Category Archives: Sports News
Bloomsbury are proud to announce that we have three books on the shortlist for the British Sport Book Awards. The three books to be shortlisted are:
Best Illustrated Book
Coppi by Herbie Sykes
Best New Writer
Sit Down and Cheer by Martin Kelner
Best Cricket Book
We’ll Get ’Em in Sequins by Max Davidson
The winner for each category will be announced on Tuesday 21st May 2013 – fingers crossed!
In light of the controversy surrounding the Manchester United v Real Madrid match last night and the sending off of Nani by referee Cuneyt Cakir, we asked Keith Hackett, author of You are the Ref: a Guide to Good Refereeing for his reaction. It makes fascinating reading, and raises a number of points not currently being discussed in the media.
‘There are clearly two standards of Law interpretation operating between English officials and the rest of Europe. In European games there is a lower tolerance level for the ‘raised boot’ challenge which will be punished with either a yellow card (Reckless) or red card if the Referee deems it to be serious foul play. English teams therefore have to adapt to these differences in law interpretation.
If the challenge in the game last night was met with a swift yellow card no one would have complained. The referee however decided to give himself a lot of thinking time and may have consulted with his colleagues to receive their view before surprising the majority of spectators by issuing a red card. Our coaching of Referees at the top level is to advise that we do not want any surprises of this type, and UEFA continue to hold regular training camps for Referees. Through the use of video clips we aim to get uniformity of decision making involving all Referees.
However, the question I pose is what homework did the clubs do on the Referee? If they had done their research then they would have understood the high probability of a red card from this referee in particular. He demonstrates great courage on the BIG decisions – that is why he is rated highly amongst his peers.
You are the Ref: A Guide to Good Refereeing covers in detail the law on foul challenges. Managers. Coaches Referees and Spectators should purchase a copy!’
Keith Hackett is a former international referee and now General Manager of the Professional Game Match Officials Ltd (PGMOL) - the referee’s governing body and, is the Referee Ambassador for the FA, Premier League and UEFA.
Paul Trevillion, renowned artist and illustrator provides the stunning images.
Guest Post by Anna MacDiarmid, Editorial Intern for Team Sport
The first major event on the tennis calendar, the Australian Open, is well underway. And the question on every tennis fan’s lips is: who will raise the trophy this year? British number one Andy Murray has already won one trophy this year, defending his title at the Brisbane International. 2012 was a fantastic year for British tennis, along with most British sport, with Murray winning an Olympic Gold Medal and the US Open, ending the UK’s long wait for a Grand Slam Champion. Can he top 2012 with a Wimbledon win? We shall see. While Murray is the only British male tennis player in the world’s top 100, things are looking up for female tennis, with young players Laura Robson and Heather Watson entering the top 50 this year. My question is: why must we tennis fans rest all our hopes on so few contenders?
Britain is the home of tennis, so why is it we produce so few Murray-like players? Most people love to sit down to a good Wimbledon match with a Pimms in one hand and some strawberries and cream in the other, so why do we not play tennis with such devotion? This is set to change; with such a good year for British tennis last year, as well as the lasting Olympic Legacy British sport is keen to promote, things are starting to look up. Tennis does have a reputation for being an expensive sport, and I can understand this as a tennis player myself. It is rare to find a court you can play on without paying £5 a game and often you have to pay an extortionate fee to join a club. However, things are set to change, with more free courts popping up around the country as well as taster sessions allowing people to try out the sport.
One excellent organisation promoting just this is Tennis For Free (www.tennisforfree.com). TFF works with schools, tennis clubs and local authorities throughout the UK to create more opportunities for tennis communities to utilise public park court facilities for free. One of their main projects is to provide free equipment and a 2 year coaching programme delivered by qualified coaches to all ages and standards for 50 weeks of the year, for free. Their website is also an excellent resource for finding courts you can play on around the country (…for free). Just enter your postcode and browse the results for your most convenient court.
January is the month to take up a new sport and get fit, so I say take up tennis, let’s start producing our own Federers, Djokovics and Nadals. This game really is fantastic for all areas of fitness, not only does it improve your aerobic fitness, but also builds muscle and improves balance as well as being great fun! The average player will cover between 3 and 5 miles during a competitive match and burn up to 600 calories per hour. Also tennis players repeat the same movements over and over which helps to tone the body. Don’t wait for the summer, pick up your racquet and get on court.
Editorial Intern for Team Sport at Bloomsbury, Anna is a keen tennis player and has been playing on and off for about eight years; she secretly hopes to hit the big time. While admitting racquet sports are probably the only kind of exercise she really enjoys, she does also like swimming, and desperately wants to try scuba diving in a tropical underwater world one day.
In his new book Sports Journalism (out 20th December 2012), James Toney, managing editor at national press agency Sportsbeat, gives aspiring sports journalists the inside track on the exciting and first-paced environment of sports journalism and how to get into it. He also provides a handy glossary so that when someone on the backbench tells you, ‘We’re off stone early tonight so need to have your copy filed by 8 and will add quotes later,’ you will soon understand what it means.
Here’s a few taster terms to get you started:
Backbench – The senior management of a publication or media outlet, which normally includes the editor, deputy editor, news editor and chief subeditor.
Filing – The act of sending your story to your editor.
Gaggle – An informal press conference, usually a gathering of reporters around a player or coach after an event.
Kill – To prevent a story from running. A kill fee may also be paid to a freelancer for a story that has been commissioned but not published by a media outlet.
Off stone – An old term, dating back to printing techniques, for the final time a newspaper must be sent to the printers.
Round table – When a number of journalists interview together, usually when time would not permit an athlete to give a number of one-on-ones.
Stringer – A freelance journalist hired on an ad-hoc basis to cover events.
Good sports movies are few and far between. For every Caddyshack there are a dozen Mike Bassett: England Managers. But they do keep churning them out. In the last ten years there have been no fewer than three table tennis movies, and a glut of lacrosse movies too. On the flipside, it’s high time for another bowls movie, because it’s been a decade since the last one. Whilst we’re waiting for that one, here’s a rundown of what must surely rank as the top ten greatest sports-related movies of all time. So incontrovertible is this list, in fact, that we might not even bother to leave the comments open at the end.
10. Field of Dreams
In A Beautiful Mind the voices tell Russell Crowe that he can break Soviet encryption codes and he gets committed for it. In Field of Dreams the voices tell Kevin Costner to build a baseball field and everybody just goes along with it. It’s hard not to be cynical about a movie that ends with you introducing your dead dad to your kids before running off to play catch with his ghost.
Such a splendidly triumphant movie about complete and utter failure that when it first came out the Daily Mail review supposedly questioned whether British bobsledders had been changed into Jamaicans (because of political correctness, of course). And yes, everyone misses John Candy, but what would he be doing if he was still around? He’d have had a gastric band inserted and married Lindsay Lohan, that’s what.
8. Fever Pitch
Nick Hornby’s novel was filmed twice within the space of ten years, one starring rent-a-drip (sorry, rent-a-dripping-shirt) Colin Firth, about Arsenal doing all right in the late 80s, and the other starring some American, about the Boston Red Sox. A baseball team. It is directed by the geniuses behind Dumb and Dumber, with a script written by a man whose pen name is Babaloo. Stick with the British version.
Shockingly, Michael Sheen doesn’t play Tony Blair for the fourth (fifth?) time in this fictionalised version of Brian Clough’s time at Leeds United in the mid Seventies. He spends most of his time attacking his own team, his own team spend most of the time attacking him, and then he gets booted out. Actually, maybe Sheen is playing Blair again after all.
Slightly less plausible than Field of Dreams, this one sees Tom Cruise’s agent develop a conscience and walk out of his lucrative career because he doesn’t like how big business has corrupted sport. He’s followed by a desperate single mother with a weird-faced kid and they all go on to make millions of dollars for Cuba Gooding Jr. But this money is good money, unlike the other money, which was bad money. You had me at vomit.
5. Raging Bull
Watching many of Martin Scorsese’s films feels like being punched in the head for three hours, so here you can enjoy a little postmodern thumping watching Robert de Niro bleed in glorious black and white instead.
Clint Eastwood not only produced, directed, starred and wrote the music for this bleak boxing drama, he also made the sandwiches for everyone on set. Nice guy. He’s not in the sequel, which got released direct to DVD and starred Angela Lansbury and Dick van Dyke as two amateur detectives (one a writer, the other a doctor) who get together to investigate the murder of a young female boxer. They pin it on Morgan Freeman, but he’s not in it either.
Followed by more sequels than Friday the 13th (Rocky 7 will apparently see a reincarnated half-cyborg version of Signor Balboa going up against killer boxing robots on a space station in the far future too), it’s often easy to forget the original was classic feel-good schlock for men. Apparently Adrian was originally going to be played by Dustin Hoffman.
Rowan Atkinson’s interpretation aside, the famous Vangelis theme is now hated by everyone who had to go to the London Olympics and got stuck behind someone who thought they were not only being very funny but also highly original when they started walking in slow motion whenever the theme started being piped over the loudspeakers. That doesn’t detract from the film, however, which is protected by a law banning dislike of it throughout England and Scotland.
Good surfing films are rare, so this luminous assault on the modernist idea of the city, depicting what happens along the Californian coast after a major earthquake, is an underrated classic. It’s also a poignant allegory for the rise of the Third Reich as prescient as Brecht’s Arturo Ui. Critics are divided over whether the bereaved grandmother who escapes her nursing home to seek revenge on the Surf Nazis with guns and hand grenades represents a complacent British Empire or isolationist America. Perhaps it is testament to the film’s depths that it can be seen to represent both.This is a guest post and views expressed here are entirely of the author, and can largely be considered tongue-in-cheek.
Feeling inspired by the success of the Brownlee brothers? Thinking of taking up Triathlon or just want to improve your current sporting performance?
Why not check out our Triathlon titles for guidance of avoiding injury, techniques and training tips for the swim, run and cycle. We even have a book on ultimate triathlons for those who think the traditional triathlon is a walk in the park…
Also coming later next year is a book on Triathlon for the over 50 by Ian Stokell – Triathlon for Masters and Beyond. Ian is one of the Guardian’s triathlon correspondents during the Olympics, but you can find more information on triathlon on his website: http://www.over50triathlon.com/