Good Week/Bad Week

Jenny Jones made GB Winter Olympic history while Kevin Pietersen's glittering England cricketing career came to a shuddering end. We pick out this week's winners and losers...

By Steve Pass and Raz Mirza.   Last Updated: 10/02/14 3:18pm

  • Share:

Sky Bet

Another action-packed week of sport has come and gone which saw history being made by GB snowboarder Jenny Jones at the Winter Olympics.

There was a stunning opening to the new season of Premier League Darts as Michael van Gerwen whitewashed Phil Taylor, while in the Six Nations, England bounced back from their heart-breaking defeat in France with a comprehensive victory in Scotland.

The fall-out from England's failed Ashes tour continued with the controversial ending of Kevin Pietersen's international career, and in Super League, champions Wigan suffered a shock opening defeat in the defence of their title.

We review the week below...

Good Week

Jenny Jones

Jenny Jones claimed Great Britain's first-ever Winter Olympics medal on snow when she took bronze in the women's snowboard slopestyle at Sochi.

The 33-year-old from Bristol produced a flawless second run of 87.25 to move up the rankings after sitting just fifth following the first round.

It was good enough to put Jones - the oldest entrant in the final - in the gold medal position at that stage and while American Jamie Anderson (95.25) and Finland's Enni Rukajarvi (92.50) managed to surpass her, Jones was assured the remaining spot on the podium when Austrian Anna Gasser, who had set the best score in qualifying and was the last competitor to go, stumbled when trying to land a jump.

"When the last girl went, I just went 'Oh my God, oh my God, I am on the podium'," said a jubilant Jones

Michael van Gerwen

The reigning Premier League champion got his defence off to the best possible start in Liverpool with a 7-0 thrashing of Phil Taylor.

Having undergone a dramatic recent weight loss and using new darts, Taylor had no answer to the reigning world champion and world number one, who opened the scoring against the throw before checking out 121 to double the lead.

The Dutchman never looked back and completed his win with double 10 to leave the Echo Arena crowd in a state of shock.

He told Sky Sports: "All the pressure was on my shoulders, I was the favourite, but I played so well and I can't remember anyone beating him 7-0. When Phil picks up new darts it can take him a few weeks to get used to them and that wasn't Phil. He will be back next week."

England rugby team

England reignited their Six Nations title hopes with a battling 20-0 success over Scotland at Murrayfield to lift the Calcutta Cup.

Tries in either half from Luther Burrell and Mike Brown sealed the victory - the perfect response after the heartbreak of the late 26-24 loss to France.

Both France and Ireland won again to make it two wins out of two but England coach Stuart Lancaster is in good spirits for the task ahead, with a clash against Ireland at Twickerham next up for his side.

He said: "I actually thought we made a statement against France last weekend and we were disappointed not to have won. I'm pleased that we've had a good win and that can take us into two massive home games. Playing at Twickenham is a big deal for us, so it's good to win now, to take us into the next game with confidence. I think points difference might come into the Championship equation now. If Ireland beat us obviously it's theirs to win."

George Coetzee

South Africa's George Coetzee ended his long wait for a European Tour title as he clinched a three-shot victory at the Joburg Open on Sunday.

The 27-year-old from Pretoria had notched 24 top-10 finishes on the European circuit and finally broke his duck as he came from four shots back to emerge triumphant on home soil.

He played his way into contention with a faultless front nine that contained four birdies. At that point he was still a shot behind the final pairing of Thomas Aiken and Justin Walters, but they would both drop a shot at the par-five eighth and when Coetzee made another gain at the tenth he moved into a lead he would never surrender.

"I've been waiting a while and have actually been trying to play it down this week (winning). I'm very happy," he said afterwards, before adding with a smile: "I get to share this with my family and friends and my caddy. It was my mum's birthday yesterday and I wanted to win it for her because I forgot to get her a present."

Bad Week

Arsenal

Liverpool enhanced their top four aspirations and made a mockery of Arsenal's hopes of mounting a genuine challenge for the Premier League title with a thumping 5-1 victory at Anfield.

A four-goal blitz inside the opening 20 minutes from Brendan Rodgers' side effectively put the game beyond the disbelieving Londoners.

Defender Martin Skrtel scored twice in the opening 10 minutes before Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge gave the home side an unassailable 4-0 lead before the break.

Sterling netted a fifth before Mikel Arteta's consolation from the penalty spot, but the day belonged to the red-hot Merseysiders who now find themselves six points behind leaders Chelsea.

Are they now in with a genuine chance of landing their first league title since 1990? And what of Arsenal? Manchester United, Liverpool and Bayern Munich to come in the next 10 days. Their season could well rest on these next three crucial games.

David Moyes

Things seem to be going from bad to worse for Manchester United manager David Moyes and his under-performing squad as he marked a new low for his first season in charge.

After Robin van Persie and Michael Carrick had put the Red Devils 2-1 up at Old Trafford in their latest Premier League match against rock-bottom Fulham, things seemed to be looking up.

However, just as they looked poised to snatch the points Darren Bent scored a stoppage-time equaliser to salvage a draw for the struggling Cottagers.

The home side flung a record 81 crosses into the opposition's box against a Fulham defence that had conceded 53 goals in their previous 24 league matches.

Moyes' side have dropped 18 points at home this season and on their travels they have lost to Liverpool, Manchester City, Stoke and Chelsea.

The draw leaves them nine points adrift of the Champions League qualification places and 15 behind Premier League leaders Chelsea.

Perhaps a season without European football will allow Moyes the chance to rebuild his squad, but will United's loyal supporters continue to accept such underwhelming displays?

Kevin Pietersen

Pietersen's England career was brought to an end on Tuesday after he was omitted from the squad for the tour of the Caribbean and the ICC World Twenty20 with the batsman himself confirming he would not play for England again.

The announcement brought to an end to a controversial international career of undeniably one of the country's most gifted batsman which featured plenty of bumps in the road.

The ECB released a statement on Sunday raising questions about the lack of trust in their leading run-scorer across all formats.

Former captain Andrew Strauss believes his career was ended because of a breakdown in trust and said efforts to reintegrate the South Africa-born batsman into the team after he was found to have sent derogatory text messages about Strauss to opposition players were "a little like marriage counselling".

But Andrew Flintoff feels Pietersen was made a scapegoat for their Ashes failure with players and officials seeking to defend their own positions by putting the focus on others.

Everybody seems to have an opinion on 'KP', but there is no doubt about it, it will be sad to not see the 33-year-old playing for England again.

Wigan Warriors

Reigning champions Wigan produced a below-par performance as they were humbled on the opening night of the new Super League season by Huddersfield.

Winger Jermaine McGillvary grabbed a hat-trick of tries in a comfortable 24-8 victory at the DW Stadium.

They will now travel to Australia to prepare for their World Club Challenge clash with Sydney Roosters under a cloud after a disappointing start to their domestic title defence.

The Warriors' misery was in sharp contrast to the joy experienced by the Giants, who did the double over Wigan on their way to topping the table in 2013.

Coach Shaun Wane admitted his team's surprise defeat was "tough to swallow". "We got outmuscled," he said. "The best team won. Huddersfield wanted it more."

  • Share:

Related

Most Popular

Features

Kevin Davies' Blog

Kevin Davies' Blog

Kevin Davies blogs on the news that hot-shot striker Joe Garner has committed his future to Preston.

Jeff: I haven't missed Balotelli

Jeff: I haven't missed Balotelli

Jeff Stelling hasn't missed Mario Balotelli and ponders how Brendan Rodgers will fit him in the squad.

Nev: Who'll draw first blood?

Nev: Who'll draw first blood?

Man City and Liverpool will look to lay down a marker when they meet on MNF, says Gary Neville.