Tuesday, 30 October 2012

1984/85 FA Cup: First round

With the first round proper of the FA Cup starting this week, it is time for another dose of 80s nostalgia, as we look back on the equivalent stage of the competition back in 1984. A round full of shocks and thrashings, a sacking, a trip to a coal mine, police escorts, and many other FA Cup style quirks that make me yearn for the good old days.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Sporting what ifs of the 1980s

The life of That1980sSportsBlogger has produced enough what if moments to fill a blog or two, albeit probably not that interesting to anyone who doesn't know me (how does that differ from this blog I hear you ask). What if I hadn't gone to that nightclub in Northampton on that fateful evening of December 1, 1995, where unbeknown to me, the future Mrs That1980sSportsBlogger was located? What if my parents had decided to move to New Zealand when I was barely out of nappies, as they were carefully considering? What if my dad had been a Tottenham supporter? All of those what ifs, and in particular the last one, are quite scary to comprehend, as my life as I know it today would be very different indeed.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

1987: Allan Lamb's final over heroics

Following the England cricket team had been a less than joyous affair after my 1985 Ashes introduction. The relationship between me and the team was distant, as the West Indies crushed us 5-0 in the Caribbean, and we followed this up with home series defeats against India and New Zealand.

In less than a year England had gone from Ashes winners to a shambles, replaced David Gower as skipper with Mike Gatting, seen their star all-rounder (Ian Botham) banned for 63 days in the summer for puffing on the funny fags, and used 25 players in the process, as England's selectors tried hopelessly to come up with a winning solution.

Little wonder then that when the 1986-87 Ashes tour began, Martin Johnson, writing for The Independent stated that "There are only three things wrong with the English team - they can't bat, they can't bowl, and they can't field." Some felt that was being a little kind.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Famous for five minutes: Albert Kidd

Mention the name Albert Kidd to any football fan in the cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh and you will get a variety of responses. Speak to a Celtic or Hibs fan and it is odds on that a broad grin will spread across the face of your new found friend, as their eyes glaze over in a nostalgic way, remembering a joyous occasion. But tread carefully elsewhere. Say those two simple words in the maroon section of Edinburgh and you will not be so popular. For the reasons behind this we have to go all the way back to May 3, 1986, a day of joy and celebration for Celtic, tears and despair for Hearts, and a massive shot of Schadenfreude for any Hibs supporters fortunate enough to be alive on that memorable day.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

1980 US Masters: Seve Ballesteros

Realistically there is only one sport I can write about this week. I know that golf, and in particular the 1987 Ryder Cup, was the subject of my blog last week, but the events at Medinah, and the subsequent dose of delight it has provided to us European fans, only provided me with one option: a Seve related blog. Europe's fine win was a fitting tribute to the great man, his spirit evident in such a startling fightback that, just thinking about it, gives me an instant bout of goosebumps. The man who did so much to establish European golf worldwide would have been so proud of the Miracle of Medinah, so I thought it appropriate to rewind to a time when Seve claimed Europe's first US Masters title in 1980, the catalyst to so many European triumphs that followed.