Spin comes to sport

Today’s papers are full of pictures of Mr A Murray, Wimbledon finalist. The front and early inside pages are full of assessments as to whether he can win.

Spare a thought for two great British sporting success which did happen yesterday, which daily papers fail   to place on  the front pages at all. The English cricket team completed yet another series win, this time against Australia. It reinforces England’s position as No 1 in the world.

Meanwhile at Wimbledon Mr J Marray became the UK’s first male doubles  Wimbledon champion for 76 years. It was a fairy tale end for a wild card late entrant. Presumably his fantastic success does not count because he did not have a spin doctor to talk the media through it all.

When England was busily losing the soccer contest our cricket team was winning in style. The papers went to town on the failure and largely ignored the success. Let’s enjoy our victories more, and put the striving into balance. There’s plenty of space to write up Mr A Murray tomorrow, if he does manage to beat one the world’s all time greatest players in the final.

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37 Comments

  1. Teresa Foot
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    Would you like to re-read your article and perhaps insert the word ‘men’ into the comment about the last British champion?!

  2. Stephen J Henstridge
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 10:52 am | Permalink

    “…first Wimbledon champion for 76 years…” Does Virginia Wade’s victory in 1977 not count?

    Reply: Indeed she does – left out male

  3. Ian Pattinson
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    And Bradley Wiggins is wearing the Yellow jersey in the Tour de France. That must have happened yesterday as well, because the last time I caught any Tour coverage the leader was Cancellara.

  4. alan jutson
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    I so agree with this post.

    I made exactly the same comment to my newsagent this morning, and to Mrs J over breakfast.

    I hope Murray wins, but it is only hope, which takes up the front, middle and back pages.

    Meanwhile huge success has been relegated to the inside pages in small doses.

    I feel disgusted with the Media today, and sorry for the winners who certainly deserved better coverage.

    • alan jutson
      Posted July 8, 2012 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      Mr Wiggins also now yellow jersey holder (leader) in the Tour de France failed to get much of a mention as well…

  5. Bob
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Apparently, speed bumps are being removed from the Olympic routes to allow the passengers of the 4,ooo Olympic BMWs to have a smooth ride.

    Some are obviously more equal than others!

  6. Frederick Bloggs
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    John: Your comment about a spin-doctor is ridiculous. So by extension are you really suggesting that without a spin-doctor we would not know about Andy Murray’s victory. Rather than blame spin-doctors, maybe you should criticise the press.

  7. Mark Stockwell
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    I’m afraid even with the word ‘male’ inserted, the statement remains incorrect: Andy Murray’s brother Jamie won the Mixed Doubles in 2007 (playing with Jelena Jankovic of Serbia).

  8. Mark Stockwell
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    Come to think of it, Jeremy Bates and Jo Durie (both British) also won the Mixed Doubles, in 1987. Britain’s record is not as bad as all that!

  9. Stephen J Henstridge
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    Also Jamie Murray (Andy’s brother), mixed doubles, 2007

  10. Ralph McHendry
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Well said Mr Redwood. England now has a well-organised,talented and determined cricket team. The news media should be giving this prominence. Or are they waiting for the team to lose so they can make headlines of the fact?

  11. Chris
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    Completely agree (with amended version!).

  12. Oldrightie
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    A certain British cyclist also took the coveted Tour de France yellow jersey yesterday.

  13. Derek
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

    I see the Saltires are out in force! I couldn’t care less whether Murray wins or loses. Too me Scotland is a foreign country just as Switzerland is. Should Murray win then maybe it will encourage Scotland to vote YES in 2014! I hope so.

  14. zorro
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    Yes, it shouldn’t surprise you…… Hardly anything about the English successes…just some twittering about you know who….Rest assured, I am at Wimbledon on no 2 coury cheering on Federer, by far the better player…..Come on Roger! Mr Cameron, Murray’s fellow Scot is there to cheer him on…..

    Zorro

  15. Mike Stallard
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    Panem et circenses……….

    But well noticed anyway!

  16. zorro
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    Murray only winnibg at start because Federer making twice
    as many unforced errors…..

    Zorro

  17. zorro
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Murray only winning at start because Federer making twice
    as many unforced errors…..

    Zorro

    • Mark
      Posted July 8, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

      Your unforced error noted!

      • zorro
        Posted July 8, 2012 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

        LOL

  18. Tad Davison
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    At the time of writing, during breaks in the tennis play, the BBC keeps showing shots of a particularly nauseating individual and his so-called glamourous wife, sitting in the crowd. I really fail to see why such importance is afforded this muppet who can’t even hold a decent conversation.

    It is said he is a fantastic ambassador for football, yet he was recently seen fighting opponents in a game for his club side. Some role model! It is also said he did much to bring the Olympic games to London. I’d be interested to know how much hard negotiating he actually did, and I suspect he was there merely for others to rub shoulders with.

    These people who are famous merely for being famous make me want to puke. There are far better and more worthy people. Why does the BBC perpetuate this fascination with a person who is lucky more than he is talented?

    Tad Davison

    Cambridge

    • Mr. Frost
      Posted July 9, 2012 at 1:53 am | Permalink

      There’s a lot to be said about the nausiating nature of those that are ‘famous for being famous’.

      However, the Beckhams have afforded their fame of their own right: the wife being a member of the most successful UK female band and the husband a mulitple title and cup winner in England playing for England’s best team for the period in which he played, a Real Madrid captain, has over 100 caps for England, including 50 as Captain.
      They may annoy you, but they have ‘earned’ their fame.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted July 9, 2012 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

        Wow! Forgive me if I don’t join you in swooning over them. I measure achievement in a different way. Singing in a manufactured band, or booting a pig’s bladder about and getting paid a fortune for it hardly ranks as a gift to humanity.

  19. zorro
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    RF outplayed him in the end…….Bad luck Mr Murray, always next year, or the year after…..

    Zorro

  20. i albion
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

    Mr A Murray didn’t manage beat the world champion …Oh dear …how sad…never mind.

  21. Old Albion
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    Mr Andy Murray the Scot from Scotland became the first Scot from Scotland to lose a Wimbledon men’s final. Scotlands Scottish loser Murray lost to a Swiss man who isn’t Scottish.
    Meanwhile Mr J Marray with his partner (A Dane) became the first Englishman to win a Wimbledon title for 76 years and was immediately reported by all the media as being British.
    Even Mr John Redwood reported him as being from the UK……………………

    • zorro
      Posted July 8, 2012 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

      Right we need to clear this up once and for all – Today Mr Murray was the first British born citizen to have reached the Wimbledon Mens Singles final since 1938 (Henry Austin lost) so that’s quite good…… and would also have been the first one to win that title since 1936 (Fred Perry)….except that he was comprehensively outplayed and outclassed by Roger Federer…..Is that OK?

      zorro

  22. lifelogic
    Posted July 8, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    Rather like say the presenters on newsnight what they say and the odd words they use show their view point very clearly – even when only asking a simple question.

    Only people who have little interest in football, (usually public school boys) and with some interest (or history) in the hugely inferior and rather artificial & contrived game of Rugby Union ever calls football “soccer”.

    They hardly even use their feet for the game. I think its main advantage at schools is they can get 30 on one pitch and lack coordination or large girth is not a problem at school level anyway.

  23. zorro
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 6:35 am | Permalink

    http://news.sky.com/story/957699/brave-fight-praise-pours-in-for-murray

    This is what is wrong with this country……

    Zorro

  24. Chris
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    You may like the Guardian editorial today “In praise of Jonny Marray”:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jul/08/in-praise-of-jonny-marray
    as well as the letter in the D Tel about his sportsmanship:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/letters/9385113/Primary-school-grammar-wars-metalinguistics-vs-the-naming-of-parts.html
    SIR – In the final of the men’s doubles at Wimbledon, at 4-0 in the fourth set tie break, Jonny Marray and his partner won the point that would have made it 5-0. However Jonny admitted that his racket had touched the net, although neither the umpire nor other players had noticed this. The score was adjusted to 4-1, and in fact the British player and his partner went on to lose that tie break.
    Justice was done as Marray and Nielsen went on to win the fifth set and the Wimbledon title.
    The single act of unusual and outstanding sportsmanship is an example to all sports people.

    John Newth
    Eastbourne, East Sussex

  25. i albion
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    This IS what is wrong with this country The winner and the best tennis player in the world had to stand there looking like a plank while the loser blubbed for (it seemed like)…… well quite a while!

  26. Electro-Kevin
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    We know of your passion for cricket, Mr Redwood.

    It’s just unfortunate that football and singles tennis offer such big titles that other sports are eclipsed when there is a great hope on the scene as we had in Murray.

    Scots please note, the willingness of the English to get right behind you when you’re winning and we’ve already lost.

  27. RDM
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

    John,
    Spin has been used in RU for years. I remember complaining to you about it, especially about BBC Wales doing surveys outside the Millennium Stadium, after matches. A good place to Test for Independence or Devolution sentiment!

    WRU (and MD) was blatantly used throughout the Law Making Powers vote!

    As far as I am concerned; it’s just another tool for the élites to get their own way, especially those doing a deal in Cardiff with those within the East London Club, at the moment.

    The best defence; a clear, and broadly supported, vision for the future, etc … !

    The Party (Conservatives, that’s us!) doesn’t seem unitied?

    I can’t see how the HoL, for example, as constituted, can be part of it? It has failed in it’s Strategic/Legal Oversight (Function). And it’s not Representitive (Form)?

    Regards,

    RDM.

  28. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted July 9, 2012 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

    Talent – or the lack of it – will out. Spain, Portugal, Italy and perhaps Germany are superior to England’s soccer team. My heart goes out to Steven Gerrard and Scott Parker, two central midfielders the wrong side of thirty, who were knackered 20 minutes before the end of every game, because we kept having to recover possession of the ball. They gave of their best.

    There are 3 players better than Mr A Murray. Federer’s career is approaching its end, Nadal is always vulnerable on grass. That leaves Novak Djokavic, who has an off day about once every two years.

  29. R M Lomax
    Posted July 10, 2012 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    Thank God the annual Murrayfest, formerly known as Wimbledon is over for another year. The BBC coverage is appalling – every player and his dog were asked about Murray, “was this his year” etc., all responded dutifully and said he would, blah, blah. Dear God it was a nightmare and the BBC should be ashamed of its coverage. I watched the French Open on channel 4 because they are so much poorer than the BBC their coverage was of the matches, not the celebs, their mates or the misery guts Andy Murray. Even the adverts had more relevance that Sue Barker and her host of freeloading BBC employees

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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