US Open moments, Calcio Storico brawlers and losing to Mr Freeze
This week’s roundup also features Pakistan’s cricketing highs and lows, a vertigo-inducing mountain descent and a piece of overzealous goalkeeping
1) An Atlanta Braves fan takes on Mr Freeze with a massive headstart, tries his hand at hubris, falls over.
2) It was the Calcio Storico semi-finals last weekend and the match between La Santa Croce Azzurri and Santo Spirito Bianchi featured just the 40-man brawl and involvement of riot police after a player punched a referee. Of course, given the nature of the sport, which is modelled on a primitive form of football from the 16th century, it’s not always easy to distinguish between a brawl and run-of-play action.
3) Pakistan upset the odds to reach the ICC Champions Trophy final for the first time. It’s become a bit of a cliche to describe them as mercurial or unpredictable, but nonetheless they remain a team that could go either way, as their past record in finals demonstrates. In 1992, inspired by Wasim Akram’s unplayable bowling, they seized the trophy from England’s grasp; and in 2009 Shahid Afridi led the charge to deliver victory on English soil in the World T20 final against Sri Lanka. Will that kind of Pakistan turn up on Sunday, or this one, the talented side that flopped so miserably at the final hurdle against Australia in the 1999 World Cup final, bowled out for 132 and thrashed by eight wickets.
4) The US Open gets underway on Thursday. Get in the mood for it with a look back at Rory McIlroy’s tournament record 16-under-par 268 in 2011, and happier times for an emotional Tiger Woods as he drains a 12-foot birdie putt to force a play-off against Rocco Mediate, which Woods would go on to win. And, further back, Jack Nicklaus’s first major title, when he saw off Arnold Palmer in a famous play-off to win at Oakmont in 1962.
5) How do you scamper down 999 steps on the side of a 45-degree incline mountainside in under three minutes? Let Calen Chan show you, with this vertigo-inducing up-close view of his assault on the Skyladder Parkour course at Tianmen Mountain in China.
Highlights from last week’s blog
1) More awe-inspiring, vertigo-inducing free-climbing antics, as 55-year-old French “spiderman” Alain Robert scales the Melia Barcelona Sky Hotel without a harness.
2) The Birmingham goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger paying her own tribute to 1982 World Cup villain Toni Schumacher against Chelsea in the Women’s Super League 1 Spring Series.
3) Aussie rules action, as Andrew Boston scores from an impossible angle in the NEAFL versus TSL representative game, and an amazing mark by Collingwood’s Jeremy Howe last Monday against Melbourne. The Melbourne player whose shoulder he leaps on is 194cm tall.
4) With a punch this powerful, Syria goalkeeper Ibrahim Alma could take up a second career as a boxer.
5) Game 4 of the NBA Finals. LeBron James with the alley-oop off the backboard to himself.
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