Jezza´S Sports Report
Hi, there Sports fans and hope you are not only enjoying this fabulous weather but also the ongoing Footie World Cup in Brazil. Now that we’re in to the knock-out stages it’s much more exciting and a few surprises to date with more to come, I’m sure, but more of that in my WC Report. So, what else has been happening in the World of Sport this last week?
Well, Tennis and at Wimbledon, Our Andy is dominating the sports pages as he appears to have happily and smoothly moved in to the Quarter Finals without losing a set! Win that and he’s probably up against Djokovic in the Semi, win that and I reckon it’ll either be the Fed or Rafa in the Final, so go for it, old son, and you could become the first Brit in most of our lives to actually retain the title. Lots of shocks in the Women’s with favourite and No 1 seed Serena Williams already out so ’tis looking good for my favourite, Maria “the Grunter” Sharapova. Interesting point here that if results at the time of writing go a certain way, 6 names of the 8 Quarter Finalists could end in “ova” with 5 already through! Methinks the Eastern European ladies are taking over the Women’s Tour!
In Cycling, everybody seems to be getting Tour de France fever as the event starts in Leeds on Saturday and I await ongoing reports from my spy-in-the-camp Jules C for next week’s report. Let’s hope Chris Froome can repeat his heroics of last year and make it 3 English wins in a row. However, not a very happy bunny from Scotland, David Millar, as, hoping to be going for his 13th and final TdF before retirement, he found out, only yesterday, that he had been dropped from his Garmin-Sharp team, thereby joining Sir Bradley Wiggins on the sidelines.
Golf now, and congrats to Englishman Justin Rose as he won his 6th American Tour title since 2010, this time the Quicken Loans National in New York with a play-off victory. With this success, he also now shares the record with legend Sir Nick Faldo with the most titles since 1945, on this, arguably the hardest of all the World tours.
Cricket, and after my diatribe last week concerning the parlous state of our 3 major sports, it looks as if somebody up ‘thar in the cricket hierarchy has taken my comments to heart, as a report (yes, yet another one!) has been commissioned in to the overall running of our major summer sport, so maybe, just maybe, something good will come out of that, although, being cynical, I doubt it! Anyway, at least the England selectors have now integrated some new, young faces in to the team, with all of them, Ballance, Ali and Gibson, showing promise, having all scored recent Test centuries and what a find is Chris Jordan as an all-rounder, with wickets and runs galore, so bring on the forthcoming Test Series with India, starting next week.
‘Tis all for this week, folks, gotta go and start Phase 2, my WC report, before tomorrow’s late, late deadline, so until next week, cheers for now!
Jezza’s World Cup Results
Last of the Group Results
France 0 Ecuador 0 – another South American team bites the dust but France lose their 100% record in a pretty dire performance. Still, they’re through and now face Nigeria.
Honduras 0 Switzerland 3 – adios to the former, but the Swiss go through to face Argentina in the last 16 and at least give us Europeans another team in the knock-out stages. Look out for Shakiri who makes Sir Chris Hoy’s thighs look like matchsticks!
Bosnia-Herz 3 Iran 1 – it’s goodbye to both but at least B-H came away with a win.
Nigeria 2 Argentina 3 – what a magnificent match and credit to both sides, as they both go through to the last 16, the Africans to face France and my overall tip to face Switzerland.
USA 0 Germany 1 – the European favourites go through, just, as group winners but given another severe test by Klinnsman’s surprise team, who also go thru’ as runners up and now face Belgium in the last 16.
Portugal 2 Ghana 1 – oh dear, oh dear, the best footballer on the planet and his team go home but probably the best individual performance of the WC to date from Ronaldo, with a pundit rating of 9.5/10 and such a shame. Great game and hats off to Ghana too!
S. Korea 0 Belgium 1 – my European “dark horses” finish on top of the group with 3 wins from 3 and now face the USA, so a definite watch on Tuesday.
Algeria 1 Russia 1 – well, you can’t say the North Africans didn’t deserve it as they go through to a last 16 clash with Germany as runners up. As for the Russians, methinks Capello has taken you for a ride and 6 million quid, something to think about on your way home!
Last 16 Knock-out Stage Results
Brazil 1 Chile 1 – wow, what a match! The whole of Brazil breathed a huge sigh of relief as the hosts scraped through against a magnificent Chile team, after extra-time and penalties. Oh, lest we forget, I thought Howard Webb, our referee and his English team were superb throughout, even denying, quite correctly, a home goal. Brazil now face Colombia in the Quarters so they’ll need to be on top form to get through that one!
Colombia 2 Uruguay 0 – absolutely the best team won and what a player that James Rodriguez is, the WC’s leading goal-scorer with 5 + 2 assists to boot, but keep your best for Brazil! Less said about Uruguay the better as “The Biter” is sent home in disgrace.
Holland 2 Mexico 1 – another stunner but Robben going to ground a bit too often as the Dutch come back from 1 down to score the winner, a pen in the last few minutes, and now face England’s Group winners and surprise package, Costa Rica.
Costa Rica 1 Greece 1 – yet another European team bows out, but another great game going all the way to extra time and pens. Brilliant from the Ricans with 5 outta 5 but Holland to come? Ooer!
France 2 Nigeria 0 – ooh, you lucky Bleus! Plucky Nigerians but lacking that edge in front of goal, whereas the French took their chances. Need to take all of them from here on in as they now face Germany for a Semi spot.
Germany 2 Algeria 1 – same could be said here as well, as Algeria played their socks off but class always tells in the end and could be a classic in the Quarter Final, French flair against German pragmatism in an all-European clash.
Argentina 1 Switzerland 0 – Argentina lacking ideas whereas the Swiss go all defensive until extra-time but with pens looming, Di Maria, who’d had a terrible game, scores the winner. So my tips go through, by the skin of their teeth to face Belgium.
Belgium 2 USA 1 – phew, what an incredible game! 39 shots on goal for the Belgians, 2-0 up in extra-time, and then they nearly blew it. So, another European team in to the Quarters to now face Argentina, but credit to the Americans for taking it all the way. Fact – first time in WC history that all 8 Group winners go through to the Quarters.
What can I say – I asked for goals galore and haven’t we just had them! 150 in 52 games after the Germany/Algeria last 16 match with an average of 2.9 per game, more than the whole of South Africa 2010 put together and we’re not even in to the Quarters yet! Feeling depressed one minute as my 3 “Heart” teams, in order, England, Spain and Nigeria, have all gone home, but elated the next, as my 3 “Head” teams, Argentina, Colombia and Belgium are all still there. Time for Jezza’s predictions so here we go: Semi’s to be Brazil/Germany and Argentina/Holland. The Final? Hmmmmmmmm – difficult so need a bit more time! Final word on Suarez, who proved once and for all to a world-wide audience, that not only is he a serial biter, but he’s also a liar and a cheat and he got what he deserved, a 9 match international ban and a 4 month all-football ban so my advice to Liverpool and Brendan Rogers is get rid to Barca, take the money and run! Moving on, “’eiwmbo”, yes, you know who I mean, is handling the WC well altho’ I’ve been banished to the spare room for the late matches! Only another 10 days and 8 games to go, oh ye gentler folk, so just bear with us!
(all times are local/Spanish)
Friday 4th July
France v Germany 18:00 hours
Brasil v Colombia 22:00 hours
Saturday 5th July
Argentina v Belgium 18:00 hours
Holland v Costa Rica 22:00 hours
Tues 8th & Weds 9th July 22:00 hours
Sunday 13th July 21:00 hours