This is the first of our 2014 Sportsfreak Sporting awards outlining the good, the bad and the ugly of New Zealand Sport during 2014
The Best of….
Mike Hesson, Brendon McCullum and the BLACKCAPS ©.
Finally this team is simply giving what all New Zealand Cricket fans want, namely their best effort every time they go on the park regardless of it being T20 ODI or a Test. Selections and tactics appear well thought out and consistent and while most Cricket teams will always have a set of complex egos to stroke this doesn’t seem to be hampering the team the way it has so many times in the past. Expertly led by McCullum it appears Hesson is the Puppeteer behind the scenes that seems to be making it all work. Keep it up boys.
Steven Adams and the Oklahoma City Thunder.
No silly outfits, sunglasses worn inside or huge entourage for Rotorua-Steve. He’s about as Kiwi as Fred Dagg and doesn’t mind letting others know about it (famously calling out Golden State Warriors Superstar Andre Iguodala for an ill-advised Tweet criticising the Tall Blacks Haka at the recent Basketball World Cup). Into the second year of a Rookie contract utilising a very good situation in OKC (after which the real money will flow), Adams is backing up a solid Rookie year and making all the NZ Hoops Journo’s who said he would be D-League material look rather foolish.
Yes THE KIWIS ! Rescued New Zealand Rugby League (and Coach Stephen Kearney) by finally managing to defeat Australia (twice) in the recent four Nations tournament which was a resounding success, finally breathing life into an International game which was almost terminal. Who thought 20,000 people would line up to watch a game of Rugby League in Whangarei ?!
Our ‘minor sports’ that just keep on trucking
Yes, in here are all the Rowers (in particular Bond and Murray), Motorsport people, Surfers, Softballers and Hockey Players that keep flying the flag and competing/winning despite limited funding and often even less media coverage (in particular if the All Blacks are about to play, are playing or have just played a game). Nice work
people! anonymous sportsmen and women.
The ITM Cup
Despite the best efforts of the NZRFU, this competition just keeps out-pointing Super Rugby, continuing to produce a new batch of stars and giving teams outside the main centers their 10 week window in the sun. 25,000 and a packed Stadium for the final in New Plymouth says it all. The NZRFU simply HAS to step in and help repair and re-engerise this competition for the long term good of the game in this country.
Look for later in the week our “worst” list including Radio Sport (which remains generally
ghastly good between 5.30 & 6pm on a Friday night), Golf continuing to be treated as a real sport (it’s a hobby people), Super Rugby (presented by yawny mcyawnalot) and a few other “obvioush” ones like half time player interviews.