So it has been a while since we have actually posted another one of our Top 3 sporting moments of the week, so it was time for another one of these. Again, many sports fans could not get their a** up from their couches and their eyes off of their TV screens. With the winter approaching rather swiftly and epic fixtures such as Spain’s biggest football rivalry and a World T20 Final being scheduled, there was not much enticing needed to gain the attention of sports fanatics.
Let alone the fact that Lionel Messi was sitting on 499 career goals. That, already on its own was enough for any true football supporter to make sure that nothing came between him/her and the television screen from the first blow of the whistle…So, you sort of get why it was a big deal.
Our top 3 sporting moments of the weekend is dedicated to the latecomers. If you had been following the biggest moments in sport over the past week, you would have noticed that there was a bit of a pattern going on here. Most of the big clashes were decided at the death…We don’t know if they were trying to be fashionably late or whether their morning caffeine dose had only kicked in then, but there were many nail-biting affairs. Check out this week’s top 3!
Number 3: The REAL Deal
The El Clasico was what many of us had expected; it had heated battles, many yellow cards as well as a red, countless number of passes by FC Barcelona, a dramatic ending by a late CR7 goal and many records had been broken. However, it lacked one thing…Messi’s 500th goal!
Before kick-off many people would have said that this edition of the El Clasico had Messi’s name written all over it. Barcelona had already run away with the league and arguably have the best attacking line-up in the world. Also, he had recently scored his 499th goal in an international match prior to one of the biggest rivalries in world football, which made it the more than appropriate setting for the five-time Ballon D’or winner to reach that magical figure…alas, it was not to be.
The Argentine had rather had a lacklustre performance to his standards, or to be fair, to our expectations. Despite that, the match had everything it needed.
Although it was not a high-scoring affair, we saw 7 yellow cards of which the first 4 were shown within the first half-hour of the match. Furthermore, Sergio Ramos received his second booking of the game in the 83rd minute, which earned him a red card. The Spanish centre-back is making a bad habit of that, for it was his 4th sending off against Los Cules.
It also did not occur at the right time, as the scores were level. Luckily for him, that did not prove costly, as Cristiano Ronaldo came to the party a couple minutes later as he calmly chested down a long floated cross into the path of his right boot to slot the ball into the net. With that strike, CR7 had ended Barcelona’s 39-game unbeaten streak and also helped cap Zinedine Zidane’s first El Clasico win as a manager.
Number 2: CHAMPION…CHAMPION…CHAMPION…CHAMPION
If you have been checking out the latest trends making the rounds of social media, you would have come across the ‘Champion Dance’, which was created by Dj Bravo or better known as Dwayne Bravo amongst cricket fans. At first the dance was just performed as a wicket-celebration, but since the Caribbean team lifted the T20 World Cup trophy for the second time, the dance and the song has become familiarised with many people.
The West Indies played superbly throughout the T20 World Cup in India other than their only loss against minnows, Afghanistan. After they had beaten the host nation and tournament favourites in another thrilling match where Lendl Simmons came out as the hero, the West Indies seemed the most likely team to embody the DJ Bravo song (Champion).
What an exciting final it was to watch. Although England had slumped to 23/3 thanks to the guile of Samuel Badree, it was thanks to yet another fantastic innings by Joe Root who scored a half-century to help England get over the 150-mark. It was not without the help of a quick-fired knock by Jos Buttler who scored 36 off just 22 balls. If it was not for those two batsmen, England may have struggled to score over 100 runs. Despite that, the Windies bowled well to restrict the Three Lions to 155/9.
What seemed an under par score soon became a challenging target after the Caribbean side lost 3 quick wickets, including their danger man, Chris Gayle. Dwayne Bravo and Marlon Samuels steadied the ship well until Bravo was caught for 25 off Adil Rashid’s bowling.
There was still much work to be done and things started looking bleak when captain Darren Sammy had to walk back to the dugout with the score on 107/6. However, the passion, the belief and team spirit that the Windies portrayed shone ever so brightly with Marlon Samuels and Carlos Brathwaite edging their side closer to the target.
Chris Jordan responded exceptionally well in the second last over leaving Ben Stokes to bowl the final over with 19 runs to get on the board. Surely, it was England’s game to lose, as the relatively unknown Brathwaite was on strike…That’s what we thought as well, but Brathwaite did the impossible and smashed one of the world’s best all-rounders for 4 sixes in succession to get the Windies over the line.
Absolutely sensational! Despite figures of 3/23 and scoring 34(10) runs, the Man of the Match award went to Marlon Samuels who silenced his critics with his unbeaten 85 (66). What makes the West Indies feat more amazing is that they completed a treble of World Cups in one year with their women’s team and their u/19 side winning as well.
They are indeed, Champions!
Number 1: Talk about leaving it Late
Finally, the number 1 moment that occurred in world sports this past week. This…is by far…the most…insanely ridiculously incredibly awesome instant that occurred, purely because it happened in a literal moment…Are you wondering what we are on about?
If you caught the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Basketball Championship Final between Villanova University and University of North Carolina, then you would know exactly what we are talking about. Still no clue?
Let us paint the picture…You are in the dying moments of the NCAA final up against the country’s best team that has produced the world’s greatest basketball player that has ever graced the court. With only 15 seconds left on the clock your team is up 74 – 71 and all you need to do is defend.
However, a certain Marcus Paige has other ideas and somehow finds a little bit of space and makes the bold attempt for 3 points and get it! The scores are now tied and there is only 4.7 seconds left on the clock.
The opposition’s coach calls a time-out and you look up at the time remaining, knowing that this is your team’s best chance at the title in almost 30 years. What do you do?
Well, if you are Kris Jenkins, you have your point-guard carry the ball swiftly just outside of the three-point line to lay it off for you allowing you just enough time to catch and shoot! As the ball leaves you hand, the buzzer goes off and SWISH!
“And Villanova University win the NCAA Basketball Championship!!!”
There really are no words to describe it, so check it out!
From the El Clasico, to the World T20 Final and subsequently the NCAA Basketball Championship Final, let us know what your favourite moment was. If you feel that there was something else that needed to be on our list, please.
It was yet another great week of sports and there is no better way to describe it other than saying:
It’s the S#*T !