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Soccer/Tennis Take Sporting Headlines; Related News, Hell Freezes Over

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Mark this date, remember where you were because never again will the following two sports ever dominate sporting fans mouths in the same day. Did anyone really imagine they would wake up this morning and say aloud, “not only am I going to watch both tennis and soccer, I’m going to enjoy it?” Having no interest in either sport, I watched both today and not only did I enjoy it, I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat.

In the USA vs. Algeria soccer match there was 90 minutes of goalless action. 90 minutes of players running up and down the “pitch” attempting to put the ball in the net. 90 minutes of panicked play, as these two teams on the brink of elimination, fought tooth and nail for the promise of tomorrow. That all changed in 11 seconds. If the game had lasted just 90 minutes the Americans would be on a flight home, explaining how they blew another World Cup opportunity, fortunately they had those 11 seconds.

In a game that was mostly counters by both sides, the U.S. finally capitalized in the 91st minute as they literally ran away with the victory. Never has there been a more exciting soccer game in U.S. history and it won’t ever happen again.  They survive for tomorrow as they continue on to play Ghana Saturday, winning their bracket for the first time since the first World Cup in 1930. Whether a soccer fan or not, this game was truly inspirational and as an American almost breathtaking.

Just like the rest of you I have gone out to the tennis courts and messed around with some friends while I tried to hit the hell out of the ball. This rousing event would last a half hour maybe more if there were some beverages involved but can anyone imagine playing tennis for 7 hours and 6 minutes? What if you were then asked to do it again the following day because you didn’t quite finish? How about the fact that this was after playing for 2 hours and 54 minutes the day before, would you even leave your bed? If your head hurts just thinking about this imagine how American John Isner and Frenchman Nicolas Mahut are feeling? They are in the midst of the longest game in tennis history. Today they played to a 59-59 tie in the fifth set and for the second consecutive day, play was called due to darkness.  To compare, their fifth set alone was longer than the previous longest tennis match (6:33), heck it’s almost longer then the longest double-header in MLB history (7:39) and the match is not even over. It is arguably the most impressive athletic performance by two individuals in the history of sport, not just tennis.

So two sports take the headlines, sports that few in this country love, but for one day these sports took over are daily sporting banter. It is simply amazing what these men accomplished today because it may not seem like much, but somewhere in America a kid has changed their perception of both tennis and soccer. I know the little kid in me did, even if it is only for one day.  TheTruth@RollinSD.com

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