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Matthew Maguire

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Joined July 2009

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Best thing that could ever happen. Seems home series losses to India & South Africa plus consecutive away Ashes losses wasnt enough to force change but a HOME ashes series loss may just finally be the catalyst for sackings, especially with innings losses in ADEL and another likely one in MELB.

Its not that Ponting couldnt play on for another couple of years, likewise Katich, Hussey, North etc. They are quality (generally) and have given plenty over the years but what benefit is their continuation to Aussie cricket?

After March/April, the Ashes wont be contested for another 3 years and no World Cup for 4 years. Perfect time to rebuild with youth. Remove the contracts of every bloke over 30, regardless of form and seniority. They are not the future. There’s probably 8 spots available to be filled on that basis alone (Voges, Hopes, Lee, Hussey, Ponting, Haddin, Harris, Katich) let alone blokes like Tait still having contracts but only playing T20.

Sign up Khawaja, Hazlewood, Maddinson, Mitch Marsh, Peter George, Mitch Starc etc and play the blokes who have contracts but dont get picked – Tim Paine, Shaun Marsh, Callum Ferguson…

Shield cricket is still the best domestic comp in the world – why are we now ignoring the talent it continues to produce? Cant imagine it if we have held Ponting back til 28 before giving him a crack at Test level or played McGrath not at 23 but instead waited until he hit 30.

Hopefully, this entirely predictable Ashes outcome (draw or loss) will do the trick. It makes me sick to say it but I hope the humiliation continues…then again, with no confidence in the selectors, will they actually have the guts to wield the axe? Thankfully, Andrew Hilditch’s contract is up in April.

I am hoping only sheer embarrassment at hefty losses will force them into change because it is not even close to doom and gloom if they just give the fresh blood opportunity to prove themselves. There will be 25+ Tests before we travel to ENG in 2013 – plenty of time for a core group of 6-8 to have cemented themselves in the team and with a decent shot at regaining the Ashes. The talent is there, just play them.

Boxing Day Test brings all the big questions

These same journos and supposed experts said the same about the Athens Olympics, South Africa re the recent World Cup, Delhi re the upcoming Cth Games. Doomsday predictions of unfinished or even unbuilt facilities, tourists to be attacked given high crime rates etc. Never happens.

And with Brazil due to host the WC and the Olympics within 2 yrs of each other (racking my brain as i type…has any nation ever done that?) , I have no doubt they will put on fantastic editions of both events.

I agree with the sentiment of the article – many complaining and passing judgement appear to believe Brazil to be some sort of 3rd world nation. An unsophisticated outpost beset by the stereotypical corruption and governance issues in some parts of South & Central America. Very wrong.

Strong economy, growing stature in world affairs, incredible history and culture… at this stage im not entirely convinced Aus will qualify but regardless, I will be in Brazil in 2014 to experience what I’m sure will be a cracking WC with all the colour and vibrancy that Brazil has to offer. And, hopefully, samba instead of vuvuzela’s!

Nice piece Simon. Look forward to further articles as these four years roll on.

World Cup 2014: what's going on in Brazil?

why the high defensive line? it was the exact antithesis of what was needed and more to the point, polar opposite to every bloody match under Pim for 2 years now. got stretched wide through the middle and gave Ger acres of space behind the line to run at Schwarzer (and thank christ we had him – thought he butchered the Klose header but also saved it from being 7-0).

just strange of a manager to be so insistent, to the point of being stubborn, about his formations and defensive play, to then, on the bloody day of the world cup (!), start experimenting. crazy.

with all that said, 1-0 or 4-0, the Ger game was always going to be a loss so the equation remains the same – win two remaining games to progress or beat Ghana and draw with Serbia and hope Ger win against both. not all lost but Pim will need to get his head right and more to the point, rescue Aus confidence after such a hiding (and now without Cahill).

An unmitigated disaster for the Socceroos

why the high defensive line? it was the exact antithesis of what was needed and more to the point, polar opposite to every bloody match under Pim for 2 years now. got stretched wide through the middle and gave Ger acres of space behind the line to run at Schwarzer (and thank christ we had him – thought he butchered the Klose header but also saved it from being 7-0).

just strange of a manager to be so insistent, to the point of being stubborn, about his formations and defensive play, to then, on the bloody day of the world cup (!), start experimenting. crazy.

with all that said, 1-0 or 4-0, the Ger game was always going to be a loss so the equation remains the same – win two remaining games to progress or beat Ghana and draw with Serbia and hope Ger win against both. not all lost but Pim will need to get his head right and more to the point, rescue Aus confidence after such a hiding.

(cheers for the updates TT)

Socceroos vs Germany: As it happened analysis

Still expecting a Spain v Brazil final but like the chances of Holland, even without Arjen Robben. I’ll be in mourning for a month if the Poms win. My roughie – Mexico.

An intriguing World Cup with three clear favourites

Bowlers choosing to bowl over or around the wicket is not the equivalent of switch hitting, given a bowler must advise the umpire and in the turn the batsman, of his plan before the ball is delivered. The bowler should have a reasonable expectation of a fair contest between bat and ball and set a field accordingly.

Switch hitting is legal and Im not sure what the umps thought they would achieve on Tuesday in trying to stop Warner’s tactics. However, I hope before too long that a rule adjustment is made. It is not in the spirit of the game and if there is one sport left in the world where fair play should still exist, please let it be cricket.

Dave Warner is right, batting right or left-handed

lol…WA has an awful lot to offer but if your a sport nut, forget it. As an NRL fan, rugby league deprivation will set in within a few weeks unless you enjoy the Friday night double header starting at 2am. Gotta love commercial tv.

More bad broadcasting at the Winter Olympics

With great respect to the Roar moderator who edited the piece, I am in complete agreement Whiteline. As a sandgroper, I can promise you all those West Australia’s in the article were changed from my original Western Australia. I’ve seen it done elsewhere and, as you point out, it makes no sense and I would never write it in that way. Not to worry though…

More bad broadcasting at the Winter Olympics

jameswm:
Firstly, holding Australian players to account should be in the interest of all Oz cricket fans and most importantly, Cricket Australia. How the BCCI choose to deal with Harbhajan or anyone else is their business.

For what its worth though, Harbhajan was handed a 5 match (ODI) ban from the BCCI over and above the 10 IPL match ban handed down by the ICC for slapping/punching Sreesanth. India felt responsible for their player and took action. He has also incurred previous ICC and BCCI penalties which now have him potentially facing a life ban if he were to seriously transgress again.

If Andrew Symonds can be dropped for going fishing, I dont believe it unreasonable to suspend Watson for a Test match for publicly bringing the game into disrepute. Perhaps the issue is whether you believe that actually occured.

I’m sick to death of these incidents which, in themselves dont appear particularly serious but contribute to the decline in the sporting nature of the game. I just felt Watson let himself down and therefore, as a member of the national team, let Australian cricket fans down. I was embarrased by it. It showed utter disrespect to the opposition captain and was completely unnecessary.

15% fines (equivalent to about $1800) for a bloke on probably $300-400k a year does not send the msg I want delivered, not just to Watson but also his team-mates and youngsters embarking on a career in the game. If you have the honour of wearing the baggy green, treat it and the game that gives you a living with some respect.

If I launched a rant like that in the face of a colleague at my workplace and Im guessing yours too, I would likely lose my job. The cricket pitch is a workplace like any other. Gayle and the game deserved better. As for CA, what is the point of the Spirit of Cricket accord if they never enforce it? We have seen time and time again that we should hold ourselves to a higher standard than the ICC or some other cricketing nations choose to. We could set the standard in these off-field decisions in the same way we have led the world for so long on-field.

Watson gives CA perfect chance to get tough

15% fine of match payment….why am I not surprised at the leniency

Watson gives CA perfect chance to get tough

Didnt neglect it at all:

“The fatality rate of such a sailing attempt is also greater than either of the above pursuits. More people have died attempting a solo circumnavigation than in any other sporting challenge.”

Almost 2500 people have summitted Everest and as of 2007, it is believed 203 have died in the attempt. Thousands more (believed to be approximately 5000) have began the climb before aborting.

At last count 438 people have been to space, with 18 deaths.

Only 261 official circumnavigations have been successful, although you could probably add another 30-40 from recent Vendee Globe competitors that, in some lists, are not counted. Various figures are thrown about as to how many have died in the attempt (anything from 27 to 88) and an estimated 70% of those who set out on the journey are forced to abandon the trip after breakdown etc.

That is the very point I was making – that a solo circumnavigation is literally the Everest of sailing. Its death rate is higher, its failure rate well in excess of Everest or space. It is incredibly difficult. That is the point. Before Hilary’s successful summit, how many thought climbing Everest was ‘foolish?’

Because it is a mammoth task for anyone, young or old, to complete, we should somehow discourage any attempt?

And for what its worth, at least two teenagers have summitted Everest and who knows how many young locals have assisted foreign climbers but are not counted in the tally.

As for whether people think she is seeking fame and fortune or not (as if footballers and basketballers etc dont do that?), to pretend sailing is not a sport and that solo journeys are not the ultimate in the sport is ignorant beyond belief. If its not a team sport it doesnt count?

I have just been so frustrated at people sitting behind their computer screens, making judgements on somebody trying to do something significant. Seems like it is no different here though…

Jessica Watson should be applauded and supported

It has been almost a month since I have been back on here and, while no doubt nobody will see this comment at this late stage, I must post it.

I had absolutely NOT seen the Simon Barnes article you refer to and have only sought it out for comparison as I write this response to the above allegations.

If the article I have found on the net from that week is the one you refer to (and I have no way of knowing for certain if it is), you have go to be joking.

The article (mine…well, his as well i suppose), was written in the aftermath of the F1 revelations involving Renault.

In searching for his article on the net, I have found almost 65 other articles from that period that refer in some way to that partiular scandal. Hardly surprising – it was the story of the moment. Would you accuse Barnes of plagiarising those others?

The only genuine comparison I can see between the articles is the use of the phrase ‘…worst act of cheating in sporting history,’ or words to that effect. I can honestly say that was a phrase I heard used on Fox Sports (and no doubt elsewhere) and thats why in my piece it was written as;

“This week has seen the fallout of what many are describing as the worst act of cheating in sporting history.”

‘…what many are describing…’ – not me, the media (although I do agree with the sentiment)

The Barnes piece I am looking through now makes a mockery of comparing football diving with the F1 incident. I did the opposite. Then he goes on about spear tackling in Union. Similarities over.

In the week I posted the piece, F1 revelations hit the media, Bloodgate penalties were imposed, four Jamaican sprinters were disqualified for a mere 3 months when no international competition takes place during that period and Eduardo’s ban for diving was rescinded by a FIFA appeals board. I mainly included the latter as I am a Celtic fan and Eduardo’s dive cost Celtic a penalty.

I also talk about Americas Cup shenanigans (which I written an article about in the past), blood doping in the horse racing industry, the death of Fine Cotton and the swim suit saga that is destroying international swimming (something I have also written of in the last two months). None of these are covered in the Barnes article.

All topics were in the mainstream media in the week (even on the very day!) I posted the article. Others on this site probably also wrote about some of them.

But you wish to compare one paragraph of mine with a Simon Barnes piece? Give me a break. What I find most surprising is the site I found his article on – The Times.

I had to look twice… Times Of London? What the hell would I (or anyone for that matter), be reading the Times Of London for? I dont even read The West Australian over here!!

My only regret is my absence from this site for many weeks has not allowed me to defend myself before now and, so long after the event, I recognise no one will see this comment. Still, it must be done.

I do not think two, ten or a hundred people writing about the same event is some sort of conspiracy – nor do I believe two, ten or a hundred people having a similar point to make on an issue equates to plagiarism.

In such a serious issue as the F1 Renault scandal, who could genuinely have any other belief than the one I and, it appears, Simon Barnes and many others, held. It was a disgrace.

For what its worth, I deny the lot. Cheers for the slander.

It's been a vintage year for cheating

Thanks for those details Grumpy. Had tried but failed to find the riders who had won stages in all three tours when writing the piece. Gerrans joining just 8 others is a great effort.

Gerrans rides into history

The issue is the poor girl has done nothing to give herself such an advantage. No performance enhancing drugs are involved and it now appears she may well have been completely unaware she is a hermaphrodite. Her elite athletic ability is just her natural body and with no rules in place dictating how many times the level of testosterone a female can have over and above the average female, who is to say a hermaphrodite should be considered more male than female?

The media should just let Cassie Samenya be

Sadly, I get the impression most of the football public have already written the incident off. The flow of media personalities involved in the game who have brushed it aside as nothing significant and even questioned the ‘severity’ of the punishment means Judd has come out of this almost looking like a victim.

If it was anyone but the AFL’s love child attempting to eye gouge, there would have been genuine outrage and his explanation the following day, which Judd himself has now apologised for (sort of), would have been scoffed at as a bandly handled joke that cast Judd in an even poorer light.

Instead, the likes of Garry Lyon and Co jump to his defence. Three weeks for a recidivist act of such potential danger (and plain unneccessary) is light in my book. I doubt it will even be remembered beyond his return match in round 4 next year. A sad indictment of the double standards within the AFL.

Is Carlton's Saint Judd losing his Holiness

I think you have selectively read the article GG – Bolt’s run would be purely an exhibition event. It is not intended that Steffensen (who has run 200m in the past by the way) and certainly not Freeman, actually be competitive in a race against Bolt. It is about the moment, the image, the spectacle. You could line up the best 10 male sprinters on the planet and Bolt would still make a mockery of them – that’s kind of the point. For what its worth (and it not a criticism of the mods because I conceed the article was going too long), a paragraph suggesting the 300m record be attempted was removed from the post.

As for Tamsyn, she is never going to be an Olympic medalist but that does not preclude her from being considered world class. Or perhaps you would prefer your own opinion over that of Maria Mutola, who throughout her career repeatedly stated she felt Lewis was a significant threat and was proved right when Lewis rolled her in the indoor world champs. Before you claim the indoors are not the real deal (i agree) and Mutola was washed up (i disagree), the more important competitor in the race was Matye Martinez, bronze medalist at the Osaka world champs.

Samuels has enormous potential and will be a star yet I find it curious you are willing to state a youngster who has achieved little beyond a finals appearance on the world stage is world class while claiming Lewis, who has achieved much, is not. Its ok to be a Lewis hater, just dont let it blinker your views on athletics as a whole.

Benita looks likely to focus on the marathon – she’ll be fine.

Finally back to Bolt – I agree with ‘people want to see his 100m speed.’ Obviously. And they will have the opportunity to do just that in Perth and Melbourne should he accept the current offer put to his management team. An additional bridge run in Sydney would be purely exhibition (as stated in the article), a promotion for a great sport that requires a kick-along in this country.

Sorry you didnt like the article – I will attempt to better accomodate your tastes on my next attempt. 😉

Can we get Usain to Bolt across the Harbour Bridge?

Good start for Mowbray. Thank christ Strachan got the chop.
Had almost given up hope of seeing Celtic win away in Europe. Hopefully it is the first of many.
Now if we can only get McDonald to score for the Socceroos….

All hail Celtic after Champions League win

Mellouli was given a two year ban in 2007 after testing positive to a drug called Adderall, which is considered an amphetimine stimulant.

On appeal, the sentence was reduced to 18 months. Mellouli claimed he took Adderall, which is primarily used to treat ADHD, to assist him stay alert enough to study for his university exams. He did not have a prescription for the drug. Tunisian swimming officials knew of his failed test in 2006 but, given his explaination, chose not to suspend him.

When the World Anti Doping Assoc and FINA learned of this in ’07, they suspended him but backdated it to the time of the failed drug test, meaning he was able to compete and subsequently win gold at Beijing last year.

Hackett's record that suits the times

I should clarify – the women’s 1500m record was not set in a ‘Jaked,’ polyurethane suit. However, it is not an Olympic event and only a recent addition to world championship competition. Therefore there is, to date, almost no opportunity to compare times set with the new suits as opposed to the old.
I dont think this small anomoly diminishes Hackett’s achievement.

Hackett's record that suits the times

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