One more final chance
November 2011 - "There's no second chance to learn here. I think that's really clear. There are no more misconducts, if there's anything remotely close then he's gone". That's what Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder said when Zac Guildford was handed a four-week suspension by the NZRU after his drunken behaviour in the Cook Islands following the World Cup.
This week - "If he sticks to getting professional help, we'd love to have him back. If all the other parties agreed - Zac, his representatives and helpers and the NZRU - then returning to rugby could form an important part of his rehabilitation." Blackadder again as the Crusaders look to welcome Guildford back following an alleged alcohol-related incident last month.
Love to hate
Disgraced US cyclist Lance Armstrong has been named America's most disliked athlete, according to Forbes magazine. The doping confessor edged out Notre Dame star Manti Te'o, whose only crime was falling in love with a fictional girlfriend. According to the Nielsen/E-Poll survey, when it comes to damaging your image adultery outranks setting up dog fights. Tiger Woods was third on the list while Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick, who spent time in prison for his role in a dog-fight gambling ring, which included slaying underperforming dogs, slipped down the order to number seven.
There were plenty of strange "prop" bets on offer during this year's Super Bowl, from the colour of the Gatorade poured on the winning coach (none this year) to the length of the national anthem (well over the time set) but this one takes the cake. One of the oddest bets running during Monday's big game was based around Beyonce's performance during the halftime show and whether she'd be showing any cleavage during the first song. The former Destiny's Child singer began the performance in a conservative black vest, letting down punters who were picking a bit of skin on show from the opening song. She didn't disappoint teenage boys, though, changing to a more risque top for the second song.
Pregnancy leads to life ban
Portugal's Olympic committee has banned a female windsurfer for life for concealing her pregnancy so she could compete in the London Games. Despite being selected for the 2012 Olympics, Carolina Borges failed to turn up for the opening round. She emailed a Portuguese Olympic official at the time, saying she couldn't compete because of illness and personal matters. Medical personnel were unable to contact her to confirm her story and her accreditation was subsequently cancelled. The national Olympic committee said that, after an internal investigation, it has barred her from competing again for Portugal because she didn't inform authorities she was pregnant.
Maybe it was the sole reason they signed the two players but League One side Hartlepool made headlines this week when players named Hartley and Poole appeared on the score sheet. The aptly named Peter Hartley and James Poole both netted in their side's 2-1 win over Notts County. More importantly, the win lifted the side off the bottom of the table.
Got 'em, yes!
Brisbane lower grade bowler Rhys Yorke achieved the remarkable feat of two hat-tricks in two days for his Souths side last weekend. The opening bowler claimed three straight wickets, all lbw, on the Saturday before taking a second hat-trick in the team's semifinal clash the next day, Foxsports.com.au reports. What makes the story even better are the comments left on the Fox Sports website from two of the batsmen he dismissed: "I was his second wicket on the Sunday, I've never faced a slower opening bowler in my life!!" one wrote while another added "I was the 3rd wicket on Sunday. How that ball was hitting the stumps is beyond me. The standard of umpiring has gone downhill".
Last week we highlighted the under-15 soccer side in England that broke a 94-game losing streak with the first win in five years. Well, an American college baseball team broke an even bigger losing drought with their first win in 10 years this week. The California Institute of Technology side ended a 228-game losing streak with a 9-7 thrashing of Pacifica. However, it was a non-conference game which means they still haven't won a match against someone in their own league since 1988 - 463 games.
Well worth it?
A blogger at Get Football News has broken down Fernando Torres' wages at Chelsea which makes pretty depressing reading, and not just for Chelsea fans. The Spanish striker and wannabe goalscorer earns £12,588,618 ($23,423,854) a year. That equates to $ 1.9 million a month, $468,424 a week or $66,917 a day. Breaking down even further, that's $2786 an hour or roughly $7.8 million for each of his three league goals this season.
Nickname of the week
36 - The nickname of new England rugby star Billy Twelvetrees given to him by Leicester Tigers teammate Geordan Murphy, since twelve threes equal 36.