• October 5 down the years

Drugs cheat Jones pleads guilty

Marion Jones and Tim Montgomerie © Getty Images

The day Marion Jones admitted in public what everyone privately knew. That she'd taken drugs before the 2000 Olympics, in which she won five medals (September 27). In a court in New York State, she pleaded guilty to two counts of obstructing justice, including lying to federal investigators. She'd always been tainted by association. Her former husband, world champion shot putter CJ (Cottrell) Hunter, had once been found with 1000 times the normal level of nandrolone in his system. Another of Jones's partners, Tim Montgomery, had his world record in the 100 metres deleted after admitting taking testosterone and human growth hormone. When Victor Conte, founder of the Balco drugs factory, accused Jones of using drugs, she filed a £12 million lawsuit against him. Laugh out loud. A week after her public admission, the IOC stripped her of all five Olympic medals. She spent seven months in jail for perjury and cheque fraud.

The last time golfers from Britain & Ireland won the Ryder Cup without help from the rest of Europe. And the only time the Americans lost between 1933 and 1985 (September 15). It started well enough for the USA here at Lindrick in Yorkshire. After the first day's foursomes, they led 3-1 and another easy win was in prospect. But American golf was in a slight trough between the era of Ben Hogan and Sam Snead and the arrival of Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, and the rest. So the British Isles boys still had a chance in the singles. But no-one could have predicted that they'd win six of the eight matches and halve another one. Not just win but win easily. There were 7 & 6 wins for Dai Rees over Ed Furgol and Christy O'Connor senior over Dow Finsterwald; Bernard Hunt won by 6&5 against Doug Ford, Peter Mills 5&3 against Jack Burke - four Americans who all won at least one Major. The final score was 7½-4½. In his seventh Ryder Cup, twenty years after his first, Rees was on the winning side at last. And he was still there four years later (October 14).

On the same day in 1900, two of golf's Great Triumvirate crossed the Atlantic to take on the Americans and ex-pat Scots. Harry Vardon (born May 9 1870) and JH Taylor (March 19 1871) won the British Open eleven times between them. Taylor won it for the third time this year (June 7), eight shots ahead of Vardon, who was the defending champion. At the US Open in Chicago, their positions were reversed. And they were so much better than the locals that Taylor finished seven shots clear - in second place. He led the field with a first-round 76, but Vardon took seven shots off him in the next two. They played all four rounds in two days, and Vardon could afford an 80 in the fourth and still win by two strokes. He was the first player ever to win two different Majors.

Gold medals for two British athletes at the Commonwealth Games.

Daley Thompson defended his Commonwealth crown © Getty Images

The decathlon was a gentle warm-down for Daley Thompson, who retained the title he'd won in 1978. At the European Championships the previous month, competition from Jürgen Hingsen had driven him to a world record of 8743 points (September 8). He didn't need anything like that here in Brisbane. His first two events put him in command as always - a 100 metres in 10.66 seconds, then 7.71 in the long jump, way better than anyone else - and he scored well in every event on his way to a Games record of 8424, over 400 ahead of the silver medallist. Thompson won his third Commonwealth gold in 1986.

Gold in the shot putt was particularly satisfying for Judy Oakes. She threw a Games record 17.39 metres in the second round, only for Australia's defending champion Gael Martin, the former Gael Mulhall, to reply immediately with 17.68. Oakes had won bronze behind Martin four years earlier, but she was throwing in anger today: Martin had just returned from a drugs ban which had originally been for life. Oakes reached 17.78 metres in the third round, which would have been enough to win even without her 17.92 in the fifth. The day before, Martin had won silver in the discus behind Scotland's Meg Ritchie. Mulhall won gold in both events in 1986, beating a furious Oakes into second place in the shot. Our Judy eventually won a record six medals at the Commonwealth Games, including a third gold in 1998 (September 18).

Scotland beat Japan in the rugby union World Cup. Nothing gobsmacking about that - or prop forward David Milne coming on as a sub to win his only cap. But he completed a rare trio: three brothers capped by the same country in the front row. Iain Milne, also a prop, won 44 caps, hooker Kenny 39 plus one for the British Lions. Another set of brothers scored tries in today's match at Murrayfield: Gavin and Scott Hastings in a 47-9 win after Japan trailed only 17-9 at half-time. Gavin also kicked five conversions and two penalty goals. Yukio Motoki won the first of his record 79 caps for Japan.

In another group at the same World Cup, Italy also struggled in the first half, leading only 9-3 against the USA at Otley. But they eventually won 30-9, their Argentinian fly-half Diego Domínguez contributing 14 points. The best of Italy's four tries was scored by his half-back partner Ivan Francescato, who sidestepped several players on his way. Francescato went one better than the Milnes of Scotland, having three brothers who also played for Italy. Ivan died young in 1999.

Billy Mitchell became the first billiards player to make a break of 1000 in public. At the Black Horse Hotel in central London, he reached 1055 in a match against William Peall - almost half a million less than the record set in 1907 (July 6).

At Den Bosch in Holland, France were appearing in their first Fed Cup final, the hosts in their first since 1968. Holland's main weapon was the big serve of Brenda Schultz-McCarthy, but it didn't do all the damage they needed. In the opening singles against Sandrine Testud, Schultz dropped the first set but won the second and Holland seemed about to take the lead. But Testud won the third 6-3 to snatch a point Holland had counted on. It looked easy for France after that. Mary Pierce won two Grand Slam singles titles. She thrashed Miriam Oremans, then made it one set all against Schultz, and the French were nearly there. But big Brenda redeemed herself by winning the third set 6-4, and Oremans recovered from losing the first 6-0 to Testud. At one set all, the final was in the balance. Then Testud took the deciding set 6-3 to win the Cup, and France added the doubles to make the final score 4-1.

The first World Series game to be broadcast on radio. The New York Yankees won it 3-0 against the Giants from across town. Two clubs from the same city made this the first World Series to be played at a single venue: the Polo Grounds. Babe Ruth hit the first of his 15 World Series runs - but his Yankees lost to the Giants by four games to two.

The most points by one player in a rugby union match for Romania, who beat Spain 67-6 at home on the way to qualifying for the next World Cup. Ionut Tofan compiled his 32 points by converting eight of Romania's nine tries, scoring two himself, and adding a pair of penalty goals. Manuel Cascara kicked two penalties on his debut for Spain.