SUP-Ah?! Slowmo Review – 14 (SUNDAY BEST I – Edition)

Simply for The BEST

PFA Trophy.  Simply for The BEST

4 of 6 of The English Premier League’s Best players (according to the  recently released PFA Player of The Year shortlist) were all on display during the period under Slowmo Review.  Each one of them had the opportunity to make an impression on their fellow professionals that could prove vital in their quest to be crowned as the Best last-man-standing!….(probably a lot harder than we think considering that the majority of them have a well earned reputation for diving).  Each protagonist made a notable contribution to a sporting-week ending SUNDAY BEST!  Thankfully a few of the sporting events went according to PUNt, as per my corresponding preview Blogpost, so allow me to start the review by putting my Best foot forward!

SUP-Ah?! – QUICK-PUNts (With the BEST of PUN-dhari thrown in):-

  1.  Juventus -v- AC Milan (SerieA):-  = I did PUNt A NARROW VICTORY FOR JUVENTUS and thanks to Arturo “King Arthur” Vidal, via one of the Best taken spot kicks you are likely to see this season, JUVENTUS NARROWLY BEAT MILAN 1-NIL!  As predicted the tie was closer than the 15 point gap that seperated the 2 teams at kickoff,  BUT that is scant consolation for The Rossoneri who now deal with the reality of being 18 points behind the Best of Italy, who themselves are now just 4 points away from another Scudetto!
  2. Zimbabwe -v- Bangladesh (Test Cricket):- = After confessing, not so enthusiastically, that I would NOT mind it too much if Zimbabwe wrapped up victory of the 1st Test on Saturday (which would have put my Sunday themed PUN-ting out of sequence…..selfish I know) I can now confirm that I DID NOT MIND IT AT ALL!  I had PUN-ted VICTORY FOR ZIMBABWE BUT I was NEVER expecting that ZIMBABWE WOULD EVENTUALLY WIN BY A CRUSHING 335 RUNS!  In terms of runs that is Zimbabwe’s Best Test winning margin (which in turn doubles up as Bangladesh’s 2nd Worst margin of defeat, again in terms of runs, in Tests).     
  3. Zimbabwe Open (Golf):- = As PUN-ted THE TROPHY FOUND IT’S WAY ACROSS THE LIMPOPO RIVER WITH ANOTHER SOUTH AFRICAN CHAMPION.  South African Jake Roos is that champion, courtesy of a final round 67 which helped him to -14 (14 under) overall, as he beat compatriot Darren Fichardt by one stroke.  Our afore-PUN-ted Zim teen sensation Ryan Cairns closed off with a final round of 68 to help him to -10 (10 under) overall which was enough for joint 7th.  He was Zimbabwe’s Best performer by far, with Sean Crocker being the next Best 10 strokes back, in 37th place.  So I suppose it is safe to say that we will be pinning our collective national hopes on Ryan, for the forseeable future, to repatriate that title to the right side of the Limpopo.
  4. Dynamos -v- Highlanders (Footy):- = The Best matches are those that, amongst other things, provide many talking points for fans to nibble on long after the final whistle has been blown.  This latest instalment of The Battle Of Zimbabwe derby has certainly done just that, even if the post match banter was somewhat delayed in commencing owing to the referee’s generous additional time.  The eventual 1-ALL DRAW played out true to the YET ANOTHER DRAW FOR DeMBARE! PUNt.  While I was fully prepared to channel my efforts towards poking fun at the fact that even though DeFending league champions Dynamos FC (aka DeMbare) are still undefeated this season, they find themselves in the bottom half of the league, closer to relegation than contention.  I am now “forced” to join my fellow Zimbos in revising our interpretation of Association Football’s 7th LAW.  Boooooooooring!  BUT crucial in trying to make sense of how the announced 4 minutes of additional time ended up being 7!  Which then proved pivotal to DeMbare finding the equaliser that denied Bosso a famous victory in Rufaro Stadium!  That is almost as comical as the fact that that was Dynamos 5th straight DRAW.  At this rate the DRAW column on the log table might soon be renamed DeMbare with statisticians keeping a close eye on how many DeMbares a team amasses per season.

SUP-Aaaargh!? QUICK-PUNts

  1. Bahrain Grand Prix (Formula 1):-  = Okay so even though SEBASTIAN VETTEL WON after PUN-ting that ALONSO WILL WIN IN BAHRAIN, I am consoling myself in the fact that I mentioned correctly, in the preview blog , that the sequence of  different consecutive podium-toppers would end on Sunday.  As it turned out that was the Best thing about the whole PUNt as Baby Schumi finished ahead of Kimmi, who he now leads by 10 points in the Drivers Standings, with Alonso only managing to finish in 8th (which leaves him 30 points behind overall).
  2. Liverpool -v- Chelsea (EPL):- = 3 of those PFA shortlisted players were involved in this match.  And they all left their mark on proceedings, …… some more than others.  Juan Mata assisted Oscar’s headed opening goal (it was his 12th assist of the season, 2 ahead of anybody else & Oscars goal was a league leading 15th one for Chelsea this season).  Mata also “assisted” in the passage of play that led to the games 3rd goal, a goal that had all 3 PFA Player of The Year candidates had a hand in, some more than others.  Mata’s corner kick was handled by Suarez before Hazard converted the resultant penalty.  At this point Luis had contributed towards 2 of the games goals, having assisted in Sturridge’s equaliser via a stupendous one touch lay off.  Then he did the thing that qualified him as this week’s PUNk (scroll down to the PUNk of the week section for further details), probably due to his misinterpreting what Brendan Rodgers meant when he asked for more bite at half time.  2-ALL is how it ended(yup that qualifies as a DeMbare), thanks to Suarez equalising dramatically with the game’s last touch.  Such a performance should have sealed his campaign towards lifting the PFA award, BUT one act of lunacy may have just put paid to that.  Gaffer Rafa  predictably bemoaned the additional time (the Highlanders FC fans are happy to share their copies of the 7th LAW with you).  BUT that, I suspect was just another feeble attempt at opting out of focussing on what everybody else was focussing on…… and while the world continues to focus on that, perhaps y’all will forget my NARROW WIN FOR LIVERPOOL misPUNt.

SUP-Aaaargh!? PUNt

  Tottenham Hotspur -v- Manchester City my PUNt = MULTI-SCORE DRAW!

  • The Welsh Wizard PFA nominee played eventually, after all the speculation that he might NOT…. and boy did he play, and justify his inclusion on that PFA shortlist of the season’s Best!  Expertly outfooting an equalising assist for Clint Dempsey before chipping in a 3rd Spurs goal in 7 minutes, his performance helped stun CIteh, and shred my PUNt!  With 15 minutes to go Bobbito Mancini’s boys were cruising on a solitary goal lead that appeared to be adequate enough to be the first nail hammered into that, Best case scenario, Jittery-Manchester-United-self-imploding-in-their-run-in coffin, that Brian Kidd alluded to.  By the 83rd minute, what I had dubbed the Kidd Curse (had it eventually materialised as per Mr Kidd’s wishes) had been broken, and instead the foundation had been laid for the Red side of Manchester to reclaim the EPL title on the back of a 3-1 SPURS WIN!! 

NB* stats as per, www.whoscored.com, www.fourfourtwo.com, www.whoscored.com,

HEZV-Oh!! Moment from the Blindside!

  • Ivanovic was added to Luis’ menu….. NOBODY saw that coming.  And now instead of receiving an accolade from the PFA, Suarez may just have to settle for the anger management sessions they have offered him.

PUNk of the Week!!

  • It has been suggested that all he wanted was to get a “taste” of Champions League success.  While his team’s kit sponsors use the tag-line We Come NOT To Play…… he has taken it a step further and interpreted it to mean We Come To BITE!!  There is very little doubt about his footballing brilliance, which had by most estimations pushed him to the front of the short-list of the PFA Player Of The Year Award.  BUT, there is now even less doubt that his latest homage to HANNIBAL could mean that he has just bitten off his chances at landing that otherwise deserved gong.  Yes, it has NOT escaped my attention that the name HANNIBAL is a strategically substituted ” D” and an “L” away from reading HANDBALL…..another trademark “skill” he is infamous for (tooth marks now included).  Love him or Loath him, there is no ignoring him….. and in the drawn match against Chelsea LUIS SUAREZ utilised all 96min and 45sec to put in a display that could well serve as the Best summation of the Uruguayan.  A wonderful one-touch lay off found Sturridge for Liverpool’s equaliser, then he handled the ball to concede the penalty that led to Chelsea’s go-ahead goal, before HE BIT IVANOVIC! and finally rescued a point for Liverpool with a breathtaking last-gasp header.  So you can see why some would choose to call him brilliantly controversial….. BUT hopefully you also see why for this week we can easily call him….. Luis “The PUNk” Suarez! 

    Cech has his scrum cap, Torres has a personalised face mask.  Perhaps Suarez can make this the new EPL trend

    Cech has his scrum cap, Torres has a personalised face mask. Perhaps Suarez can make this the new EPL trend

PUN-isher(s) of the Week!!

  • First up, much respect to, recently appointed, Zimbabwe National Cricket team coach Steve Mangongo.  Having been handed the reigns to steer the team, winning your 1st Test becomes a focal point for all the nay-sayers who may not be willing you on.  The associated pressure is then heightened when Bangladesh is your 1st opportunity to knock it out of the park, because even though they have just done well in Sri Lanka, if there is any team Zimbos fancy their chances against, it’s fellow basement dwellers Bangladesh.  Well done for delivering.
  • BUT the standout performance for the period under review has got to go to the man Firdose Moonda believes is proving to be the right sort of leader for Zim Cricket.  Captain-our-Captian BRENDAN TAYLOR!  His batting display in a winning cause was noteworthy as he PUN-ished the Bangladeshi attack.  Ok let’s not get carried away, it’s not like he beat Bangladesh all by himself…. BUT considering that his 273 (171 & 102*) aggregate runs were just 8 runs shy off what Bangladesh managed together …. he most certainly could have.  His contribution set him apart as the 12th captain to ever achieve the feat.  Those runs also add up to being Zimbabwe’s 3rd highest aggregate score behind Andy The Rock Flower’s 341 vs South Africa & 287 vs IndiaBUT he stands alone as Zimbabwe’s ONLY captain to score a hundred in both innings of a Test.  Keep that bat raised!
NB** Stats as per www.cricinfo.com,
By next SUNDAY the BEST EPL player, according to his peers will be known.  A lot of nominees did their BEST this SUNDAY…. BUT a special Monday Night performance may just help another candidate to bag the gong.  Mark-Oh-Row-Coat-Oh! / Congratulations! to them all.  BUT if their one-up-manship was at the expense of your team then please try your BEST to pardonthePUN-dit.

Until the next PUNt, be blessed and be GR8!!!

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