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Tuesday 6 December 2016

Carrzone: Ring walk protocol will give Lee an edge in title defence

Andy Lee
Andy Lee
Bradley Wiggins

At the highest level of sport things that might seem insignificant to most can often give a huge advantage.

As Andy Lee (inset) prepares to defend his WBO world middleweight title against former champion Peter "Kid Chocolate" Quillin in Brooklyn on Saturday night, the Irish fighter knows that, as the man with the title, he's in the driving seat.

"When we're at the press conference, he's going to have to get up and speak first, something he's not used to doing," says Andy, with some relish. "And when we walk to the ring, he's going to have to walk to the ring first and I get in introduced second. It's all those little things that he won't be comfortable doing 'cos he's never been on the B-side before.

"All those things will be playing on his mind. And when we walk to the ring I'll have someone beside me holding the belt."

Quillin has another statistic stacked against him. He's never faced a Limerick Person of the Year before! And, in a city of sporting, cultural and social great, Andy Lee is the latest to receive this prestigious award.

Wiggins for Hell of the North race before quitting

Sunday's Paris-Roubaix, the race known as 'The Hell of the North', will be Bradley Wiggins' last as a professional cyclist and the 34-year old 2012 Tour de France winner is determined to go out with a flourish.

He finished in ninth last year topping his previous best of 25th.

"I learnt a lot from last year," says the Team Sky rider (inset). "This time we will plan for all eventualities."

His team-mate Geraint Thomas is Team Sky's main man and Wiggins will be expected to provide back up.

"He's on the verge of winning something big," says Wiggins, who afterwards will begin concentrating on his preparations for next year's Rio Olympics.

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"Paris-Roubaix is a special race ," he says.

"It's one of the toughest races in the calendar."

Seán Kelly, who won nine of these demanding races, describes Wiggins as "the master of preparation" but worries that he may not have been doing his homework long enough before Sunday's demanding challenge. Kelly admits a Wiggins win would "put him on another level as a rider".

 

Tributes for a Hoops fan George who timed his run

Shamrock Rovers scored three goals against Galway United at Tallaght Stadium on Friday evening. And the club's supporters also scored in a big way with their heartfelt minute's applause for that great Hoops fan, member and special club supporter, George Byrne.

The Ultras' "R.I.P. Ringo" banner was class as was the carefully selected music programme at the match, a set that included The Beach Boys' Sloop John B. George knew how to time a tackle.

Like in 1993 when Bohs, having limited the damage to a 0-1 loss in Dalymount against Girondins Bordeaux, with Zinedine Zidane in midfield, got tonked 5-0 away. George waited patiently for weeks until we were at some industry lunch and then, when I least expected it, enquired rather too loudly, "How are you enjoying the Bordeaux, Eamon?" I can still hear him chuckling.

 

It's the Rory and Tiger Show

In a survey by ESPN.com of 103 Tour professionals, 21 of whom were major champions, two of the questions carry an important resonance as the world awaits the outcome of this week's Masters at Augusta National. Almost a quarter of the pros canvassed believe Rory McIlroy will win his fifth career major this week. And sixty-five percent believe that Tiger Woods will win at least one more major in his career.

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