Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Mitchell could overshadow Khan’s U.S. debut


WBA Light-welterweight champion Amir Khan makes his U.S. debut on Saturday when he faces Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi in the American’s hometown of New York but perhaps the better fight involving a British fighter on the night will be occurring some 3,000 miles away.

Undefeated lightweight Kevin Mitchell faces Australian Michael Katsidis in what could be one of the fights of the year. The last time the Australian was in Britain three years ago he stopped local Graham Earl in five rounds after one of the most punishing rounds of boxing I have seen in a long time.

The Aussie loves a tear-up and only comes forward to attack but he has been through a number of wars recently and might just be a bit battle-worn. After beating Earl he lost tough fights against Joel Casamayor and Juan Diaz in the States before a sluggish win over Vicente Escobedo in September.

For that reason I fancy Mitchell to prevail at London’s Upton Park, the home of his beloved soccer team West Ham United.

from Olympics Notebook: Vancouver 2010:

Williams wins gold, will Brits stop moaning about the Games now?

OLYMPICS-SKELETONAmy Williams became Britain's first Winter Olympics gold medallist in an individual event for 30 years when she scored a commanding victory in the skeleton on Friday.

The 27-year-old with the curly-wurly hairstyle won by over half a second to emulate the gold won by Robin Cousins in the men's skating in 1980.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

British Olympic soccer team becomes right royal farce

There has not been one since 1960, the Scottish don’t want its return, neither do the Welsh, nor the Northern Irish and yet the prospect of a British soccer team at the 2012 London Olympics remains.

The English Football Association is refusing to relinquish an idea that nobody else seems to care about.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Would a unified Britain have won more than one World Cup?

Resistance to plans for a unified British soccer team for the 2012 London Olympics means the idea may well be a one-off, if it gets off the ground at all.

The four home nations are wary of setting precedents that could harm their independent status, despite their lack of success as separate entities.