Ed Alexander casts his eyes over some of the more obscure sporting stories of the last fortnight
It’s round 5 of Exeposé’s biweekly review of the sporting world, looking at some of the lesser-known stories from the recent past. Today, there’s some super news for Paralympic athletes, a rather smoky Sydney Cricket Ground, and plenty more.
A Merry Magpie Christmas
You know what’d be a lovely gift this Christmas? A free ticket for 10 Premier League games. Well, if you’re friends with a Newcastle United fan, that may well be what you’re getting from Santa (your mate).
The Magpies have announced they’re giving all of their current season ticket holders the chance to secure an extra half-season ticket, so they can take that special someone along with them to St James’ Park.
Who’d have thought it – Mike Ashley isn’t the Grinch, after all.
‘Like Smoking 80 Cigarettes a Day’
While New South Wales’ were taking on Queensland in the Sheffield Shield, there was a nearby bushfire sending plumes of smoke into the Sydney Cricket Ground, creating a smoggy veil around the stadium.
NSW spinner Steve O’Keefe said of the bizarre environment (as quoted by BBC): “It’s not healthy. It’s toxic. That was shocking. For someone like me who smokes 40 a day, it’s now like smoking 80 cigarettes a day.”
Yes, even a heavy smoker was struggling with the fumes inside the arena, whilst golfers at the Australian Open were likewise affected by the bushfire. It’s all very, very Australian.
Never Again for Agen
Getting thrashed is never enjoyable, but it could be worse. The weather could be diabolical, and you could be playing in front of your own fans.
Sadly for rugby union side Agen, all three occurred on Friday night as they hosted fellow French outfit Bordeaux Begles in the European Challenge Cup.
The visitors left Stade Armandie with a 73-3 victory, running in 11 tries, including a hat-trick for winger Geoffrey Cros.
Agen, on the other hand, could only muster a solitary penalty in reply. It was a very forgettable evening for the team who are second from bottom in the Top 14.
Federer Gets Silver
On 20 different occasions throughout his career, Roger Federer has won a Grand Slam championship. It’s only fitting, then, for Switzerland to honour their finest ever athlete by immortalising him in silver.
The Federal Mint will release a coin worth 20 Swiss Francs in January, and Federer’s face will be on it. However, it looks like the veteran tennis star may also get his likeness embedded in gold, with authorities currently planning to make a golden Federer SFr50 coin by May.
Paralympics Reaches New Heights
There are 2.5 million tickets available for the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo, yet organisers have already received over 3 million requests for one, as reported by Sport Business.
At London 2012, a record 2.7 million tickets were sold, despite the governing body having received only 1 million ticket applications as they entered the final 12 months before the start of the games.
So, it appears interest in disability sport has more than tripled over the last decade, leaving the Paralympics in a pretty decent place as we enter the roaring ’20s.
Seattle Celebrate in Style
There are many ways to celebrate a touchdown in American Football, with players forever trying to out-do each other with their showboating.
Well, the Seattle Seahawks may take the biscuit, having just performed one of the most entertaining celebrations for several seasons.
Click this link to watch a faultless, synchronised dance from the Seahawks players after David Moore’s 60-yard touchdown in a 37-30 triumph over the Minnesota Vikings.