"I don't think I should sit here and justify everything I've done. I'm not some sh*t rider who comes from nowhere. I've been three-times pursuit Olympic champion, do you imagine what kind of engine you need to be Olympic champion? I was six-times world champion, fourth in the Tour de France, third in the Vuelta last year. It's not like I come from nowhere. I have an incredible pedigree since I was in my teens. I'm only human, I'm a kid from London happened to be good at riding a bike, I make mistakes, I swear, I'm not a role model" — Tour de France leader Bradley Wiggins makes another fiery stand against snide comments surrounding his success at Le Tour.
"To all those who support me, I can say that I can still look at myself in the mirror. I have never doped" — Remy Di Gregorio of Cofidis insists he is clean following his arrest for alleged doping at the Tour de France.
"Where is the frontier between physical preparation and doping? That's the question experts will have to answer" - Di Gregorio's lawyer Dominique Mattei leaves the door open to interpretation.
"He said he injected ozone into the rider's bloodstream twice. During another meeting, he had taken a blood sample that he enriched with ozone before injecting it again. During another meeting, he injected a dose of 250 ml of glucose into the rider. Those two practices are forbidden" - Marseille prosecutor Jacques Dallest sheds further light on the situation.
"I hope my presence makes people think twice not to (dope). I hope they never contemplate it because it really doesn't help. You may look at times and statistics but it doesn't help your life. It will ruin your life and you'll regret it forever. I hope I can be used as an example - living the lie eats you up so you can't get away with it even if you don't get caught. I got worse on drugs. It did not help me in any capacity. It made me a very unsociable person and ruined my career and the image of the sport. I hate to think I caused that. That is guilt" - Dwain Chambers fires yet another warning shot against those tempted to take performance-enhancing drugs (The Times).
"Chisora's not a nice man, not a nice human being. I don't like anything he represents — the fact he's been convicted of beating up his ex-girlfriend, the fact he feels the need to carry around an offensive weapon — he's been convicted of that as well. From the stuff I've seen and from what I've heard from people who know him, he's a horrible, spiteful man and a bully. He needs to be punished because the law hasn't punished him. He's never done any hard time. So it's left to me to punish this guy and I'll do that" — David Haye wants to take the law into his own hands against Dereck Chisora. Deja vu?
"It is not something I'm proud of. For a while we did this almost every week. We made a fair bit of money. We could make deals with the opposing captain about, for example, betting on the first throw, the first corner, who started with the ball, a yellow card or a penalty. Those were the sorts of thing we had influence over. The results were never on the agenda. That is something I would never have done. We were professional competitors. Even though what we did, of course, was illegal, it was just a fun thing. I know it happened at other clubs as well. We footballers live in a bubble. It was part of the lifestyle and the excitement. Whatever we could bet on, we bet on" - Claus Lundekvam endears himself to former Southampton team-mates by claiming spot-fixing was endemic during his time as a player.
"Bouch, we have walked a long road together, and we are saddened to part under these circumstances. For the 14 years of your international career, you have been a true Proteas warrior, a patriotic South African, a fighter who asks nothing and gives everything. You have been a 100-percenter for this team. You have been more than a performer, you have been a motivator, an inspirer, an energiser… and a good friend to many. You leave us today with sad hearts, but also with a deep gratitude for your contributions to our team, and to us as people" — an emotional tribute to Mark Boucher from South Africa captain Graeme Smith after his friend and team-mate was forced to retire from international cricket due to a serious eye injury suffered during a tour match against Somerset.
"At 35 now I'm not Benjamin Button. I'm not going the other way. It's my time to walk away and let these young guys build their careers and step into the spotlight" — Australia legend Brett Lee explains his decision to retire from international cricket.
"I've always said, lighting the torch in the stadium is something that should be done by an Olympian... who has done incredible things for our country and won gold medals" — humble, handsome and not selected, David Beckham explains why he will not be lighting the Olympic torch.
"In the US, even gold medallists are a dime a dozen. There's a lot more good I can do competing for Haiti, representing the country on the international level" — US-born and raised Samyr Laine explains why he is competing in the triple jump for Haiti and not the country of his birth. Laine can afford to take risks — he was Mark Zuckerberg's room-mate at Harvard and has a job at a top US law firm waiting for him when he wants it.
"A big inspiration for participating in the Olympic Games is being one of the first women for Saudi Arabia to be going. It's such a huge honour and I hope that it can really make some big strides for women over there to get more involved in sport" — Sarah Attar, a 17-year-old middle distance runner, who will be one of two women from Saudi Arabia to compete at the Games, the first females to do so from the conservative Muslim kingdom.
"I am not going to lie, I was nervous before the race: it's a world junior final, it's in this stadium in Barcelona, how can you not be nervous? But you need to use your nerves in a good way, try to use them to help you run and I did it" — the very likeable Adam Gemili after winning 100 metres gold at the World Juniors. Gemili was a non-league footballer last season.
"Maybe I can get some tips from him because of the great way he executed. I think he's going to be one of the greatest sprinters of all time" - USA sprint star Tyson Gay on Gemili.
"... your mum loves Scouse c***" — during his trial for allegedly racially abusing Anton Ferdinand, Chelsea captain John Terry gives an example of the kind of abuse he is subjected to by fans on a game-by-game basis. We could fill this post with references to the 'hilarious' banter between footballers and fans exposed at the trial, but it would be lazy so we won't.
"How Peter Ebdon is allowed to play that slow is a joke"... "nothing personal. Just think it's unfair he has to do that to win" — Snooker starlet Judd Trump says what we've all been thinking about Ebdon's snail-like progress at the Australian Open.
- Sports & Recreation