The all singing, all dancing blog of Alex Guite

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Shooting yourself in the foot

This morning I enjoyed a rare luxury: a Saturday morning lie in, listening to The Today Programme (this is the link to click if you don't listen to Radio 4). There was some fascinating coverage of this afternoon's big match, Ireland vs. England. If you're a rugby fan who has stumbled across this blog by searching "six nations" I'm afraid I'm not going to start offering my armchair opinions on Wilkinson's injury problems or whether or not the Mark Phillips pay deal will spark wage inflation (check it out: I mentioned some topical issues in rugby). Rather what caught my attention was that this will be the first time an England team has played at Dublin's Corke Park stadium. The reason for this is not as I initially theorised because it had been the centre of a delayed building project and only recently opened (more topical rugby references). In fact it opened in 1913. It turns out that it is significant that England will play there today because in 1920 British Police Auxiliaries entered the ground during a football match and shot indiscriminately into the crowd, killing 13, in retaliation for the assassination of British intelligence officers.

Understandably everyone is treading pretty carefully and there has even been debate about whether to play the national anthem. In fact, the England team were given a presentation about the stadium's history and the shooting. England coach Brian Ashton had this to say on this morning on the radio: "We're well aware of the significance, well aware of the honour it is to play somewhere like this".

So far, so good. Then this:
"We'll just go out there and give it our best shot in this game of international rugby."

There are literally lists of sport cliches he could have used instead. He could have said "We'll just go out there and bring our A-game." That would have been fine. There is no way that could be taken out of context. Or this would have worked instead: "We'll just go out there and give it 110 percent." That also would have worked.

Of course it doesn't really matter, sport cliches are pretty meaningless. Or at least I hope so as otherwise theoretical physicists would probably want to examine footage of the recent England vs Italy match because according to Ashton "[England] got caught in a one-dimensional game". I'm not sure how to even begin visualising that.


At Sunday, February 25, 2007 12:09:00 PM, Blogger C─žarlie said...

That was indeed a pretty unfortunate chiche for Ashton to use there. The worst one I ever came accross was in the London Lite. The uncle of a girl who had been strangled to death had apparently "choked back the tears" as he spoke of her.

It is important to remember that puns can be used for both good and evil!

At Friday, March 02, 2007 12:16:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...



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