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Sport journalist who cracked Super Rugby’s format wins Nobel Prize for Physics

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Aucklander and Newshub presenter Ross Karl has been awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize for Physics after becoming the first person to successfully understand Super Rugby’s new format.

Karl’s groundbreaking work, which took the form of two minute video, has successfully demystified the competition for anyone else who also possesses a post-graduate qualification in mathematics, meaning that most New Zealand pubs will be equipped with at least one person capable of explaining it to their friends.

“After I’d spent hours trying to replicate SANZAR’s fixtures list by using techniques such as spirographing, throwing darts at a board, and ingesting copious amounts of LSD, I uncovered that there was method to their madness,” said Mr Karl in an interview with Scientific Atheltican. “My discovery that SANZAR genuinely hates rugby fans, and sees them as little more than unintelligible cash cows was a huge eureka moment.”

Karl’s eureka moment led him to review a number of other SANZAR decisions that helped support his discovery.

“When you looked at the bigger picture, that SANZAR never gave previous format changes a chance to bed in beyond a year or two, or that they keep thinking that the quantity of rugby was more important in driving audience numbers than the quality of rugby – despite all evidence to the contrary – it really painted a picture that SANZAR just doesn’t give a damn about Super Rugby’s fans and assumes they’ll just throw their money at whatever sparkly new product and format they throw at them,” Karl said.

Karl also pointed out despite his discovery, nobody should be surprised by SANZAR’s behaviour. “To be honest, look at how the NZRU butchered provincial rugby in New Zealand. They had a great format in 2007 and 2008 that people were starting to turn back up to watch again, and then they proceeded to make the whole thing so complicated that to this day nobody knows what’s going on. It’s hardly surprising that with the NZRU involved with SANZAR, they’d take a similar approach to murdering any success Super Rugby had.”

Hurricanes fan glad expectations dashed early in season

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Following their thrashing at the hands of the Brumbies in Canberra on Friday night, Wellington based Hurricanes fan Callum Webb is reportedly relieved that he can consider the season over after one game.

“Not many people realise how hard it is being a Hurricanes fan,” said Callum while he contemplated the serenity of the harbour from his Khandallah townhouse. “Each year we’re told things are going to be different, that this will be the year we go all the way, and it always ends up in defeat and disappointment.”

Glancing down into his luke-warm cup of Nespresso coffee, Callum continued, “Last year was the worse. Mark Hammett had successfully trampled our hopes into the dust when he left, and we honestly didn’t expect much of Boyd at all. But then the Hurricanes went and got us all excited, played some great rugby, got us our first over home final, were overwhelming favourites. Our expectations went through the roof, we’d forgotten all the things we’d been taught from past golden runs. We should have remembered how it all ended. These are the Hurricanes after all.”

We go outside, where his Hurricanes top is hanging on the washing line drying on an usually sunny and calm Wellington afternoon.

“It’s easier this way,” Callum reassures himself in front of me while reaching up and holding the sleeve of his Hurricanes jersey. “Losing the first game so badly means I won’t bother to put any emotional investment into the team this year. If you do well, I’ll be pleasantly surprised. If you crash and burn…”

Eden Park management to ban spectators from having fun at matches

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Following the ejection of Sri Lankan supporters from playing drums at the final T20 match between the Blackcaps and Sri Lanka on Sunday, Eden Park management have confirmed that they have instituted a new Code of Fan Conduct that explicitly prevents supporters from expressing the emotion known as fun at matches.

“Nobody goes to Eden Park to enjoy themselves,” said Eden Park Trust Chairman Doug McKay. “I mean really, the public transport connections are rubbish, there’s no parking for miles, the food and beverages are overpriced, the beer is warm, and there’s virtually no shelter in the seats from the elements.

“With that in mind, the Eden Park Trust Board understands that there’s no way anyone looking for a good time would attend an event at Eden Park, so in order to ensure that the small handful of people so miserable with their existence that they regularly attend fixtures at our ground, we’re taking steps to ensure that their misery isn’t interrupted by hooligans who may in anyway be appearing to enjoy themselves at the stadium,” added Mr McKay.

Eden Park Trust clarified that patrons partaking in any activities or facial gestures that indicate that they may be enjoying their experience at the match will be forcibly ejected by security. In leaked guidelines to security contractors, these activities include applauding, smiling, speaking with other spectators, or consuming an alcoholic beverage in less than 10 minutes.

“We feel that our new measures will ensure that going to a game at Eden Park is as thoroughly miserable as intended,” said Mr McKay. “This way true sports fans, and users of Twitter, will be entirely at home at our facilities.”

The Eden Park Trust Board clarified that children will still be allowed to attend games at the stadium, pointing out that nothing induces a state of abject hopeless than having bored, fighting children running around.

Chris Gayle takes defamation action, claims no exposure of himself could ever be indecent

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High profile and sometimes West Indian cricketer Chris Gayle has launched defamation proceedings against Fairfax Media following the outlet’s claim that Gayle exposed himself to an unnamed women. Gayle has countered the claims by pointing out that in the unlikely event that he had exposed himself, it wouldn’t have been indecent because, “Have you seen my body? I’m fucking ripped.”

In evidence, Chris Gayle has submitted numerous photos of himself in various states of undress, each with post-it notes pointing out how his physique is better than the average man.

“I’m Chris Gayle, once you understand that, and understand my body, you ain’t going to be thinking seeing my naked ass is indecent now are you?” Gayle said at a press conference in Melbourne.

Gayle then had to be restrained from undressing himself in the press conference by his lawyer, to which he commented, “I just want these lovely ladies and fine gentlemen to know what decent really looks like.”

For their part, a representative for Fairfax Media has said that while the organisation couldn’t comment on the Gayle defamation claims, saying “We’re still recovering from seeing Shane Warne without his top on. There isn’t enough bleach in the world to remove that image from your minds’ eye.”

Wallabies refuse to acknowledge existence of New Zealand as a country

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Following on from their refusal to refer to the All Blacks by name, the Wallabies have gone one step further and are now denying that the country of New Zealand exists and they are already world champions.

“Obviously we’ve filed a complaint with World Rugby over the fact that the team we’re playing this weekend is claiming to come from a country that doesn’t even exist,” said Wallabies coach Michael Cheika at a press conference a Twickenham this morning. “We’ve seen the Facebook page ‘Does New Zealand exist?’ and between that and the lack of this alleged country appearing on most world maps, we’re pretty sure they shouldn’t even be at the World Cup.”

Cheika added, “If that’s indeed the case, that New Zealand is actually just a fictional country created for the purpose of Hollywood marketing, then we’re obviously already world champions.”

Subsequent to Cheika’s announcement that New Zealand does not exist, the Australian Rugby Union has gone through its social media channels and deleted any posts that refer to either the All Blacks or New Zealand. A statement from the ARU simple said: “We don’t know what you’re talking about. There’s no such country and, if there were several inhabited islands somewhere off the coast of Australia, then surely they’d appear on more maps.”

For their part the All Blacks weren’t phased by the Wallabies refusal to acknowledge either their or New Zealand’s existence.

“The fact they can even read enough to understand place names on a map is a pretty amazing achievement for a bunch of convicts,” said All Blacks’ coach Steve Hansen.

New Zealanders refrain from talking smack online for fear of jinxing All Blacks

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“I can’t do it bro, I just can’t do it,” said Matthew Bridge as he contemplated making a smart arsed remark about the Wallabies chances in the Rugby World Cup final against the All Blacks this weekend. “If I start laying down the smack against all my Australian friends, I just know I’m going to jinx the boys and the Wallabies will bloody beat us.”

Matthew’s story is the same as that afflicting many New Zealanders this week as they contemplate the days until the All Blacks meet the only team to beat them in 2015. It seems that fans have learnt from 2003 when, going into that now infamous semi final against the Wallabies, their sky high confidence and cockiness towards Australians backfired on them when they went to work on Monday.

“I used to think that me winding up fans of opposition teams didn’t have an impact on how the All Blacks played, but after 2003 and 2007, I’m not so sure anymore,” said Matthew. “I’m also a Hurricanes and Wellington Lions fan, and after talking down at the Highlanders and the Magpies, and we lose to both of them, I’m really not sure I have it in me to smack talk the Wallabies this time around.”

“The last thing I want is the entire country blaming me for jinxing the result.”

For their part, Wallabies fans have been busy posting photos of all the trophies they have won in matches against New Zealand sides recently, including the Rugby League World Cup, the Netball World Cup, the Rugby World Cup, and the Rugby Championship.

“Stone the flaming crows, I’m not worried what those little sheep shaggers think,” said Convict McInbred when asked whether he was worried if his posting a photo of a kangaroo jumping on a kiwi might cause the Wallabies to lose.

Study finds shouting at TV boosts team performance by 7.9%

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A newly published study by Otago University has discovered that fans who shout abuse or encouragement at their favourite sport team through the TV can actually have an impact on how well their players perform.

The study which was conducted by using ITM Cup games featuring the Wellington Lions, where researchers could be sure nobody else would bother tuning in, has revealed that when fans are watching their side on TV and shout abuse, encouragement, correct the referee, or throw cans of Tui at the screen, it lifted the performance of the Lions by an average of 7.9% versus games where nobody was watching.

“As a society we’ve always intuitively suspected that haranguing our sports teams through the TV would positively impact their playing ability, but it’s great to finally have proof that it does have a measurable impact,” said Dr Lorraine Wallis from Otago University.

“We measured how the Wellington Lions performed in games with no fans watching on TV, fans watching but in silence, and fans who were vocal in recommending how the team could play better, and we were amazed at how much of a difference a bit of armchair coaching could actually have.”

“Thankfully we didn’t have to control for people turning up to stadiums to watch the games, as no one attends ITM Cup games anyway,” added Dr Wallis.

While the study found that shouting at the TV was effective, it unsurprisingly revealed that like most things on Twitter, tweets were useless.

New Zealanders to spend week in fetal position

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With the news that the All Blacks will once again meet France in a Rugby World Cup quarter final match in Cardiff, thousands of New Zealanders have found themselves unable to function and are being found curled up in a fetal position crying “Richie loves me, Richie loves me.”

With the trauma of having Wayne Barnes rob 2007 Rugby World Cup quarter final from the All Blacks fresh in their mind, All Blacks fans have been unable to cope with facing their French tormentors in yet another knock out game.

“Anyone but France, fucking anyone but France,” cried Cameron Webster of Wellington while rocking back and forth in a ball. “The nerves man, they’re just not made for this kind of shit.”

“If Wayne Barnes is drawn as the ref, I’m out man. Game over man, game over man. Ain’t never going to watch no more rugby.”

For their part, several All Blacks were reportedly hauled off a flight back to New Zealand at Heathrow, following rumours that the team were also struggling to come to terms with their imminent departure from the tournament.