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Weekly Roundup 06.09.2024

As sporting weeks go, it hasn't been the best if you happen to follow England's fortunes. Not only have we limped into Euro 2024 with a rather embarrassing defeat by Iceland at Wembley (more on that later) but, in cricket, they also run the risk of going out of the T20 World Cup at the first group stage (designed to ensure the top teams go through to the "Super" 8's stage). If results go the way they should then England face the unenviable prospect of watching Australia against Scotland (yes, Scotland play cricket) knowing that a narrow Scottish defeat would send them home, as defending champions, with their tails firmly between their leagues.

As if we didn't need to be reminded, it offers a glimpse into the cyclical nature of sports where periods of dominance can quickly fall apart. One might say the beginning of the end is happening over at Red Bull. Perhaps that's a little too early to say with confidence but the last few races have brought a level of unpredictability not seen for some time. Long may that continue.

Onto the round-up and we begin with a sport that doesn't often come across our desks, wrestling. But Vignesh Suresh isn't showcasing any old wrestler here, no, he shares the accomplishments of legend Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson with this fantastic career timeline covering the multitude of accolades achieved throughout this fascinating journey. Great work, Vignesh!

With the scheduling of football matches continually in the news, the risks they pose to player welfare, and the potential for increased injuries, this dashboard by Manny Fajemilua does a fantastic job of plotting player injuries, their severity, and the likely return to playing. I can imagine this being a great addition to those fantasy football enthusiasts wanting to monitor their squads. I love the previous injury details too which provide an in-depth history of the players.

If you fancy a challenge then check out this LinkedIn post below from Claudiu Anghelescu. Your task (before the 20th of June) is to use the data provided and visualise Romania's journey to Euro 2024. If you can't wait until the beginning of the tournament, this will help while away the hours until the opening match.

As a keen, but limited, tennis player I'm constantly in admiration of those who compete in the French Open. The attritional nature of top-level tennis on this slowest of surfaces makes the endurance aspect of the competition as important as the player's skills. Unless, of course, you can blow away your opponent losing only 10 points. That accolade goes to recently crowned, Queen of the Clay, Iga Swiatek who dominated Anastasia Potapova in the round of 16 on the way to her triumph at Roland Garros. Jeff Sackmann shares details of equally devasting performances and more in this X thread.

Resource sharing time: For those looking for detailed Baseball stats then check out this link: Shared with us by Kate VandDerAa this comprehensive data shares player-level details across a number of metrics and leagues.

Finally, let's come back to that England debacle at Wembley on Friday night. Registering June one shot on target (if you can call the 1st half effort by Phil Foden a shot) was our lowest return since the Euro 2020 group match with Scotland. If you are looking for someone to blame for this lacklustre showing, then look no further. Just a few hours before kick-off Mo Wootten shared with us his claim, and I quote "This might be the best attacking men's squad we've had for a long while". Thanks to Mo's hex we now face three excruciatingly drab group games, scraping through in 3rd place before being dismantled by a far superior team in the round of 16.

Joking aside, I spent some time with the viz when it came through. As I keen follower of England's football fortune, it was a pleasure (not the right word) to reminisce of squads gone by when our hopes rested on the shoulders of just one player (Owen, Beckham, Rooney) who were inevitably injured, out of form or red-carded before or during the tournament. It's clear to see from Mo's analysis that we do have a potent attacking force and on paper far better than we've produced in recent years. We can win it, we will win it. Come on England!

That's it, folks. Enjoy the Canadian Grand Prix, the French Open final, the start of the European Championships or just enjoy life.

Until next week,

Simon and the #sportsvizsunday team.

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