“A skinny ugly guy, chasing me around Africa with a camera.” This was Muhammad Ali’s recollection of being filmed by documentary-maker Leon Gast, while he prepared for his fight (or rumble) against George Foreman in Zaire (the jungle) in 1974. Never a simple production, When We Were Kings was not finished or released until the 1990s, at which point critics and awards-givers quickly gave it a fonder appraisal than Ali himself did, the film a hit at Cannes before going on to win an Oscar. Viewers rode inside the bus with Ali, we sat in his hotel rooms as he gabbed, we all but took the punches. A champion doc. … [Read more...] about The 10 best sports documentaries
Best young player
“Step in front of a runaway train”, it goes, “just to feel alive again.” It’s Far Away by Jose Gonzales, written bespoke for this very moment. It’s haunted and spare and resigned, but it’s beautiful. For a few moments it’s just you, your horse and Gonzales. The loneliness is as beautiful as it is stark. Nothing happens for the entire duration of the song. Nobody dies. Nobody attacks you. You just ride. When it’s over, and the dynamic score kicks back in, it almost feels like an intrusion. The beauty of the moment is gone. It’s back to business. The loss in that moment is tangible. It’s enough to stop anyone in their tracks. It’s even managed to shut up the gobbiest of walkthrough YouTubers, which is saying something. … [Read more...] about Do we need Red Dead Redemption 2 when the first provided gaming’s best moment?
England needed to reply quickly, and to the relief of the fans packed behind Oliver Kahn's goal they were back on level terms within six minutes. Beckham's free-kick from the near the left cornerflag appeared to have been overhit, but Gerrard diligently chased it down to allow Gary Neville to send it back into the goalmouth from the opposite direction. Nick Barmby gained a priceless flick to wrong-foot the German defence, and though the ball came to Owen at an awkward height he appears incapable of missing at the moment, and hooked a shot past Kahn for his eighth goal of a season less than a month old. … [Read more...] about Owen puts England in World Cup dreamland
Leon Draisaitl: From German prodigy to NHL top scorer Rising star Born in Cologne, Leon Draisaitl (middle) played in the youth ranks of the Kölner Haie German hockey team, for which his father, Peter, played in the 1990s. He moved to the Jungadler Mannheim development team in 2009 and spent three seasons there before moving to North America in 2012. In his finals season in 2011-12, helped the Jungadler win the German Developmental League (DNL). … [Read more...] about NHL star Leon Draisaitl on being leading scorer: ‘Something you dream of’
In factit was the Wembley game that better hinted at what was to come. With Seaman caught off guard from distance, an abject response to an early concession and a collective capacity to fall to the occasion, the defeat bore a strong resemblance to the way England would slump out of the forthcoming 2002 World Cup against Brazil, and many tournaments thereafter. And the fixture’s bipolar life-cycle – manic hype followed by a bleak performance and intense disappointment – was England’s ensuing decade in microcosm. Hamann’s goal had marked the start of an era, too. … [Read more...] about Golden Goal: Dietmar Hamann for Germany v England (2000)