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The tribulations of switching careers

Though his success in both his careers – footballer and TV host/presenter – is undeniable, I have never personally warmed to Gary Linker. Well, save for the time he made those gestures – caught vividly on the TV cameras – to England manager Bobby Robson on the bench during the 4th July [...]

January 28, 2020 // 0 Comments

Fiorentina file: Fiorentina 0 Genoa 0

The high hopes of new owner US media billionaire Rocco Commisso are dissipating. We are still mid-table and the only real evidence of  his financial backing is we still have Federico  Chiesa. Over the last few years there  has been a revolving door of talented players from Florence like Alonso [...]

January 26, 2020 // 0 Comments

TheTanner Report: Charlton 0 Fulham 0

One of the factors in the Great Debate of attendance versus TV-watching is ease of travel. I watched this bore draw from the comfort of my sofa on the Skysport red button. I certainly would not have wanted to make a 3 hour journey home in the cold from Charlton. As it was, I was in bed by 10. [...]

January 23, 2020 // 0 Comments

The importance of realism

Let us be blunt – despite all its special camaraderie and virtuous trappings rugby union is no different to any other sport at the highest elite level. Without donning the rose-tinted glasses, down through its illustrious amateur history those who played the game, and its many fans, wallowed in a [...]

January 23, 2020 // 0 Comments

Test coverage

Once upon a time in the good old days of TMS, lengthy breaks in play were greeted with pleasure as the team could sustain a discussion on all matters cricket for hours on end. The modern broadcaster cannot so they have to pad out with replays of interviews, of the match and/or any other match. [...]

January 20, 2020 // 0 Comments

Brighton 1 Aston Villa 1

There is a misconception in football that we fans know much less than players, managers, coaches and pundits. This dull game – if it did nothing else – disproved this. On the bus to the Amex – the least car-friendly stadium in the world – I met a supporter I knew. He [...]

January 19, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Tanner Report : one nil to the Fulham

Two months ago, you would not ever have thought that Fulham would win 3 matches on the bounce 1-0. Yet last night’s victory achieved precisely that. The difference has been six foot five defender Michael Hector, a loanee from Chelsea, is very much a commanding presence in the back four. Alfie [...]

January 18, 2020 // 0 Comments

I suppose you could (just) make it up

Following Sandra McDonnell’s piece in the Rust touching upon the Saracens scandal engulfing rugby’s English Premiership, here is a link to a piece by Robert Kitson that appears today upon the website of – THE [...]

January 18, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Queen’s Gambit /Walter Tevis

Chess fiction is something of a rarity. Stefan Zweig wrote rather a good one (Chess) about a prodigy on a liner. Walter Tevis was seemingly more interested in pool. He wrote The Hustler which became a superb film with Paul Newman. The Queen’s  Gambit is about Beth Harman, an orphaned child who [...]

January 17, 2020 // 0 Comments

The growing pains of a major world sport

Rugby union’s capacity to exhibit the complexities and difficulties of a modern sport trying to advance in all directions – without yet generating the sort of income, turnover and profit that make any business model being applied actually work – continues to startle. The lack of any [...]

January 17, 2020 // 0 Comments

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