- November 10 down the years
A Great Britain whitewash
The end of an era that lasted almost 100 years. Great Britain's rugby league team completed their first whitewash since 1993. They'd already won the series by hammering New Zealand 44-0 in the second Test (November 3), but had to work harder for victory in Wigan. They went 12-0 down after only 11 minutes, and 18-year-old Chase Stanley scored two tries on his debut for the Kiwis - but Britain scored four in ten minutes, then won the match 28-22 when Danny McGuire ran onto Sean O'Loughlin's kick from deep inside Britain's own half. It was their last home match before splitting into separate countries for good.
The last fight Henry Cooper ever won. He was 36 by then, and visibly vulnerable to big punches - but he still knew too much for Spaniard José Urtain. At the Empire Pool, Wembley, Cooper won the European heavyweight title for the third time, his persistent left jab making a mess of the champion's face. Urtain was very strong, and he could dig. He'd won most of his fights in the first two rounds, and he regained the European title by destroying Britain's Jack Bodell the following year. But his defence was rudimentary to say the least, and Cooper drove a coach and horses through it with his left hand. 'Enery had prominent bones over his eyes, so he suffered from cuts throughout his career, including one in the first round here. But Urtain was more badly cut when the fight was stopped in the ninth round. Cooper had one more fight left in him, against an up-and-coming British boy who never matched his popularity (March 16).
The shortest international rugby career of any Six Nations player. Gareth Edwards was so good and so strong that he didn't miss a match in his 53-cap career for Wales. So other top scrum-halves like Chico Hopkins and Clive Shell won only one cap each, both as replacements. Hopkins came on when Edwards was injured at Twickenham in 1970, and turned a match against England on its head. But Shell was never needed. Edwards didn't miss a minute throughout the rest of his international career - until today, when he was brought off in the very last one to allow Shell to put 'and Wales' after his name. Hooker Bobby Windsor, another new cap, scored one of the three tries in a 24-0 win over Australia in Cardiff.
Talking of notable debuts, in 2001 Roland Reid scored a try with his first touch in international rugby, a minute after coming on as a replacement against Tonga at Murrayfield. Another new cap, fly-half Gordon Ross, kicked 23 points in Scotland's 43-20 win. Reid played in only one more international, the defeat by Argentina a week later.
Down in Twickenham, world champions Australia were losing to England - or rather to Jonny Wilkinson. The Wallabies scored the only two tries of the match, but only after Wilko's boot had left them 15-0 down at half-time. He eventually scored all of England's points, landing five penalties and two drop goals in a 21-15 win.
Meanwhile a disappointing Wales were well beaten by Argentina, who won 30-16 in Cardiff. Prolific fly-half Felipe Contepomi scored in every which way but loose: 25 points through a try, conversion, drop goal, and five penalties.
At the Stade de France, South Africa lost 20-10 to a team with eight new caps. Two of them kicked five penalties: fly-half François Gelez four, centre Damien Traille the other.
In Treviso, Argentinian-born fly-half Diego Domínguez equalled a record he already shared. In Italy's 66-10 win over Fiji, he scored 29 points, which matched the national record. The opposition made it easy for him. Waisale Serevi scored all of Fiji's points, including five from a try - but he was one of three Fijians who visited the sin bin, while their captain Alifereti Doviverata was sent off. All that indiscipline led to seven penalty goals for Domínguez, as well as seven tries for seven other Italians. When Domínguez scored 29 the first time, it was in a more important fixture: Italy's Six Nations debut (February 5, 2000).
Martina Navrátilová equalled Chris Evert's record by winning a professional singles title for the 157th time. She did it the hard way, with one of her most impressive victories. In the final of a Virginia Slims tournament in Oakland, California, she won 6-3 3-6 6-3 against 17-year-old Monica Šeles, who was less than half her age but had won three grand slam singles titles that year, beating Navrátilová in the final of the French Open. Martina eventually won 167 singles titles and 177 in doubles, more than any other man or woman.
On the same day, Cleveland Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar broke an NFL record by throwing his 295th pass in a row without an interception. The sort of stat that matters in American football, and an impressive sequence. He overtook the 294 set by Green Bay legend Bart Starr in 1965. But he couldn't win Cleveland the match. They scored 30 points in the first half but didn't cross halfway in the second and lost 32-20 to the Philadelphia Eagles when Jim McMahon's pass found Calvin Williams for a touchdown with five minutes left. Kosar's run of unstoppable passes eventually reached 308, a record which still stands.
The difference between Marvin Hagler and Roberto Duran. One was a genuine all-time great, the other was Marvin Hagler. Adding 'Marvelous' to your name by deed poll doesn't mean that's what you are. Yes, he dominated the middleweight division after winning the world title from Britain's Alan Minter (September 27, 1980), but the only great boxers he faced came up from the lower weights. He lost to Sugar Ray Leonard in his last fight (April 6, 1987), and struggled in tonight's title defence in Las Vegas. When Hagler's eye was cut, he was lucky Duran wasn't strong enough to finish him off: Roberto started life as a lightweight, two entire divisions lighter, taking a world title from Scotland's finest (June 26, 1972).
A really great middleweight had his last fight in 1965. In the four years since he'd last fought for a version of the world title, Sugar Ray Robinson had taken part in 43 bouts. But he was 44 by now, and he knew it was time to retire when he was floored by Joey Archer in Pittsburgh tonight: it was only the second time Archer had knocked anyone down in his 45 fights! Sugar Ray recovered from that blow in the fourth round to have a very good sixth, and although he was well beaten on points he gave a very good account of himself as always. He lost only 19 of his 200 pro bouts, most of them when he was way past his best and none of them inside the distance. One of the very best boxers of all time, unbeaten as world welterweight champion, he regained the middleweight title from a British boxer in 1951 (September 12) and won it for the fifth time in 1958 (March 25).
Excluding overtime, the most points scored by one team in an NBA game is 173, by the Boston Celtics against the Minneapolis Lakers in 1959 - and the Phoenix Suns against the Denver Nuggets today. The Suns' 107 points in the first half set another record.
Another rugby union defeat for Wales at home to a 'minor' country. All their points in Cardiff came from the boot of Neil Jenkins. Three of his eight penalty goals gave Wales a 9-6 lead at half-time. But Canada's captain Ian Stuart scored a try with 16 minutes left. Jenkins kicked three of his penalties to put Wales 24-19, but impressive lock forward Al Charron scored a try in the last few seconds. Gareth Rees had kicked four penalties of his own; now his conversion won the match 26-24.