What caught our eye this week in the world of sport? After a little reflection, Graham Caygill breaks down the best of the best.
1 Best recovery – England win the Six Nations
As impacts go, the one that Eddie Jones has had as England coach has been pretty instant. He inherited a side at their lowest ebb, after their elimination from the Rugby World Cup at the group stages. Yet, six months on and under his tutelage, they have won a championship they had not won since 2011 and have a very good chance of completing a first grand slam since 2003 on Saturday in France. Jones will not be blind to the fact there is a lot of work still to be done to make England a world force again, but as starts go this has been pretty good.
2 Best spoiling the party – New Zealand
India may well still go on and live up to the hype and win the World Twenty20, but their campaign did not get off to the start expected on Tuesday. New Zealand were magnificent in their clash at Nagpur, and silenced the home crowd at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium as they won by 47 runs. It is certainly not a death blow to MS Dhoni’s side, but it is defintely a reality check.
3 Best tantrum – Diego Costa
In terms of entertainment, watching Costa go mad at Everton’s Gareth Barry, appear to get so close to the midfielder he was accused of biting him, and then remonstrate with referee Michael Oliver was great fun. Unless you were a Chelsea fan. Once again the Spaniard had needlessly brought trouble on himself, and with a three-game ban on the horizon after he was charged with misconduct by the English Football Association, he faces even more time on the sidelines, making his club the losers of his inability to stay calm on the field.
4 Best comment – Andy Murray
In this dull world where sports athletes rarely say anything remotely interesting for fear of a public relations gaffe, hearing Andy Murray say Maria Sharapova should be “suspended” for failing her drugs test, and criticising racket company Head, for their defence of her, calling it “strange” was refreshing. There was nothing outrageous about those opinions, but the rarity of them, is what guaranteed that people sat up and listened.
5 Best result – Scotland beat France
Back to the Six Nations, and Scotland beat France 29-18 on Sunday at Edinburgh, their first win over the French for 10 years and first victory over someone not called Italy in the tournament since beating Ireland in 2013. The Scots have been massively improved under the coaching of Vern Cotter, and after they deserved to see those efforts recognised on the results sheet.