Biggest Sports Weekend In Recent Times

Rugby World cup 2007

Formula 1

We have two biggest sporting events lined up on this coming weekend.
bq. On Saturday 20th Oct England will take on South Africa in their second successive Rugby World Cup final at Stade de France stadium, Saint Denis north of Paris.

Come Sunday we have final race of Formula One racing season with three drivers in with a shot at Championship.  
First of all I had not followed Rugby matches untill this years Rugby world Cup. Any sports World Cup has this power to create a euphoria, hasn’t it?. Although it was pretty difficult catching up with some action with matches being telecast at 2:30 AM Taiwan time I managed to see some of the highlights. I saw the first semi final England Vs France and was hooked onto it the moment England Left flank Lewsey scored a try inside 2 mins of the game. A bit unfortunate for France but then after that the game was right on.

Talking about Saturday final be assured that this Rugby world cup final is going to be a cracker of a match given this background. SA a.ka. Springboks have thumped England 36-0 in their opening encounter of qualifying round and handed them dubious honor of being the first England team not to score a point in a world cup match. But after that England campaign has shocked whole world. First they came over Samoa 44-22 with 2003 world cup hero Jhonny Wilkinson booting 24 pts. Next they beat Tonga 36-20. Next up were 2003 finalist Australia waiting to extract revenge for 2003 defeat. England came on top with a hard fought victory on Aussies 12-10. With home supporters and France brimming with confidence they were ahead of England at 9-8 with 10 mins left in the semi final. But unfortunately for the host nation, Chabal aka The Caveman was brilliantly tackled by English defenders within touching distance of cross line and France lost the plot. After that it was left to Wilkinson to boot England into the final and boy he delivered when it mattered the most. He converted the 65th minute penalty for England to sink Les Bleus’ final hopes and then the drop goal to make England most unlikely finalist for this year given their past 4 year performance.

When the starting whistle blows for final it won’t matter if Springboks has won 4 out of their 5 meeting with England in past 12 months and racked 174 points against 46 of England. It will be completely different England team from the one they faced in the opening round where they humiliated them with 36-0 score line.

Come Sunday we will have a grand ending to a F1 season which was marked by drama, emotions, scandal, finger pointing and some incredible driving performances. This is by far the closest season we have had for years culminating with a Race in Brazil where 3 Drivers have a shot at Championship. Three drivers the top of the standings, Lewis Hamilton and  Fernando Alonso of MacLaren and Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari are separated by mere 7 points. This is as close as it can get. The last time it got so climatic was in 1981. I wish we have clean race without anyone retiring to technical failures. For Kimi to come on top there are many factors which needs to go his way such as if he wins Hamilton must finish 6th or lower and Alonso must finish 3rd or lower. But this is F1 and you never know whats gonna happen on the race day.

I am going to wrap up this little project of mine by this Friday and really hoping to relish these two of the biggest sporting events in recent times. 

[Update on 21 Oct, 07] Excruciating weekend for England. First they lost Rugby Worlf Cup final to Springboks i.e South Africa by 15-6. The match wasn’t exactly entertaining but hell SA was a better team & deserved to win. As if the pain of loosing Rugby World Cup wasn’t enough British driver Lewis Hamilton who was at the top of the standings in F1 lost world championship to Kimi Raikkonen by a Single Point. It can’t get more painful than this, can it?

Published: October 17 2007

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