Today is a big sporting day. At Wimbledon it is men’s semi-finals day, and in South Africa we have the first quarter-final matches of the World Cup. My place on the sofa in front of the TV is already reserved!
Just like last year, Britain’s Andy Murray has made his way into the semi-final at Wimbledon, and that means that the nation and the press in particular are now getting very excited about the prospect of a British men’s champion for the first time since 1936. Although Roger Federer has now been knocked out, it still won’t be an easy task for Murray, as he has to play world number one Rafa Nadal today. Should he reach the final (a big if) he will be the first Briton to play in the men’s final since 1938. The nation would, no doubt, go into complete tennis fever !!
That fever will be heightened because there is no longer a distraction being caused by the England football team at the World Cup. They were beaten – well beaten – last weekend by Germany, and left the competition in ignominy. England has perhaps the greatest club competition in the Premier League, in which many world stars compete, but the national side have performed nowhere near those levels. In fact, so poor were they that there has even been a call for a Parliamentary inquiry into their abysmal showing! I have to say it is the worst performance I can ever remember from an England team at a World Cup finals, but that may be taking things a tad too far!
Anyway, the competition continues, and today sees Brazil take on the Netherlands in what could be the game of the tournament, and unfancied Uruguay play against the even more unfancied Ghana. It would be wonderful if Africa’s first ever World Cup were to see an African nation in the semi-finals, and they certainly stand a chance. Tomorrow will see Germany play Argentina – another clash of the titans – and Spain will play Paraguay. It should be a very exciting couple of days, and I am sure there will be much drama. The semi-finals take place on Tuesday and Wednesday of next week, and the final is on the following Sunday.
So, even with the inglorious showing of the England team, there is still plenty of sporting action to look forward to over the next 10 days. Now I have to go and claim that space on the sofa...