Ronaldo to go?

Yeah, ever since the world cup where the sissy git Christian Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney clashed, the talk was how could these two work together ever again. They have and managed to fashion on heck of a partnership.

So the latest reports out of Spain and Britian overnight suggest that there has been a deal made between Manchester United and Real Madrid at the end of the season.

This from the UK tabloid The Sun

REAL MADRID claim to have struck a sensational secret agreement to buy Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
Bernabeu director Pedro Trapote has alleged that the transfer of the European Footballer of the Year is already agreed but clauses in the arrangement prevent the news being made official.

Spanish daily El Mundo reported Trapote told a confidante of the deal after Real’s 2-0 defeat against Barcelona last weekend.

The newspaper claimed Ronaldo agreed to stay at United this season only provided they let him go next summer.

Trapote was reported as saying to a friend: “If you are asking me what we are going to do now then I would tell you that we have already signed the best player for the summer.”

The friend replied: “Are you talking about Cristiano?”

Trapote responded: “The best of the best. It is Cristiano, there is no other.

He may be the best, only problem is he’s a git and I can’t stand the bugger, so if he’s off fantastic. I may never forgive Wayne Rooney for leaving Everton, but to me he’s a better all round player, just last week he stole the ball from his own goal box back in defence. And he doesn’t cry and writhe around in absolute agony every time someone touches him (or looks at him). BTW he should have been carded for mockery of the ref a couple of weeks back, that sort of idol worship/leniency bugs the bejesus out of me.

Ronaldo cry

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Auckland Reactor – the best ever?

Unlike many other sports pages in New Zealand, this blog is going to celebrate the noble and historical sport of Harness Racing in New Zealand. We have a rich and world beating history in this sport, with names like Cardigan Bay and Christian Cullen known not only in New Zealand households, but in the global Harness Racing community.

It’s well and truly time to add to the long list of champion horses in New Zealand that of Auckland Reactor. As a 4 year old (very young for an Open Class horse) he is unbeaten in 15 races, from his age group peers through to the very best in the country, culminating in the New Zealand Free For All race on the second day of the New Zealand Cup Carnival at Addington Raceway.

Here is that race. Remember although unbeaten in 13 races to this point, he was still only a 4 year old, and he’s racing against the best in the country including the newly crowned New Zealand Cup winner (from the previous Tuesday) Changeover. Even if you don’t really get horse racing, think of a young Jonah Lomu who despite the hype still needed to prove himself, and then came that storming run in which he ran right over the last English defender to seal his place in history, this is the harness racing equivalent to that moment. Enjoy Auckland Reactor in full flight against the best Cup Class horses in the country;


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he may be good, but he is a twat

Christian Ronaldo is not a model for any aspiring footballer or for any parent to put up as a model for kids to follow. He may be fleet footed, he may have a killer free kick, he may be astoundingly skilful on the ball, but he’s a supreme twat and one hell of a cry baby.

He’s a classic example of a guy who thinks he’s above the law when it comes to football, and god forbid if anyone even taps his ankles, there’s an Oscar performance on the cards.

This morning’s game Manchester United vs Manchester City was a prime example of his best and worst. He showed sublime skill and fierce combative moves, he also showed that he was a sarcastic SOB who really thinks he’s better than any ref, never does anything wrong and wouldn’t hurt a fly. Problem is that his first tackle was a shocking hack from behind – he wasn’t going to let the player get away, Yellow Card. He was bloody luck not to have been sent off however as the ironic clap he gave the ref is seen as dissent and is punishable by a second yellow card and thus automatic red card.

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Bracewell…

I was loathed to start this blog with a classic Kiwi moan, but watching the Kiwi cricketers capitulate on what is by all accounts a good batting surface (just ask the inexperienced new Aussie wicket keeper), it’s pretty dammed obvious that the out going New Zealand cricket coach John Bracewell should be taking a very long holiday away from New Zealand after this test.

Quite simply we are embarrassing, and this is coming from someone who is a staunch defender of NZ Cricket (the pool of players we have to choose from always means we have to punch well above our weight).  I like the team we have, but not the order, but for whatever reason these guys have been taught the skill of surrendering wickets too bloody easy.

To say the papers weren’t too kind over the weekend was an understatement, and that was when the team was still showing some pride.  Take for instance Michael Donaldson’s comments in the Sunday Star Times

“I’ll leave the niceties to others, but for me John Bracewell is the man who has presided over New Zealand’s swan dive towards the empty swimming pool which is the bottom of cricket’s test world rankings.”

He’s not wrong, when Bracewell took over the squad we were third in the world, that’s right third!!! Now we are to be 8th, and that’s only just above Bangladesh. I disagree with Donaldson’s assumption that One Day Cricket will be meaningless soon, I just can’t see that happening, so to still be in the top 4 for this is good.

Somehow, whoever is in charge of the players and their harvesting their abilities at test level (which ultimately must be the coach), has managed to set in motion the processes which could see the ruin of many a potentially great player. Lets just hope that the next coach puts a premium on players not giving away their wickets, no matter what version of the game they are playing.

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Deans 1 – Henry 0

Before the Bledisloe Cup match, I made sod all of the Deans v Henry match up, but after tonights game, I have to rethink my position.

The exceedingly well coached Dean’s boys outthought the lack lustre Henry boys. I don’t care what anyone says’, it was the ability of a deans team to think on it’ feet, that simply out played the all blacks.

So in initial thoughts. Brad Thron. SO you get sin binned now for tackling around the chest and going up the body – nice product guys, soflty softly. It was not a sin binning offense. He hit Gitto around the chest and his arm ended up on his chets. It’s not a fucking yellow card offense to say the least.

From, what I saw, the ABs were hustled off the ball, out played and out thought, and that was only the coaching stff

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The Black Caps

Apart from the ‘beautiful game’ there isn’t a game on this earth that gets my attention like cricket does. While I was growing up, listening to the radio under my pillow to cricket commentary from the UK tours was the stuff of magic.

To this day, I still have the sound of the TV down and the radio on, but then that’s not surprising considering the lack of commentary that comes out of TV commentators. I wonder sometimes what they are getting paid for? So for the last few weeks it’s been an absolute treat to have the cricket from the UK again. Despite the results I am still loving the spectacle of the whole thing, a Lords Test is right up there with the US Masters for tradition and spectacle.

As for the Black Caps, I have several thoughts. Bracewell needs to be replaced before his time is up, the damage he is doing to the team is almost a crime. Well, I say Bracewell, for me, it’s whoever has the final say as far as team selection and batting positions go. I fail to understand why McCullum was selected as a batsman only. Sure he scored a half decent 70 odd, but in all reality, if those 70 odd had come further down the order, with potentially a batsman ahead of him scoring some runs, the outcome of the last test could possibly been quite a bit different.

I have never been a fan of dumping players just because their form is slightly down. I would rather see the whole team go down for a year or two, and then be rebuilt as a whole unit, than the continual dumping of players. England has shown the value of sticking with players, whom are from time to time out of form. I would love to see Peter Fulton in at number 3 permanently, go with an opening pair and ride out some hit’s and misses to see if it settles down, and the rest of the order will sort it’s self out.

Jamie How (22 innings – av 26. 1st class 120 innings, av 34
Aaron Redmond (6 innings – av 9, 1st class 124 innings av 31)
Peter Fulton (10 innings – av 26. 1st class 106 innings av 45)
Ross Taylor
Jesse Ryder
Jacob Oram
Brendon McCullum
Daniel Vettori
Kyle Mills
Tim Southee / Jeetan Patel (pitch allowing)
Chris Martin

Bowlers are a different breed. They can be changed to suit the conditions without affecting their performance to a certain degree. We have some quality bowlers and we have some up and coming bowlers. So the likes of O’Brien, Mason and Franklin all have a place in the squad. For me though, there is a fundamental failing in the sport of cricket that only 12 can be selected for a game, then if there is an injury some shumck off the street needs to be called in as 12 man. I’d prefer a squad of 15-16 to be able to be called upon right up to the toss of the coin, and then used if there are any injuries. That would allow for a full and stable squad to be called upon.

Back to that last test. Fulton called into the squad and then not used, was a failing of a massive proportion. I fail to see how he could have been called in, if they were thinking about using McCullum in the position he played all along. I would have rather seen us loose with a solid squad and players in the correct position, than what looked like a patch up job.

Lets develop a solid squad. Let’s watch the games they drop, but then also watch solid long careers develop. How many players have we lost along the way, whom if they were in squads like Australia and the England squad would have been given the time to develop into test match players.

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Rugby wins

I’ve been meaning for a while to give a plug and praise my beloved Canterbury Crusaders in their taking out of the Super 14 title again. It was a monumental achievement, considering they were again going through a period of rebuilding, and have some very exciting talent in that squad.

Much praise, as has been the case, must go to Robbie Deans. I’ve been a fan of his ever since his playing days and those glory days of the Ranfurly Shield in the 1980s.

Relive the moments here.

and

As pointed out, there is a culture in the Crusaders outfit that is bigger than the individuals, and it’s this as much as the talent they perpetually breed, that is fostering the success. I have no doubt that the replacement for Robbie will be in house and will have a great understanding of the culture of the outfit.

Well done Cantabs. However, as great as Richie McCaw is, as a captain, he’s no Todd Blackadder, but that’s a personal thing.

Also well done to the All Blacks. I thankfully was out of the country during the Rugby World Cup, and having to pay $20 to see a game in a pub in Vancouver was too much to handle. I actually watched NZ loose through the window of an Irish Pub in Boston, along with the 40 other people who didn’t want to pay (more outside than in – now there’s bad management). I was kinda relieved to be away from it all, because 10 minutes and 1 block away from the game, not a single solitary person around me knew or even cared about the result of a rugby match on the other side of the world.

So there was much pressure on the All Blacks and huge criticism of the reinstatement of the coaching staff, considering Robbie Deans was available. The All Blacks did a good job tonight, in the rain and the wind of Wellington.

It wasn’t vintage All Blacks and I am starting to wonder if we haven’t seen the best of Dan Carter (holly cow did he just question the golden one?). I don’t like the force back version of the game we play these days, unless it is done well and not countered. The break that Carter made with ball in hand to set up the second try (?) was excellent, why doesn’t he run with the ball more? Still for all my money, he’s no Andrew Mehrtens, but again that’s personal opinion.

Ireland were strong in defence and were very combative at times, turning us over in the rucks and malls. They’re pretty big all over the team, but in the end they had to play catch-up fottie and that’s always going to be hard against the All Blacks.

I didn’t like the selection of the front row, but they played well. I think Richie was outstanding, and Rodney was incredible in getting the ball and going forward. I just wish the All Blacks would use the ball in hand more. Perhaps if the weather is better we’ll see some of those silky moves.

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