New Zealand’s victory in the women’s World Cup rugby union competition on Sunday — held in their own country — should be welcomed if only because it signals a triumph for the way the game should be played: fast, running rugby, which showcases the players’ skills and is attractive to watch.
The Black Ferns, as the team is known, were up against England, a team of huge players, whose main skill harks back to the 1960s: rolling mauls and a slow grinding down of their opponents. It is the worst way to try and win.
And it is the last style that will inspire anyone to watch the game. It is a defeatist attitude to a game that requires the skills of a soccer player and also those of a track athlete. It is a poor tribute to a game where communication between players, most of the time without a word spoken, is simply surprising. Continue reading “Black Ferns’ World Cup win is best outcome for women’s rugby”
In August, no doubt, Serena Williams will turn up at the US Open, the last tennis Grand Slam event for 2021, in the hope that she will be able to, at last, equal Australian Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles.
The odds are stacked against Williams, given that she has been unable to win a Grand Slam event since January 2017. That year, she won the Australian Open.
After that, she has played in 18 Grand Slam events and been unable to win any of them. In some, she has even managed to make it to the final, but then stumbled at the last hurdle.
Continue reading “Serena Williams has become an object of pity”
A year and nine months after she founded NOW Australia claiming it was meant to focus on the problem of women being sexually harassed in the workplace, former TV newsreader Tracey Spicer is once again avoiding public appearances in order, she claims, to focus on her own mental health.
Spicer has retreated like this on earlier occasions too: she disappeared after actor John Jarratt was cleared of harassment charges and also when actor Geoffrey Rush won a case against the Daily Telegraph that had accused him of sexual harassment.
After a series of incidents that can only lead to one conclusion — Spicer’s embrace of the #MeToo movement was meant more to embellish her own image than anything else — the women’s movement in Australia has been put on the back foot and left wondering how it will recover from the Spicer show.
Continue reading “A small step for Australian women, a giant leap for Tracey Spicer”
Serena Williams has fallen flat on her face again in her bid to equal Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles. This time Williams’ loss was to Canadian teenager Bianca Andreescu and what makes it better is that she lost in straight sets, 6-3, 7-5.
Andreescu, 19, is a raw hand at the game; she has never played in the main draw of the US Open before. Last year, ranked 208, she was beaten in the first round by Olga Danilovic.
Continue reading “Serena Williams loses another Grand Slam final”
One of the many big-noters in India has announced her return to the literary scene with a novel about the uprising in Kashmir. Coming 20 years after her only other effort, Arundhati Roy’s 2017 publication has already received enough hype to make one puke.
Since her book The God of Small Things was surprisingly awarded the Man Booker Prize in 1997, Roy has been involved in activism, written essays and numerous articles.
One has to be grateful that she did not attempt a second novel. Her first effort was terrible; author Carmen Callil, chair of the 1996 Booker jury, pronounced Roy’s work “execrable”, and said it should never have reached the shortlist.
Continue reading “The time has arrived for a literary fraud to resurface”
When Serena Williams loses, we should all rejoice. And more so when the loss comes as she is heading for a major achievement.
Serena is so wrapped up in herself that she was describing the calendar Grand Slam which she was trying to achieve as a “Serena Slam”. Can anyone be more egotistical?
Thankfully for all humanity, an Italian player by the name of Flavia Pennetta got in the way of Serena’s ambitions and dumped her from the US Open.
Continue reading “Serena Williams has lost and we should all rejoice”
THESE days political correctness has grown by leaps and bounds; people who generally speak out tend to muzzle themselves in order not to offend some group or the other.
It means that often we have to stomach stupid statements without responding, to point out that the speaker/writer is clearly delusional. Or putting forward a silly point of view that has no merit.
Some time back, a TV presenter from Sky News, Tracy Spicer, gave a TED talk in which she blamed men for the fact that she had to doll up for her job. The TED talks have an aura about them; you only have to give one to be considered an intellectual.
Continue reading “Political correctness has reached dizzy heights”
THERE is an unspoken convention among most people that one does not speak ill of the dead; in the Sinhalese language, there is even a separate word to describe this.
Not that one needs to remind people of this; most people tend to be politically correct when a man or woman dies and refrain from speaking the truth. Even when Richard Milhous Nixon died, most people refrained from describing him as a crook – even though that was the mildest term one could use to characterise a thug like him.
A week or so ago, Charlotte Dawson, a TV personality, was found dead in her flat in Sydney. Dawson, who was approaching 50, made a name for herself by trying to take on social media trolls and outing them. She was prone to fits of depression and ended up in hospital for her troubles.
Continue reading “Dawson was too fragile for what she tried to do”
“But I require more for myself. I need to be stimulated more than that, you know?” – Lara Bingle on her relationship with Michael Clarke Source
LARA Bingle is the Paris Hilton of Australia. She is a silly empty-headed woman who uses her looks to get from A to B and has done nothing to merit any kind of publicity – apart from periodically ensuring that she bares a bit in public.
However, when she hooked up with the Australian cricketer Michael Clarke in 2007, she got a good deal of the spotlight. Clarke was the captain-in-waiting at the time and that post is the second most important in the country after the prime minister.
Hence Bingle was often in the public gaze. She made the most of it.
Continue reading “Lara Bingle says Michael Clarke could not ‘stimulate’ her”
ONE of the characteristics of the internet age is the lack of thought that is evident in people’s reaction to events.
Somehow everyone feels the need to react quickly. This may well be due to the fact that we have grown used to instantaneous gratification.
So many things that once took a long time to obtain or see, are now available at the click of a mouse. It creates a false sense of expectation and also a sense that life can always be lived at that pace.
Thus it is not surprising to see the reactions to the article by actress Angelina Jolie in the The New York Times, announcing that she had undergone a double mastectomy so that she could reduce the chance that she would die of breast cancer.
Continue reading “Giving women false hope”