Besides Novak Djokovic having a ridiculously good year, taking tennis to new heights (again: after Federer-Nadal, who would have thought that there were any further heights to which tennis could be taken??), blah blah, the past couple of days saw two stupendous individual performances and one mighty team effort.

Yohan Blake wins the 200m in 19.26s at the Brussels Diamond League meeting. Photo: Reuters/Thierry Rogue

Yohan Blake became only the second person to run faster than Michael Johnson over 200 metres, and ran within .07s of Usain Bolt’s frankly ridiculous world record.

Jonny Bairstow

On his international debut, aged 21, Jonny Bairstow hit 41 runs from 21 deliveries to win the summer’s final one day international between England and India.

Paul O'Connell celebrates beating Australia. Getty Images

And Ireland beat Australia 15-6 at the Rugby World Cup. Australia, Tri-Nations champions and second favourites for the whole tournament, who had won 20 of the 29 meetings between the sides. And Ireland were woefully out of form, having had four losses in their tournament warm-up games.

All this stuff is basically the reason that people watch sport. It’s a theatre stage for the unexpected and the heroic.

Advertisements