What a month!!.. If you are a couch adorning sports lover like I am, you would have loved it.. Of course, I had my share of luck. The break between my bachelors and what will hopefully be my masters could not have been more perfectly timed, it was good ole summer vacation time again. Usually, a really bad time to be free and wish there was some football to be watched. All the leagues fold up by the mid May or so, finishing with the final of the UEFA champions league. Of course, Wimbledon takes up a couple of weeks, but for the last few years Federer has reduced it to a fortnight's waste of his time before he lifts the trophy. This month sure was different.
The Football world cup has folded up, with the unlikely Italians winning their fourth. My predictions for a great Cup for Michael Owen and England fell flat on their faces. However, England went down fighting to Portugal, my team to hate in the tournament. Kicking someone who s trying to pull your T shirt of your back, in the balls, does not seem like a crime to me at all. And after Rooney got sent off for doing exactly that, England fought like lions, and actually had more chances than the portuguese. It was all to end cruelly, in a penalty shootout, with the killer blow from my player to hate of the tounament, the pretentious Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo dove his way through the tournament, each time rightously arguing with the referee that his leg was indeed severed!!! But surely, he'll be back with Manchester United soon enough, playing alongside Rooney, and being cheered by the same English public that booed him everytime he touched a ball in the match.
Genius really does seem to come with a dark side. The Rooney stamping incident, and another that is even more vividly imprinted in my mind, that of the great Zinedine Zidane crashing his forehead into the chest of the Italian defender Materazzi. Nobody knows what exactly happened, to prompt Zi Zou to do what he did, but who would have thought that the career of the greatest footballer of a generation would have ended in this manner. Brings back memories of Maradona being banned from International football during the course of the 1994 World Cup, because of drug abuse. If this were a movie you were watching, and it really seemed like you were for a while, with Zidane rising from the ashes, and taking France with him, it would have ended with Zidane lifting the Jules Rimet Trophy aloft with fireworks exploding in the background, and of course a lilting background score playing. The climax, instead, was red card and a silence that showed the disbelief that spread amongst not just the French, but amongst football lovers the world over. Zidane walked, while life turned and winked at you, smirking that cruel smirk.
Anyway, its been treat, now back to seeing if Gerrard can lift Liverpool to the Premiership this season, over Chelsea, the one goal he has not yet accomplished. Almost criminally, and of course widely overshadowed by the World Cup, yesterday witnessed another great sporting encounter, that of Nadal v/s Federer... in the Wimbledon final this time. Nadal gave Federer several serious scares, and many times in the course of the game, the King Of Clay looked set to extend his dominance over grass as well. It was the first time I have seen Federer being not merely worried, but actually threatened at the Centre Court. I say give it one or at the most two years, and Nadal will win one in England.
Of course, there was Rahul Dravid and Anil Kumble, inspiring India to an away win in the West Indies. And at the end of it, I can sigh contentedly and look over a bleak sporting calender stretching over the next month, wondering what I will do to while awat the time. Maybe, and just maybe, it's time get off my couch.