Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Some odd sporting records and achievements

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Roy Riegels played for the University of California, Berkeley football team, the Golden Bears, from 1927 to 1929, becoming an All-American and serving as team captain for the Bears in 1929. 

On January 1, 1929, the Golden Bears faced the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, Midway through the second quarter, 30 yards out from the Yellow Tech line, Riegels picked up a fumbled ball and ran, And ran. It was like that scene in Forrest Gump where Forrest is given the ball and told to run, which he does, right out of the stadium. The crowd was on its feet and loud. Still Roy ran. Eventually he was stopped 3 yards from the line . . . his own line, having been stopped by his teammate Benny Lom. The Bears decided to punt but the punt was blocked and resulted in a safety, giving Tech a 2 – 0 lead. They ended up winning 8-7. Riegels was so mortified and distressed that he didn’t want to go out after the second quarter but his coach convinced him and he is often used as an inspiration for coming back from adversity. 

According to Riegels: “I was running toward the sidelines when I picked up the ball, I started to turn to my left toward Tech's goal. Somebody shoved me and I bounded right off into a tackler. In pivoting to get away from him, I completely lost my bearings.” 

Nonetheless he was known thereafter as Roy “Wrong Way” Riegels. 
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French rugby player Gaston Vareilles was selected to play for France against Scotland in 1910, i]his international debut. When the team train stopped at Lyon, Vareilles hopped off to get a baguette at the station snack bar. Unfortunately for him the queue was so long that by the time he returned to the platform, the train was disappearing into the distance. He was never picked for his country again. C’est la vie. 
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During a cricket game in Kalgoorlie, Australia, in the 1970s, batsman Stan Dawson was hit by a delivery which ignited a box of matches he kept in his hip pocket. As he tried to beat down the flames with his hands, he was stumped out by the other team. 
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Rafael Gómez Ortega, (1882 - 1960) also known as El Gallo ("the rooster") was an early twentieth century bullfighter. He came from a family of famous bullfighters, including his matador father, Fernando Gómez García and matador younger brother, José Gómez Ortega. He is today remembered for several of his unique fighting techniques such as the espantada - or "sudden flight", which simply consisted of him fleeing when the bull entered the ring. Other techniques included fighting bulls from a chair. He is remembered by the phrase, "all of us artists have bad days." His fights were considered amusement to the audience, and he was brought out of retirement seven times because of this "sportsmanship". In his last fight, in October 1918, he claimed he spared the bull because it "winked" at him. The audience again felt this was hilarious, but Ortega's brother, José (also known as "Joselito El Gallo"), concerned about the family honour, hopped into the ring and killed the bull.


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