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The week that was in sport

30 January 2009 09:58
SUNDAY

News emerges that Millwall supporters were provoked into disturbance during Saturday's FA Cup tie at Hull City by the sight of Jimmy Bullard.

The home club's record new signing was paraded round the pitch before kick-off, an action reckoned too much for the delicate sensibility of the visitors from south London, who responded by chucking torn-out seats at their hosts. If the smiley Bullard sparks such a reaction then Brighton had better place their celebrity supporter, Des Lynam, under protective custody before their game with Millwall later this month, lest his crinkly charm unleash a riot.

As for the thought of what might happen should Millwall play at Sheffield Wednesday next season and their supporters catch sight of Michael Palin, we can but shudder.

MONDAY Despite his position as pre-tournament favourite, Andy Murray departs from the Australian Open tennis in the fourth round, losing to the Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in five sets and sizzling temperatures.

Setting a record for the plunge from hero to zero, Murray's future is written off on Radio Five Live, when presenter Nicky Campbell suggests that the result means the young Scot will become the Colin Montgomerie of tennis, destined never to win a major championship.

In the West Indies, Stuart Broad announces that he is to eschew the siren call of the Indian Premier League to concentrate on his England career. He will not be joining the gravy train on which the likes of Kevin Pietersen expect to profit to the tune of over $1million (£693,100) for three weeks work. The Indian Premier League responds to his snub by issuing the two word statement: "Stuart Who?"

TUESDAY Edwin van der Sar sets a record by becoming the first goalkeeper to prevent his goal being breached in over 1,032 minutes – 11 clean sheets in succession – as Manchester United win 5-0 at West Brom.

On the other side of Manchester, City's Robinho experiences a different kind of lock-down as he is arrested over an alleged incident at a Leeds nightclub. City's manager Mark Hughes explains that the Brazilian only ended up in Yorkshire in the first place because, while attempting to visit the Trafford Centre, he got on the wrong bus.

WEDNESDAY Colin Montgomerie is unveiled as Europe's captain for next year's Ryder Cup in Wales. As a health precaution, the corps of Welsh paparazzi are advised to invest in silent camera shutters.

At Wigan, Liverpool fail to win their fourth match since their manager, Rafael Benitez, unleashed an intemperate assault on his rival, Sir Alex Ferguson. Presiding over the country's wealthiest sporting institution, responsible for 15 years of untrammelled success and now seemingly capable of placing a curse on those who diss him, no wonder a survey this week unveiled the United manager as the most powerful man in British sport.

Despite his obvious physical attributes, this week Craig Bellamy was inexplicably overlooked for the lead part in Steven Spielberg's blockbuster movie version of Tintin. Instead, the part went to Jamie Bell. And the Welsh international captain left his seventh professional club, West Ham, to join his eighth, Manchester City, scoring on his debut against his third, Newcastle United.

THURSDAY Andrew Flintoff's suspect fitness means he is obliged to withdraw from England's final pre-Test warm-up game against West Indies A. In related news, in Rome the Pope expresses a life-long affiliation to Catholic doctrine, in Canada research reveals that bears prefer to conduct ablutions in the vicinity of trees and in Cardiff, the Welsh media have installed their team as favourites for the forthcoming Six Nations tournament.

FRIDAY Charles N'Zogbia says that he will never play for Newcastle again after his manager, Joe Kinnear, calls him Charles Insomnia. He is right to be insulted. Recent performances suggest the player has no problem falling asleep. Particularly when marking at corners.

Source: Telegraph