A Great Sporting Weekend as Dunblane…I Mean GB, Win the Davis Cup!

Posted on November 30, 2015

On the face of it, it has been a great sporting weekend, what with a new world boxing champion, Englishman, Jamie Vardy, breaking a Premier League scoring record, and of course, Great Britain winning the Davis Cup for the first time since it snowed every Christmas and everyone in our nation had rosy cheeks and loved nothing more than beating the evil Hun in wars in between having a picnic with Cissy by a glistening trout stream.

I must admit, I don’t really like boxing any more and even though I was never any kind of expert, my interest dwindled around about the time Michael Watson got transformed in to a cabbage by Chris Eubank in the early 90’s. It is a brutal sport full of unsavoury characters wherever you care to look, whether it is those on the canvas or the spivs that promote them.

However, I do just about, still like football,  and like most other football supporters (except Manchester United ones I presume) I wanted Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy to break Ruud Van Nistelrooy’s goalscoring record on Saturday by scoring his 11th consecutive goal of the Premier League season.

Why did everyone want him to score? Well, mainly because Vardy is an underdog of classic proportions, a player who even now with his unprecedented elevated status, resembles a Matalan suit in Saville Row. It’s a real comic book story as at 28 and now an England international, Vardy can look back as a late starter who was playing in the 8th tier of English football five years ago with Stocksbridge Steels.

The fact that Vardy looks as out of place at the summit of the worlds richest league as his team Leicester City, has warmed the hearts of football fans that had been turned cold by the greed and inflated egos that dominate the Premier League. It is a breath of fresh air for the game to see an unfashionable mob like Leicester mixing it with the rich boys and we should enjoy it while it lasts, because it wont.

Still, despite Vardy’s heroics, the story of the weekend had to be the Davis Cup win by the Murray’s, an unassuming pair of brothers from Dunblane in the heart Scotland, who were representing Great Britain.


Great Britain: Davis Cup Winners

The record books will say that it was Great Britain who won the Davis Cup but lets be honest, Andy and Jamie Murray might as well of turned up in Ghent, Belgium, with their kit bags and their incredibly competitive mother, Judy, as the result would have been the same. No offence intended to the captain and the other players but they were little more than cheerleaders if we are going to be completely honest.

How Andy Murray in particular, has scaled such heights of excellence is beyond comprehension really as they were a family without privileges or the kind of private education that provides the facilities to prosper. They also achieved everything in spite of not because of the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association) who instead, choose to fund a catalogue of privileged and ultimately hopeless kids with hundreds of thousands of pounds in return for a Wimbledon first round defeat as wild card.

Still, that hasn’t stopped former useless no times champion and British player, David Lloyd, having a pop at Andy Murray for not giving enough back to British tennis. Murray has just won every game in the Davis cup from round one to the final to add to a Wimbledon, a US Open and an Olympic gold medal and if it wasn’t for the phenomenon that is Djokovic, he would be the most decorated sportsman in British history; so I am not sure what Lloyd expects?

Perhaps Murray should dig up Fred Perry and form a doubles partnership with him for next year, then we could call him a true sporting hero? Perry’s corpse would still be better than David Lloyd in his pomp.

When the trophy was won by Murray yesterday against a guy 14 places below him in the rankings but about 100 place above any of the LTA imbeciles, the irrepressible Sue Barker suggested that Murray should take the trophy on a tour of  UK schools to encourage the next champions to get out and play tennis. Whilst this was good sentiment, it was absolute folly and probably a good reflection of what Sue Barker knows about how the masses are educated.

Schools aren’t interested, they haven’t got enough funding and sport is no longer a key objective in state education; they have far too much time on their hands teaching kids to be thick. Playing fields are for housing or industrial estates to be built on, not for teaching children how to avoid being obese. Unless they have parents stuffed with money or blessed with the incredible desire, energy and presumably time of Judy Murray, kids have no chance.

Everything is left down to independent clubs run by volunteers who somehow find the energy and time to support their kids in between trying to make a living. The schools can offer nothing because they are not allowed to and they just don’t have the finance. However, some do manage to wallow in glory after their school team miraculously wins something courtesy of kids getting coached by local independent clubs.

He may not be everyone’s cup of tea but Sam Allardyce sent Alan Shearer rocking backwards on Saturday when Shearer asked what had happened to the North East production line of great footballers (Waddle, Beardsley, Gascoigne etc etc.) Allardyce knows the truth and said so. To David Cameron and Tony Blair before him, state school sport is just not an important factor on the education curriculum, so as much as those boys and girls clubs do, they we will always be fighting against foreign sportsmen and women who have a better physical learning background.

The private schools take in kids on scholarships if they show talent but they make up just 7% of the population and for whatever reason, public school sportsmen often seem to fail when the final reckoning comes. Perhaps it is because they are told how wonderful they are and when some bloke who has learnt to play tennis in a discarded swimming pool in Serbia comes along, they get their noses ground into the the dirt.

We should cherish the likes of Andy Murray and Jamie Vardy as they are unique in that they have somehow shone through in a system that makes their plight to be a top sportsman a near impossible one. They are also unique in that they did not come from pristine academies or schools that mollycoddle sportsman and give them inflated praise and salaries when nothing has been achieved.

The Davis Cup should have gone to the Murray family and the village of Dunblane, not those clowns down at SW19, they don’t deserve it.


1 Reply to "A Great Sporting Weekend as Dunblane...I Mean GB, Win the Davis Cup!"

  • Trevor
    December 1, 2015 (12:08 am)

    Great post Bob. I particularly like the image of a skeletal Fred Perry outclassing David Lloyd. I agree it’s always great seeing Murray doing well as it highlights just how much cash the LTA have squandered on Annabel Croft, Andrew Castle etc etc etc just because they came from the right side of town.

    And whilst I’m not a big boxing fan either it was also amusing to see Tyson Fury – essentially a well-to-do gypsy winning the Heavyweight championship.

    And yes, as a contest it was about a million miles away from a Foreman v Ali and Tyson is clearly a bit odd (and his Dad – imprisoned for gouging a guy’s eye out, is clearly a thug) but at least it was a triumph for the ‘common man’ versus the ‘establishment’. Britain likes their boxers to be polite or funny like jovial punchbag Frank Bruno and it was refreshing that Tyson’s success, like Murray’s, wasn’t as a result of attending a 30 thousand quid a year school.

    It’s interesting to compare and contrast their relative fortunes of the rugby union side raised through Harrow, Durham et al….hmm….like you say perhaps it comes from years of being told how good they are.

    Ian Dury is regularly on the play-list in the car (sometimes it’s a bit dubious for the kids to learn the words) but Jack Shit George was playing this morning…still as relevant today as then…

    “I’m a second-class person citizen-wise,
    This is something I must recognise
    It’s not my place to make complaint,
    But am I happy? No, I ain’t
    I missed my chance when I was young,
    Now I live below the bottom rung”

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