Vladimir Putin spent $US51 billion staging the Sochi Olympics, more than every other Winter Games combined. It wasn’t enough to adequately furnish the facilities, light up the fifth Olympic ring in the opening ceremony or snare the ice hockey gold for the hosts. But it does warrant a bit of tonsil work from Shirley Bassey.
The KP dummy spit
After being sacked by the English Cricket Board for not being a team player, Kevin Pietersen has gone all out to prove their point. Throughout the year, he hasn’t missed an opportunity to call for Alastair Cook’s head, while his autobiography left no teammate unturned. Sing it, Miley.
No sports uniform attracted more attention in 2014 than that donned by a Colombian women’s cycling team. You know the one I mean. Yes, that one. I’m going to leave it to Justin Timberlake, one half of the world’s most infamous wardrobe malfunction, to commemorate this one.
FIFA boss Sepp Blatter spent much of his year hosing down corruption claims over the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids. Before Christmas, he tried to pull a rabbit out of his bum, announcing a report into the matter, previously buried by FIFA, would now be released in full, kinda. “With the decision today, the crisis has stopped,” he said. Dream on, Sepp. You might have been better off singing this little ditty from Oliver.
It’s just a flesh wound
Aussie cricket captain Michael Clarke’s body has taken a stack of punishment this year. In South Africa, he fractured his shoulder in a brutal spell of bowling by Morne Morkel. In Adelaide, he looked gone for all money when he did his back while batting in the first Test against India. Remarkably, he returned the following day, physioed to the wazoo, to complete his century. Right now, he’s out with a dodgy hamstring and in a race against time to make the World Cup. But, much like Monty Python’s Black Knight, you can never keep him down.
Over to you, Chumbawamba.
Don’t play on an empty stomach
Uruguay’s Luis Suarez earned himself a four-month holiday from football after he tried to snack on Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup encounter. The way Suarez saw it, Chiellini ‘suffered the physical result of a bite in the collision he suffered with me’. There’s really only one song that fits the bill.
Winners are grinners — aren’t they?
Some people are never happy. Mercedes teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg spent the year holding down the top two spots in Formula One — and verbally beating the crap out of each other. Duelling banjos, anyone?
It was no Rumble in the Jungle or Thriller in Manila but the unscheduled bout between media heavyweights James Packer and David Gyngell in designer track daks on a Bondi nature strip did inspire the year’s best headline when the Northern Territory News slapped ‘Why I’ve Got a Packer Up My Clacker’ on its front page.
Send in the clowns. Don’t bother, they’re here.
He’s just not that into you
Ireland’s Rory McIlroy may have finished the year as the world’s number one golfer but that didn’t stop his countrymen giving him a razz at a recent rugby game over his unceremonious dumping of fiancee Caroline Wozniacki by phone just days after the wedding invitations were sent out.
63 not out
And finally, a quiet word from Bob Dylan in memory of Phil Hughes and others taken too soon.
Thanks for your support this year and I look forward to bringing you more sporting nonsense in 2015.
Have a safe and happy new year.