Sunday, April 10, 2005

Weekend Sporting Round Up

Phew! What a weekend for sport, or ‘sports’ if you’re in the States. (But why do you say ‘math’ and not ‘maths’?) It was Scottish Cup semi-final weekend but a disappointing one for the Edinburgh teams as both Hibs and Hearts lost their respective matches two goals to one to Dundee United and Celtic.. eh.. respectively.

Down south in Engerland, Manchester United suffered a shock defeat away to Norwich and in Spain, Real Madrid closed the gap on Barcelona to six points at the top of La Liga by beating them 4-2 in the game of the year. Olé!

On Saturday the 158th running of the Grand National, the world’s greatest steeplechase ended with some horse I’d never heard of and didn’t bet on, winning by fourteen lengths. (I’d put my entire life savings on a horse called Just In Debt, appropriately enough.) And this evening, some guy called Tiger Woods, another winner I didn’t bet on, won the US Masters at Augusta.

But the big sporting news story of the weekend happened at the event I attended on Saturday afternoon in my old home town of Falkirk. The local professional football team, Falkirk Football Club, was playing against Ross County at their new and imaginatively named stadium, The Falkirk Stad.... I’m sure one day it’ll take its full name of ‘The Falkirk Stadium’ but it’s only half-finished with two out of four proposed grandstands complete.

Victory against Ross County would clinch the First Division league title and promotion to the elite Scottish Premier League so there was a sizeable crowd seated in the stad when the game kicked off at 3.00pm. Battling a swirling wind, freezing temperatures and limited ability, both teams struggled to create many clear cut chances. Indeed, until Falkirk scored in the 67th minute, the only incident of note was the guy seated three rows in front of me who attempted to start up a rendition of that much loved Falkirk anthem, “You Are My Falkirk” (to the tune of “You Are My Sunshine"), in a key that was several octaves higher than is usually recommended or deemed healthy. By the time he got to the third line, “you make me happy”, it was clear to all in the vicinity that shattered glassware or a nasty embolism may soon follow. So it was something of a relief when he decided to cut the line short before “happy” in a series of coughs and splutters. I’m looking forward to seeing him at the open mic night next week though.

Falkirk held their lead until the final whistle and scenes of contented relief rather than mass hysteria spread round the stad as the fans looked forward to entertaining the likes of big guns Rangers and Celtic next season. After a short interlude to give the players and coaches time to pull on their tacky ‘Champions’ t-shirts (I can’t tell you how much I despise that practice in any and every sport) the entire staff returned to the field for a fitting lap of honour… well, half a lap really.

Documenting the woes and adversities suffered by Falkirk F.C. over the years would take a blog that tested the limits of most web servers and I really take my (much needed wooly) hat off to the loyal fans who’ve supported their local team through thick and thin. Mainly thin. It takes a special kind of dedication and devotion to keep turning up every week, more in hope than in certainty, and they truly deserve the adventure of big games and exciting football that’s to come next season. Now if they could all just bring along a fold down chair each to help with the stad…

Oh, and finally, it would be remiss of me not to mention that young Dr. Russell Thompson went one ahead in our series of titanic golf matches at Lenzie this morning with an impressive and deserved victory on the final hole. He was never down in the match and showed nerves of steel (to go with his existing metallic cahones) to hold on to his lead at the end. But in truth I am feeling remiss so I don’t think I’ll bother mentioning it.


At 11/4/05 8:47 pm, Blogger DC said...


What's an embolism ?

You wouldn't be so cocky about the "Stad" if you worked in the local Planning Dept & had to deal with the Health & saftey Executive ( the "Stad " is in a Major Hazard zone - something to do with petro -chemicals at Grangemouth & if a match is lit within 40 miles Falkirkshire would be history).

I happened to pass the stad on Saturday about 4:45 - traffic was murder polis - you wouldn't happen to know how many buses were there?

What are cahones- metallic or otherwise ? Are they painful ? I thought they were an Italian pastry.

At 11/4/05 10:26 pm, Blogger ropedncr said...

why aren't you a color announcer (whatever that is really) for monday night (the other) football in the states? you'd be great.


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