There are a handful of numbers that are imbued with meaning. Roger Bannister’s 3:59.4. Usain Bolt’s 9.58. And now Eliud Kipchoge’s 1:59:40. Kipchoge’s extraordinary sub-two-hour marathon in Vienna on Saturday is one of the greatest sporting achievements – recording a time that has never been achieved before and pushing the limits of human ability, again. It is a time on the fringes of what scientists believe is humanly possible. And yet record-breaking events such as Kipchoge’s seem increasingly common. Last week Simone Biles became the first female gymnast to win a fifth world all-around title, using two signature moves that no other woman has ever achieved. Sarah Thomas swam the English channel four times in a row, 134 miles (215km) in open seas in 54 hours. Dalilah Muhammad broke the 400m hurdles world record twice this year and Sifan Hassan did the same for the 5km and one mile events. In men’s athletics, Geoffrey Kamworor is waiting to … [Read more...] about Higher, faster, stronger, better … is there no end to what humans can do?
“The young boys did not accept the idea of playing with girls. I used to show them that I could play to challenge the stereotypical image of a football player in their minds. I resolved the situation by building up and training one team of female players only and had one team of male players coached by a man. Then they played each other and who won in the end? The female team. That’s how we solved the problem. We showed them girls could play. This helped them to start to accept girls” – Karime Akrouche, FutbolNet coach. Tensions are running high in the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon. As one embarks on the two-hour inland drive through the mountains, away from the opulence of Beirut, the once-white tents pockmarked with scraps of canvas and topped with tyres start to appear. Then their frequency increases until one cannot go 100 yards without being confronted by the devastating poverty that has flooded over the border as a result of the war in Syria. In the west the … [Read more...] about ‘We are superhero girls here’: how football is helping refugees in Lebanon
Barcelona’s attacking trident of Lionel Messi, Luis Suárez and Antoine Griezmann all got on the scoresheet for the first time together in a 3-0 win away to Eibar which took the La Liga champions top of the table for a few hours at least. Barça lead the standings for the first time this season on 19 points after nine games although Real Madrid, who have 18 from eight, can retake top spot when they visit Real Mallorca later on Saturday. Griezmann put Barça ahead in the 13th minute after a route-one move from his side. Clement Lenglet launched the ball from the heart of the defence to release the France forward, who calmly slotted inside the near post. The three forwards all combined for the next two goals in a sign that the trio are finally gelling after a stop-start season interrupted by injuries to Messi and Suárez. The latter brought the ball into the area for Griezmann to slide it across for Messi to score in the 58th minute. Griezmann was the architect of … [Read more...] about Antoine Griezmann inspires Barcelona’s easy win away to Eibar
Liverpool’s Champions League winners dominate the nominations for the Ballon d’Or after seven of Jürgen Klopp’s men were included on the 30-man shortlist. In all, 15 Premier League-based players were named alongside five-times winners Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Manchester City quintet Sergio Agüero, Bernardo Silva, Kevin de Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Riyad Mahrez made the list, as did Tottenham duo Hugo Lloris and Son Heung-min, while there was a place too for Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. There were also four spots for Barcelona players Marc-André Ter Stegen, Frenkie De Jong, Antoine Griezmann and Messi, while Ronaldo was joined by Juventus team-mate Matthijs De Ligt, who was also nominated for the young players’ award. Eden Hazard and Karim Benzema were Real Madrid’s only representatives, while World Cup winner Kylian Mbappé and Brazilian defender Marquinhos made it for Paris St Germain. Goalkeepers at four … [Read more...] about Seven Liverpool players on Ballon D’Or shortlist, Bronze and White nominated
So this is what a college athlete with real leverage looks like. Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray has done a masterful job pitting two sporting giants, Major League Baseball and the National Football League, against each other. Let’s rewind for a moment to explain what’s happened. Murray was a brilliant two-sport athlete in high school, which is little surprise given that his father was once a star quarterback at Texas A&M and his uncle played professionally for the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs. Murray started off his college career playing both sports, but the Oakland A’s were excited enough by his talent that they picked Murray in the 2018 first-year player draft and signed him to a deal that guaranteed the outfielder $4.6m. This despite the fact that Murray was still playing football. The rest, as they say, is history. Murray, who had been a fringe college football player prior to the 2018 season, strolled into the Sooner’s QB-friendly offense and … [Read more...] about Why Kyler Murray is set to forfeit a $4.6m MLB bonus and join the NFL