With one of the biggest events in the New Zealand wargaming calender about to explode onto the scene in nine short days time, I thought I'd take a moment to reflect on other great sports around the world, the teams and players that in the end - ultimately failed.
Sporting history has been inundated with talented teams and players with the skills to go all the way. Whilst others less so, fighting seemingly insurmountable odds to win - such is the often fickle nature of sport.
The following is in no particular order, sit back and enjoy some of the Greatest Chokers in Sports....
ENGLAND - SOCCER (FOOTBALL)
Consistent quarter finalists and winners in 1966....nothing sums up abject failure like the English football team. Invented the sport and then became really bad at it. Yeah, yeah "Hand of God" or something like that....you'd need the hand of God to make this pack of chokers win the next world cup.
Predictions for Brazil 2014: Brazil 2014!
|A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away....|
Joke: Whats the difference between Rooney and Shrek?
Shrek can save the day!
Since their return from sporting isolation, South Africa have been one of the most consistent teams going into cricket world cups. However....slip ups against the West Indies in 1996 and New Zealand in 2011 (amongst other mishaps) have consigned them to perennial semi-finalists.
Predictions for Cricket World Cup 2015: South Africa to still have the shitiest names in cricket 2015.
|That's right - fuck you South Africa!|
NEW ZEALAND - RUGBY UNION
Why you may ask? Did we not win the World Cup in 2011? Well...yes we did. But that will never, EVER, excuse the AB's from being abject pieces of crap (except in 1995 when we were poisoned: way to go South Africa thanks for making me cry as a child; I loved that team!) in the years in between! Nearly always ranked number one going into the World Cups (except England I think in 2003) and failing dismally.
Personally, I think if we had not hosted the World Cup we never would have won it - and my prediction is that we never will again. Big call? I don't believe the AB's have the mental toughness to win away from home, and as the Cup is never likely to be hosted here again, I shan't think we will see another win in the next 24 years. Many things can be said about a HOME GROUND ADVANTAGE. Just an aside - I'm bitter about '95...the greatest AB's team ever; full of tough bastards and legends of the game - they deserved better.
|"I told them grey wouldn't suit my complexion - did they listen? No! Now I look ghastly in this!"|
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS - AMERICAN FOOTBALL
In 2007 the Patriots were indomitable, with sixteen straight wins before heading into the play-offs. When they reached the Super Bowl they eventually went down to the New York Giants 17-14 finishing with a 18-1 win to loss record. My advice is that they should have taken their pads and helmets off, played like real men and achieved a moral victory over the New York Giants (the gaming equivalent would be not taking an "Internet build list" to a National Team event).
|After the Patriots loss to the Giants, Latisha thought being a crack ho isn't that bad after all - because if you're going to get fucked you may as well be paid for it.|
RORY MCILROY - GOLF
This chap lead the 2011 Masters Tournament from the start of the tournament until midway through the final round, but ended up dropping out of the top ten in an ignominious fashion. It was reported around the world that this tournament would not be remembered for who won this tourney, but the manner in which McIlroy lost it..... nah let's not go there.....
|"Could you please turn the cameras off so I may take a dump in private"|
PETER DUNN - NZ WARHAMMER MASTERS
Five times he went - five times he has come away empty handed. The worm turns and buries itself deep in the soul of this gentleman. Fortunately he gets to live vicariously through the successes of his infinitely more gifted sons - thank God for his wife because they must have gotten their talent from somewhere!
Lamenting over sequential failures at the Masters should leave him looking for answers; psychologists have hypothesised theories such as Explicit Monitoring theory http://psycnet.apa.org/journals/xge/140/3/390/ and Distraction theory http://psycnet.apa.org/journals/bul/76/2/92/
as answers to why expected winners fail. Pete must act, and act soon on this, or else be like the old wolf left behind by his pack, forever lamenting the White Stag of the Masters that he never had the chance to chase down and kill....
Good news! Pete has the chance of redemption at the inaugural New Zealand Team Championship, and fortuitously the stars have aligned and allowed three Warhammer prodigies to partake in his team. However, one must question the choice of captaincy given Peter's track record at Masters events surely?
My prediction: With a massive home ground advantage and "internet build lists" coming hot-off-the- press from the self proclaimed "best-at-anything-we-have-invented" English Warhammer players (I hear the Polish are pretty good too?)....surely....surely they must take out the NZTC....but then again....
|Von Trapps? Seriously? Who would be scared of a team that looked like this?|
FINAL THOUGHTS (for now)
Mr Dixon. Remember the Warhammer Masters in 2011? I picked you up from town after a long flight. Took you into my home, fed you, ferried you to the tournament, kept you warm, safe from harm so you could play your avant garde style of Warhammer that only you could? Remember those times? Do you remember telling me how you were off to uni the following year? Then I said to you...
"Jo. When you're a student, times will be tough. Your diet will consist of two-minute-noodles, you'll live in a shitty flat and you'll barely have enough money for booze".
"Yes" you said. "Go on" you said.
"Well a time may come when you have to do something morally reprehensible in order to survive - something you may never, ever speak of to anyone. Something that will linger on in the darkest recesses of your mind so... you... may... live".
I never, ever, meant for you to stoop to this.