World of Sport

5 crazy things you missed: Panda’s friend, full moon, and Wenger joke

World of Sport

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The world of sport throws up a lot of stories every day - funny, shocking, bizarre and amazing. But you don't read them all. You can't. You don't have time.

That's where we come in: each day, World of Sport brings you the pick of the stories that you might have missed from the last day or two. Here's today's choice.

Think we missed something better? Let us know in the comments box down below.


1) From ‘Metta World Peace’ to ‘Panda’s Friend’… Ron Artest does it again

In 2011, NBA star Ronald William Artest Jr. made headlines – and laughs – when he changed his name to ‘Metta World Peace’.

His first name, Metta, is a Buddhist word meaning ‘love and kindness towards all’ and World Peace is self-explanatory.

Then playing for LA Lakers, former Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings and Houston Rockets forward wanted to inspire youth to make the world a better place.

Since then he has played for New York Knicks and now he is in China, with Sichuan Blue Whales.

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And on Monday, World Peace did it again, plumping for ‘The Panda’s Friend’.

“New Chinese name coming soon,” he tweeted. “You guys are going to love it!”

This name change is a bit more straightforward – as the highest-paid basketball player in China’s history, he is simply paying tribute to his new hosts.

And fans got in on the act, expressing their happiness at his latest stunt.

Ron, as one presumes his family calls him, has certainly come a long way since he was suspended for 86 games for attacking a fan in the stands during the 2004-05 season…

2) Arsene Wenger cracks a joke

His nickname is ‘Professor’ due to his scholarly manner, but the Arsenal boss does have a sense of humour, usually wryly executed (unless, of course, his players get lumps kicked out of them by Stoke).

During the official press conference ahead of Arsenal’s Community Shield match against Manchester City, an absent-minded journalist failed to silence his or her phone, letting off a spooky ring-tone while Wenger insisted both teams would take the pre-season showpiece seriously.

Instead of being put out by the interruption, Wenger laughed and said it was an “interesting” choice of ring-tone, before hinting it was an omen at how “competitive” the match would be.

You had to be there…

3) Golfer makes a different kind of hole…

English golfer Chris Wood had an embarrassing interlude during the PGA Championship’s first round.

Leaning in to assess a putt on the 11th green of the second hole, his trousers ripped at the back. Oops. "Quite a big hole," he joked.

Unfortunately for Wood he didn’t have a spare set – so he borrowed some from playing partner Johan Kok.

Problem – Wood is 6’6” and Kok’s trousers were too small for him, so he borrowed another pair. But that wasn’t the end of it, as manager Stuart Cage materialised with a FOURTH pair of trousers, this time belonging to Wood.

Even that had a touch of drama – Cage initially went into the wrong hotel room, surprising a bewildered guest.

“The lady I walked in on got quite a shot,” Cage said.

Wood didn’t let it ruffle him – indeed, he shot a majestic 66, one shot off the lead.

4) Football club lose their rag on official website

Every now and again a football player or team thinks the whole world is against them.

Sometimes this is expressed through ill-advised comments on television or social media.
But Salisbury City, a Conference team in England, went one better by publishing a deranged, conspiratorial rant on their official website.


Accusing the league and Football Association of “stitching” them up, of being “atrocious” and of “conspiring” to put them out of business, the statement was heartfelt, paranoid and grammatically incorrect.

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In short it was brilliant. More of the same please.

5) ‘Walter Mitty’ owner gets his comeuppance

You know those glamorous businessmen who fly into struggling football clubs promising the earth and more, but who transpire to be nothing but fantasists and con-men despite passing laughable “fit and proper persons” tests?

And you know how they always seem to get away with it while the poor clubs involved slide into oblivion?

Well, as ever, football should take a leaf out of rugby’s books.

Neil Hollinshead, who targeted rugby club London Welsh when they were suffering financial difficulties in 2009, was jailed for seven years after he bought the club for £6 but failed to provide any investment, let alone the £1 million they needed.

"It's plain to me that you produced not one penny of your own, let alone the £1m you promised, and which quite obviously never existed,” the judge at Southwark Crown Court said as he sent Hollinshead down.

Don’t expect similar cases in football any time soon.

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