Could today get much better?

Just about everything that I could wish to happen today has happened, getting woken up by the love of my life (that’s you Erin) this afternoon. Both my football teams won. The English rugby team finally showed some form to overcome Ireland, Wales beat the French to win the Grand Slam and take the Six Nations title. Lewis Hamilton qualified on pole position for tomorrows Australian Grand Prix, all I need to do now is win the lottery, fingers crossed!

Let’s start with football and Plymouth Argyle. The Pilgrims went to Ashton Gate and against all expectations came away with all three points. Plymouth had a mini-crisis in the run up to this game as Plymouth had no senior goalkeeper available after Luke McCormick’s suspension and Romain Larrieu still recovering from an operation. But help came from an unlikely place, Ian Holloway’s Leicester loaned us Rab Douglas for the tie. And the former Celtic keeper did an excellent job stepping into the breach and would have had a clean sheet if it weren’t for Easter handling in the 74th minute. Rory Fallon has answered his critics in style by scoring twice in the space of 15 minutes, just before half time and again in the 59th minute. Fallon has had a tough time and many including myself have been questioning his place in the Argyle squad as for a striker he hasn’t exactly been prolific in front of goal. I think that Argyle are definitely lacking in the striker department, our 500,000 pound striker Steve MacLean has been disappointing in front of goal, but has been an excellent playmaker, he seems to be more of an attacking midfielder than a striker. But non-the-less this 1 – 2 win means Argyle are back in the play-off positions but teams around us still have games in hand. It’s odd how we lose to teams we really shouldn’t like relegation candidates Scunthorpe United, then beat top of the league Bristol City away from home four days later. But I don’t care, the play-off dream is still alive, here’s to a good result on Saturday at Home Park against Watford, a little revenge for last season’s FA Cup defeat by The Hornets maybe?

Liverpool extended their premiership winning streak to five games beating Reading 2 – 1 at Anfield. But Liverpool being Liverpool, they couldn’t do it the easy way having to come from behind to take the three points. The Reds went behind in the 4th minute when a slick Reading training ground set-piece caught Liverpool napping. Javier Mascherano cancelled out Reading’s lead 15 minutes later with a Gerrardesque rocket from 20 yards out. it was 2 – 1 just after half time when Steven Gerrard whipped in a ferocious cross that Fernando Torres met with his head from close range. With the exception of the the early scare Liverpool looked on top all game long and probably should have won by more but Reading did well to restrict Liverpool’s chances. The Reds have pulled clear of fellow Merseysiders Everton but The Toffees face a tough trip to Craven Cottage tomorrow, c’mon Fulham!

The English national rugby union team finally managed to show the form we expect beating the Irish 33 – 10 but had the worse possible start to the game. Rob Kearney crossed the try line early in the first half alarmingly easily, Ronan O’Gara converted, then a few minute later O’Gara kicked a perfect penalty to put the Englishmen 10 points down. The came the fightback, Debutee Danny Cipriani lead the way with his first international points with a penalty. Paul Sackey added another five points when he crossed the try line minutes later and Cipriani again was on target with the conversion. The score now 10 – 10 England were looking the better team and proved that with yet another fine penalty kick from Cipriani as England went in at half time on the accent 13 – 10 up. Then in the second half, the English ran away with it adding a further two tries from Mathew Tait and Jamie Noon, both converted by Cipriani, and the debutee added a further ttwo penalty scores taking his scoring tally to 18 for the game. So a comfortable win for the Englishmen in the end and because other results went their way finished second in the Six Nations tournament.

The Welsh comprehensively beat the French in the Six Nations decider, the first half was very tight as neither team could get a decisive break playing the kicking game with the Welsh coming out slightly ahead at half time. Then in the second half France imploded allowing the Welshmen to run riot culminating in Shane Williams crossing the line for the try he needed to become Wales all time top try scorer and Stephen Jones duly converted. Martyn Williams added another try shortly afterwards which was converted by Jones. Wales ran out comfortably 29 – 12 winners after a shaky first half performance to claim the Grand Slam, so a good tournament for the Welsh, claiming the Triple Crown, Grand Slam and Six Nations title, not bad for a team that was embarrassed in the world cup last year.

And finally the new F1 season kicked off yesterday in Melbourne and Lewis Hamilton came out top of the pile in the first qualifying session of the season. Hamilton edged out BMW’s Robert Kubica by just under two tenths of a second with new team mate Heikki Kovalainen a further two tenths behind. Felipe Massa was a distant fourth in the sole Ferrari to make it into the top 10 shoot out. Kimi Raikkonen will start from 16th after a technical issue with his car meant that he couldn’t take part in qualifying 2. So Kimi’s title defence has gotten off to a rocky start but we have seen a Ferrari win from further back before so I am not discounting him pulling it out of the bag. Former world champion Fernando Alonso will start from 12th after not making the grade in qualifying 2. Hamilton must be red hot favourite to take the win in Australia, but in F1 you never know what’s going to happen and it’s even more unpredictable when you factor in the lack of traction control. The lack of TC has made it much more spectacular to watch seeing the cars sliding around pushing the limits the car!

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