ICC) in the firing line once again, strengthening the already popular notion that the governing body is helpless against the wishes of its most influential member board – India.
As the rest of the cricketing world went up in unison in a huge appeal, like a stern umpire, India once again shook its head and refused to budge on the use of technology in the game.
You’re Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy, it’s the final game of the regular season against the Detroit Lions, and you’ve got a dilemma: play your strongest team, a winning combination, or rest your stars fearing serious injuries to any of them.
What do you do? McCarthy said on Monday he wants veteran left tackle Chad Clifton to play the game, he wants Clifton’s experience for the playoffs so naturally he needs a run out against the Lions. Easy.