Sportsmasnhip

Ben Stokes walks on water

Utterly amazing innings and thoroughly deserved. Ben Stokes played a 1-day innings with one wicket to spare. What a talent. Amazing game. On the edge of the seat stuff. One of the all time classic matches.

Stupidly, Australia wasted a review which ended costing them when it mattered but that’s the pressure of the game. A dropped catch and a fumbled run out. It doesn’t take away the 73 Stokes helped get for the last wicket. Australia had chances and failed to execute.

Arise, Sir Ben?

The magic of varied ability sports

Having been so touched at the Invictus Games last year, it is so nice to hear another story of a young boy, Joseph Tidd, missing a limb sharing a magical moment with a player, Carson Picket who has the same condition. USWNT would do well to study how true champions interact.

To be honest while one can appreciate the efforts of an Usain Bolt, Marlene Ottey or a Michael Phelps in the Olympics breaking new records, there is a mystical spell cast when you see people missing limbs, blindness or another condition, overcoming incredible odds to compete.

Coming first is great for the varied ability competitors but every time you will see winners stay back and encourage those yet to finish to get across the line. The energy that brings to the crowd and to the athletes is nothing short of mesmerizing.

Forget the chest bumping of the elite athletes doing it generally for themselves. If one intends to go to the 2020 Olympics, forget it. Buy tickets to the 2020 Paralympics instead because you will literally see the impossible happen right before your eyes. It is utterly uplifting.

Note in Australia there is a group called Heroes with Abilities which gets groups of people with varied abilities to play rugby league. Same sort of passion and you’ll see people play for the joys of it rather than the trappings that come from it.

Celebrating like champions?

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Good to see the World Cup victory hasn’t gone to their heads.

Great role model for kids

The world’s longest Oscar acceptance speech laced with identity politics which closes with a message for all kids who look to Rapinoe as a role model from the 6:30 mark. All class.

Democrats doing what Democrats do best

So the Democrats are proposing a bill to pull federal funding for the 2026 World Cup if the US Soccer Federation (USSF) doesn’t fix the gender pay gap between the men’s and women’s teams.

Surely in a country that dominates the world in inflated sports contracts based on performance that these politicians might be on top of the idea that it is driven by the market, not by socialism and equality. The superstars in sports on balance have the edge that many of us do not possess.

If the women’s team was paid more than the men’s team, would Manchin seek to redress the inequality back the other way? Here is betting he wouldn’t say a word. CM has always argued women should be paid more than men should the economics support it.

When it comes to soccer the women’s World Cup generated $131m in revenues vs the men’s World Cup at $6bn. There is a reason for that. If sponsors see that the women’s game is such a great opportunity to market then they’ll flock without the need for legislation.

Equal pay! Equal pay!

No longer is pride in representing a nation the core of a major sporting event. It is all about activism and grievance. The oppression obsession. The crowd joined in shaming the FIFA boss and the United States Soccer Federation (USSF) based off little or no true understanding of the facts at the women’s World Cup Final. The stadium would have made Kim Jong-un blush at the symbiotic coordination. It felt eerily similar to the crowd scene from 1984. It is unfortunately so telling of today’s society. Never have they had it so good, but act is if they’ve never had it so bad.

However isn’t the point of playing for one’s country about the “pride” in representing it? If Rapinoe hates Trump, that is one thing and her personal choice. She is not alone. Should her personal pet grievances outweigh the 330m other Americans she represents? Why not ask for the flag to be removed from her strip?

If she wants to kneel during the national anthem she is nothing more than a hypocrite who seeks to rub it in the face of those who have pride in their country. She is a conditional citizen. Much like those Hollywood celebrities who claimed they’d leave the country if Trump won. He did and they’re still all there.

If Rapinoe wants to truly protest, she should refuse to play. She should sit out and watch America flail and then witness the USSF panic as sponsors dry up and have them run to her. Yet the trappings are such that her principles take a back seat to the expediency of the luxuries afforded by her talent.

She can rant all she wants outside the field. Free speech. CM is all for that. She has a profile to do that. Yet when representing the country, why not respect her fellow citizens rather than throw the toys out of the pram using profanity against a democratically elected president? What she doesn’t realise is her wokeness is exactly the type of thing that will produce the same result in the 2020 election. People are sick and tired of the constant political correctness dragged into places it needn’t be. She is only going to retard the growth in the sport if she continues turning a beautiful game into a platform of white noise.

Rapinoe may tell the media that “we’re over it” with respect to equal pay. However has she considered that if she stopped being such a brat that even more sponsors might beat a path to her door? If she displayed the types of values that represent those of the sponsors and broader society rather than lower the level to the man she repudiates she might surprise herself? Set the standard, Megan! Don’t lower yourself to it. Is having a high number of LGBT players truly the secret sauce of the US team as you claim?

What if men identifying as women demand a place in the side? Physically they’ll dominate the women players as they are already doing in so many areas of sport. Don’t they deserve an equal opportunity? If they trial and outplay all the biological women, will you begrudge them? Or accept that “Science is science. Trans rule“? The Democratic Party has enshrined trans players in women’s sports as policy. Be careful what you wish for.

For the record, CM has always stated equal pay in sports is a farcical quest. It has never been equal. Nor should it be, because the talent pool would never be able to be developed in a way that is self sustaining for the audiences to watch it. Cristiano Ronaldo gets $100m per year because he is “that good”. He sells more strips each year than his fellow teammates. He scores lots of goals. He gets endorsements because he is so talented. Corporations see a return in the investment. Ronaldo has 78 million Twitter followers vs his Real Madrid captain, Sergio Ramos who has a pitiful 16m. Rapinoe has 725,000. Should she get paid the same as Ronaldo? US men’s soccer team player Landon Donovan has 1.3m followers. Does the USSF see that the box office is sadly still skewed to the men’s game?

If we truly want ‘equal pay‘, shouldn’t we demand that each player plays for exactly the same amount of time and limit the physical distance they run? After all it would be unfair for one player to do less or more work than another. If the goalie had to be included in the physical exercise equality argument then field players could only have a two minute stint at best. 10 players would need to be replaced every two minutes of the 90 played meaning a 450 player side. With GPS tracking, the rules of the game can be changed so that can be accommodated in theory.

We know that such a game would be boring to watch and cause audiences to abandon such spectacles because professionals sports require no participation medals. We cheer the player that has the extra stamina, skill and guile to win matches and pay to watch that privilege. Not watch a game where talent is castrated.

For starters, Rapinoe should address the inequality within women’s soccer, before targeting the broader gender pay gap. No doubt she gets paid a lot more than some of her lesser known teammates. No one discusses that factoid. Crowds consumed by propaganda based group think champion the causes of people who already earn probably way more than they’ll ever do. Were the crowd chants aimed at the Dutch women too? Or just the Americans who were the ones fighting this pay dispute.

CM is also on record for saying that female tennis players should be paid more than men for the higher audiences they attract. The reality is outside of the World Cup, women’s soccer does not attract the revenues of the men’s game (partly due to men’s game having decades more time to develop). That will take time. It is hard to find willing sponsors to even it up if the return on that endorsement is lower. Sponsors aren’t just rich benefactors.

In closing, shame on the crowds for dragging an international event into a twisted spectacle. What they don’t realise is that such actions will only work against them. Fans want to escape the stresses of daily life, not pay high ticket prices to have it directly served up. Maybe the #USWNT needs to look at what has happened to the NFL after political correctness engulfed it.

Megan, a bigger truism is that, “Economics is economics. The market rules!”

”New Balls, Please”

Forget 135 years of tradition. Let’s pander to politically correct identity nonsense where there is zero need for it. What is it with the faux outrage mob that leads the England Lawn Tennis Club (ELTC) to feel pressured to “move with the times”? Whose times exactly? Does the ELTC honestly believe people might be triggered by the use of “Mrs” or “Miss” when they win a game, set or match? Even Hawkeye would roll its eyes at this clear “out.”

Tell you what, why not ask each individual tennis player what their preferred pronoun is and have the umpire address them accordingly. Here is betting that none of the players will request a change to basic biology and marital status.

To be honest if the height of oppression for the LGBTQI+ community extends to the umpires calling a game at Wimbledon, one suspects we are beyond the threshold of grievance that will change anything on margin.

If the ELTC wishes to push the “equality” ticket, perhaps they should dispense with the tournament being split by gender? Why stop at pronouns? No point being half “woke”

Will the ELTC lead the way to allow those men who identify as women to go head-to-head with Williams, Barty or Osaka? Why not? If they know they’ll never beat Rafa, Federer or Djokovic why not seek equality elsewhere by cheating a system the championship convener will end up encouraging to “move with the times.”

Time the fans asked the ELTC for “new balls please“.