Saturday, January 29, 2011

Andy Murray v/s Boston Red Sox

Two of the sporting world's greatest droughts belong to places that begin and end with the same letters: Boston and Britain. Boston's ended in 2004; Britain's will end this year.

We put the Red in Union Jack
The Boston Red Sox is one of the top baseball teams in the U.S. However, their turning point came in 1918 when, after winning the World Series, they sold legendary player Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees. For the next 86 years, they didn't win another World Series.

Britain hosts one of the greatest tournaments in the world of tennis: Wimbledon. However, the last men's Grand Slam champion they produced was Fred Perry in 1936. The turning point? He turned professional after winning the U.S. Open that year and no male Briton has ever won any of the top four tournaments in the world since.

The Scot Andy Murray plays Serbian Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open men's final on Sunday. Will he end Britain's drought? No, but he will end it later this year. Here are the reasons why.

I'm shipping up to Boston
The Red Sox got to the final hurdle - the World Series - four times after 1918. They were beaten in 1946 by Enos Slaughter's "mad dash", nearly achieved the "Impossible Dream" in 1967, lost in 1975 despite Carlton Fisk's "waving fair" homer and let the championship slip through Bill Buckner's legs in 1986. They finally won on their fifth attempt in 2004.

I'd like to draw attention to a couple of facts.

  • Boston lost four finals and won the fifth.
  • They lost their third final in 1975, their fourth final in 1986 and ended the drought after 86 years.

Andy Murray is now playing in his third Grand Slam final, after the 2008 U.S. Open and last year's Australian Open. Britain has not had a men's Grand Slam winner in 75 years. Hence, my predictions are as follows.

  • Andy Murray will lose his third final in this, the 75th year of the drought.
  • He will, however, end the drought after 75 years; hence, he will win later this year.

Essentially, Britain are currently operating one level behind Boston and are perfectly poised for history to repeat itself, albeit one rung earlier.

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