Kicking Balls: AFL Round 22 Preview

31 08 2007

Kicking BallsWell finally we come to the end of the home & away season. Only 1 spot is up for grabs in the 8, but still plenty of shuffling for position to continue. Plus it will be nice to get back to actually playing footy rather than all the dramas going on off the pitch.

Collingwood vs Adelaide
If Adelaide win, they are in the 8. Lose, and they need results to go their way. Collingwood are playing to see if they can finish 5th or 6th, with the latter the most likely. For some reason I can see the Crows getting up in this one and making the rest of the battles to get in the 8 a non-event. Having said that, the Pies proved last week they aren’t done with yet and still think they can muster a september challenge. I’m tipping the Crows by 15 points.

Richmond vs St Kilda
It’s not inconceivable that, deflated from watching their season end the night before, the Saints may just get rolled and lift the Tiges off the bottom of the ladder. Somehow I see the Saints finishing off with a win though. The Tiges will struggle to contain the Saints forwards and on-ballers in what could be the last game for Robert Harvey and Fraser Gehrig, though rumours are circulating they’ll be talked into one more year. Saints by 20 points. Read the rest of this entry »


Top Sports Stories in Japan… (August 31)

31 08 2007

Jana Rawlinson - SUPER-mom!Much cooler today… actually considering jeans!

Anyway… today’s top sports stories in Japan:

Understanding Rugby: Other War Dances

31 08 2007

I’m posting this after getting a request as to what other war dances exist that are performed at the beginning of Rugby… after doing my piece on the All Black haka, Understanding Rugby: The Haka.

So, there are a few other pre-match dances that occur… the Fijians perform the Cibi, the Samoans the Siva Tau, and Tonga have the Kailao.

Without a doubt, the Haka of the All Blacks is more renowned, but others are definitely more war-oriented. The Haka is a dance of celebration, of life-over-death. Each of the others is an actual war-dance.

The Cibi
The Cibi has origins in the warring between other pacific island nations, and was used first in the Fijian national team’s pre-match warm-ups during a tour of New Zealand in 1939. They went on to become the only nation ever to tour New Zealand, and remain undefeated.

Ai tei vovo, tei vovo Make ready, make ready,
E ya, e ya, e ya, e ya; Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
Tei vovo, tei vovo Make ready, make ready
E ya, e ya, e ya, e ya Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh

Rai tu mai, rai tu mai Look here, look here,
Oi au a virviri kemu bai I build a war fence for you,
Rai tu mai, rai ti mai Look here, look here,
Oi au a virviri kemu bai I build a war fence for you,

Toa yalewa, toa yalewa A rooster and a hen
Veico, veico, veico They attack, attack, attack
Au tabu moce koi au It is forbidden for me to slumber
Au moce ga ki domo ni biau Except to the sound of breaking waves

E luvu koto ki ra nomu waqa Your ship is sunk below,
O kaya beka au sa luvu sara Don’t think I’m drowned too?
Nomu bai e wawa mere Your defence is just waiting
Au tokia ga ka tasere To crumble when I attack

A short, of-average-quality clip of the Cibi

Read the rest of this entry »

Good luck to the Mornington Volleyball Club!

30 08 2007

A volleyball club waaaay back in Australia that I used to have strong ties to has done a pretty impressive job in the Victorian State League.
This weekend, the following teams will compete in the finals:

  • Junior Boys (vs Yarra Ranges)
  • Junior Girls (vs Monash)
  • Men’s Div. 2 (vs Renegades)
  • Women’s Div. 2 (vs Cossacks)
  • Women’s Div. 1 (vs Renegades)
  • Men’s Honours (vs Falcons)

Should these teams win through this weekend, they go to the Grand Finals on September 8th.

As a former member who still maintains (tho’ somewhat tenuous) ties to the club, all the best guys. Go get ’em!

Go Mornington!

A Kicking Balls Special: Channel 7 vs AFL/AFLPA – The War begins

30 08 2007

Kicking BallsIt would seem that the issue of Channel 7’s obtaining and airing of private medical records is going to get ugly. Really ugly. Players are refusing to do interviews with Ch7 reporters (except at Essendon, where 7 is a sponsor, and Chris Grant and Darryl Wakelin answered questions also at their press conferences yesterday) and there is talk of boycotting 7’s coverage of the Brownlow. The AFL met with 7 yesterday, and talks didn’t go according to plan. 7 has refused to agree to permanently surpress the content of it’s controversial news report. The AFL and AFLPA are seeking a public apology, and 7 has said it would not name the players involved in the controversy, and it would commend the AFL for it’s attempt to tackle the problem of illicit drug use, but they will under no circumstance agree to suppress all the information in the documents. So what does this all mean and what are the contributing factors to each sides arguments?

AFLWell, we’ll start with the AFL. Now don’t get me wrong, they have the best interests of the game at heart. And the ‘best interest of the game’ is a clean image, and they will go to extraordinary lengths to maintain that image. But therein lies the problem. Messages have been delivered time and again that illicit drug use is rife in the sport. It has become incredibly obvious that the AFL was extremely naive about the extent of illicit drug use when it initiated the 3-strike policy. Read the rest of this entry »

Top Sports Stories in Japan… (August 30)

30 08 2007

Women’s steeplechase at the World ChampionshipsDefinitely starting to cool down… a welcome respite.

Today’s stories in Japanese sports:

World Athletics Championships 2007- Review of Results thus far

29 08 2007

So, we have completed 4 days of competition at The Nagai Stadium in Osaka and have seen some fantastic athletics. For those of you who’ve missed out on the action, I’ll try and bring you up to speed on the results we’ve seen thus far.

Day 1

Luke Kibet wins the Men’s MarathonCompetition kicked off with the Men’s Marathon. As so often is the case in championships, the time was slow, but given the conditions (30 degrees and 60% humidity I believe) this is not surprising. Marginally more than half the athletes finished the race, won by Kenyan Luke Kibet in 2:15.59, the first Kenyan to win the World Championship marathon since Douglas Wakihuri in 1987. Qatari Mubarak Hassan Shami (formerly Richard Yatich of Kenya) took silver just ahead of Victor Rothlin of Switzerland. Japan won the team event after it’s athletes took 5th, 6th, 7th and 13th, ahead of Korea and Kenya 3rd.

In the womens 10000, Tirunesh Dibaba overcame some drama to win the title again. At one stage she was well adrift of the leaders clutching her stomach, but somehow fought back into the race and eventually win in 31:55.41, with Turkey’s Elvan Abeylegesse 2nd in 31:59.40 and Kara Goucher (USA) holding out Joanne Pavey from the Uk for 3rd in 32:02.05. At just 22 Dibaba is sweeping womens distance running off it’s feet in much the same way male compatriots Haile Gebresselaise and Kenenisa Bekele have done for the past 14 years. Read the rest of this entry »