A new Low in scratch ‘n’ sniff

We’d barely recovered from the sight of former Aussie prime minister Kevin Rudd eating his ear wax on a lazy day in Parliament. Then Germany’s soccer coach did this. Joachim Low has apologised for the tug and sniff manoeuvre he pulled off during his team’s Euro 2016 win over Ukraine. “It was adrenaline and concentration….

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All stops to Loserville

It was a week for throwing away certain victories, Dutch cyclist Steven Kruijswijk most of all. Three minutes in front going into the final weekend of the Giro d’Italia, all he had to do was stay on the bike. Then this happened. The mishap paved the way for Vincenzo Nibali, struck down with dysentery days…

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Whistle blower admits Russia full of dopes

When it comes to doping, the Russians make Lance Armstrong look like a weekend pill popper. As the World Anti-Doping Agency decides whether Russia can compete at Rio, the bloke who ran Russia’s anti-doping lab has spilled the beans on a systemic doping program that operated during the Sochi Olympics. Here’s how it worked. Dope…

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Can things get any worse for Rio?

Brazil’s economy is tanking more than Bernie Tomic, the country’s infested with Zika-bearing mozzies, the water’s putrid and a stack of Olympics-related construction won’t make the deadline. Now, less than three months out, Brazil has just lost its president to a corruption scandal, with Dilma Rousseff suspended while she faces trial for creative budget accounting….

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Kyrgios missing from bad boy contest

Grigor Dimitrov and Bernard Tomic were duking it out this week for the mantel of baddest boy in tennis, a hotly contested title these days and strangely lacking Nick Kyrgios in recent days. Playing in the final of the Istanbul Open, Dimitrov made abstract artworks of three racquets to concede the match to Argentinian Diego…

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Bloopers aplenty in Olympic countdown

It’s been all about the countdown this week as we notched up 100 days to the Olympics on Wednesday. Michelle Obama celebrated by getting in some fencing practice with the US team, which looked more like an audition for the next Star Wars movie. The force is strong in this one. The Independent newspaper marked…

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If I was Chris Gayle’s missus

There are celebrity kids out there called Apple, Blanket, Pilot Inspektor, Audio Science, Princess Tiaamii (not an actual princess), Zuma Nesta Rock and Diva Thin Muffin Pigeen. The names are a scandal. But at least they’re not derived from an actual scandal involving one of their parents. Enter Chris Gayle, groundbreaker in all the wrong…

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Did aliens steal Spieth’s Masters mojo?

Much to English cricketer Ben Stokes’ relief, Jordan Spieth has been the talk of the sporting world this week. In particular, how he squandered a five-stroke lead and an almost certain US Masters victory in one hole. It was a novel way of marking the 20th anniversary of Greg Norman’s epic Masters choke, when he…

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Gentlemen, start your motor mouths

It’s taken 15 years for the Indian Wells tennis tournament to put a racism row behind it. With the Williams sisters ending their boycotts, the tournament was finally able to shake the memories of Serena being booed throughout the 2001 final and trophy presentation. It was a moment to celebrate. Then tournament boss Raymond Moore…

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Adam LaRoche and the pitfalls of father-son bonding

Baseball and babysitting. Not two words you’d expect to see in the same sentence, except: “Would you mind babysitting my brood while I go to the baseball.” But the retirement of an ageing major league baseball player last week has triggered an unlikely child care debate in the US. Chicago white sock Adam LaRoche took…

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FIFA plays the victim card

You’ve got to hand it to FIFA. Soccer’s ‘governing’ body has finally admitted that World Cups have been bought with bribes. But only because there might be a buck in it. In perhaps its most brazen step to date, which is saying something, FIFA is claiming ‘victimised institution’ status and seeking restitution from the US…

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Does Russian sport have a reading problem?

“What should Russian athletes do?” asked Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko. “Dance on the table? Sing a song?” Mutko was pondering aloud what Russia has to do to gain admission to the Olympic track and field competition after the world athletics body extended its ban over last year’s doping scandal. With Russia’s 2012 Eurovision entry…

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