It's Friday again, so it's time to take a look at the sporting weekend ahead; and there's plenty to look forward to!
The action starts in earnest this evening, with what will hopefully be the weekend's highlight. The NZ Breakers take to the court against the Cairns Taipans in the ANBL championship decider at the North Shore Events Centre. A week ago, the Breakers were far too good at home, but the Taipans fought back with Ron Dorsey's overtime buzzer beater in Cairns. We reckon that the Breakers will bounce back tonight with style and panache. They have been the best outfit in the league this year by some distance, and it would be a major surprise if they are not the ones celebrating later tonight. Cairns will be a worthy opponent, but we doubt that they will match the home team in the home gym.
And while that's happening, the best Super Rugby match of the weekend will be taking place, so the inventor of MySky will again be lauded! The Blues travel to a crisp, and cool Carisbrook to take on the Highlanders, the surprise packet of the season. We keep waiting for the Highlanders' bubble to burst, but they have shown terrific resiliance so far, and the win against the Crusaders last week will have given them tremendous confidence. The Blues have been winning, but not convincingly. If they go to sleep for a moment tonight, they'll regret it. We're picking the Highlanders to win, but not by much.
In other Super Rugby matches we're tipping the injury-hit Hurricanes to cause a boilover against the injury-hit Reds tomorrow night, if only because we reckon that the Hurricanes have to fire at some point! For 60 minutes they were competitve against the Sharks, and this week, there's no Ma'a Nonu to get binned in the final minutes! We won't bet the house on it though. And we're picking the Crusaders to knock over the Force in Perth, whilst the Chiefs should have a good contest with the hapless champions, the Bulls up on the highveldt.
The Warriors were impressive against Melbourne on Monday night. Let's hope that they can maintain that defensive intensity against Penrith on Sunday in Auckland. The Melbourne game was easily their best of the season, and should give them confidence for the next few matches. Then again, this IS the Warriors we're talking about!
What else is there? The world's best female surfers are doin' their thing in the waters of the Taranaki, and after the weather we've had this week, they're brave women! The Northern Mystics can make it two New Zealand teams in the ANZ Championship playoffs iff they can win in Dunedin this weekend. And golfing prodigy Lydia Ko has had a remarkable week; she won both the strokeplay and matchplay events at the NZ Amateur Championships in Christchurch becoming the youngest ever winner, and she became the worlds #1 women's amateur golfer; oh, and she also turned 14 this week; this young woman has serious talent!
That's it from us for today; the floor is yours ...