London 2012: The Announcement

I get tingly arms every time I think about the moment that London were announced the host city for the 30th Olympic Games.

I remember being at work (way back in 2005) and refreshing the page on the internet to see the announcement come through LIVE.

Would it be London?

Could London possibly beat the favourite, Paris?

Here’s a video of Trafalgar Square in London. You can feel the tension as the crowd nervously await the news…

What a moment!!!

Tonight all eyes will be on London as they open the games with a huge ceremony in the Olympic Stadium. Tonight I will be more than ever to be British. Here’s to a fantastic games. Good luck to all taking part.

Murray Mania!

He’s done it!

An emotional semi final victory for Murray

He’s made it to the Wimbledon Final.

The British fans have waited 74 years for this momentous day when finally a male Brit (and yes, I acknowledge that he is a Scot and a Brit) makes it to the last match.

The crowd cheer on the local hero – It’s almost as though he’s won the whole thing.

Can Murray win on Sunday?

I hope so.

The match against Tsonga was a thriller today. Murray started fighting for his final place right at the start! He broke Tsonga early and looked to take it in three straight sets. Tsonga wasn’t going to go down with a battle…

I never thought I would see the final section of the draw look this good! Yay!!!!!!!!!!!!! He meets Roger Federer next – it’s not going to be easy.

from Wikipedia

The 2012 Champion? – We will soon see….

There are some signs that he could be heading for victory:

  • Fred Perry turned 25 in the May that he won Wimbledon. Murray has just turned 25 (this May).
  • In 1977, Virginia Wade was the last British women to win Wimbledon… It was also a Jubilee year for Queen Elizabeth II – just like 2012.
  • I have a feeling – and that’s good enough for me.

I have everything crossed for Andy Murray!

Go win it!

You may also enjoy reading these posts:

Shock at Wimbledon 2012 – the one where Nadal got knocked out by Rosol.

Is it time to ban Serena from Grand Slams? – the one where Serena lost her temper at the 2011 US Open Final.

Shock at Wimbledon 2012

The Wimbledon Championships are a sporting highlight of the year. Each year I tune in hopeful to see Andy Murray, the British number 1 make it to the final. This year, though I was more surprised by a match that I watched featuring Rafael Nadal and Lukáš Rosol.

Who is Lukáš Rosol

Exactly what I was thinking before I saw his amazing match on Thursday evening.

Rosol, from the Czech Republic blew Nadal out of the water with his thrilling tennis skills and ultimate composure. Nadal didn’t know what was happening. I don’t think I have seen a ‘newcomer’ play with such conviction in a long time (if ever). Rosol started a little nervous – and not surprising when playing one of the tennis greats. But, the first set went to a tie-break, and a close one too… Nadal won it, but was to be shocked when Rosol went on to take the 2nd and 3rd sets.

Shock!

Nadal fought back in the fourth and won it relatively easily. It was going to go to go the distance. A fifth set loomed. Surely, Nadal had it in the bag…

Rosol broke Nadal and kept up the big hits. Ace after ace and such precision! I was in awe! I couldn’t believe how accurate and how well he played. Lukáš Rosol had the look of a winner in his eyes. You could how much he really wanted the win.

Nadal out.

Rosol had done the unthinkable – and won!

Who would have predicted that the World number 100 could knock out Nadal? Not me. But I am pleased. I like the underdog to do well – but I also like Nadal out of the way – as Murray would have faced him in the semi-finals.

Image from Clive Rose/Getty Images

Here’s Rosol after his historical victory.

Below is the score line.

Via Wikipedia

What will happen next?

How far will Rosol get in the championships?

Will he go head-to-head with Murray?

Eurovision Semi Final 2

Less than a week to go! Eurovision Season is starting…

The second semi final for the Eurovision will be on Thursday 24th May.

Here are the entries (in order) for the second semi final.  I have said a little about each one. In bold are the ones I hope to qualify.

Serbia: 7/10 – This man knows how to do well in Eurovision. He represented Serbia-Montenegro in 2004, coming 2nd and then wrote the Serbian entry in 2008, coming 6th – as well as hosting it in Belgrade. Watch out…

Macedonia (FYROM): 8/10 – This lady has a voice. What a belter! Effortlessly sung. I think it will get a LOT of Balkan votes.

The Netherlands: 8/10 – The Dutch have a terrible record in qualifying – 2004 was the last time they made the final. I hope this gentle song about childhood memories takes them through. You’ll remember the Indian headdress – that’s for sure.

Malta: 6/10 – 1980s throw back. This is performed by a guy who needs to wear looser clothing.

Belarus: 6/10 –  Their 9th entry and one which won’t do particularly well. I liked it to start with, but have gone off it.

Portugal: 8/10 – Typical Portugal – anthemic and possibly not gonna make it through the semi.

Ukraine: 8/10 – This has grown on me. It’s very West End ‘Lion King’…

Bulgaria: Zzzzzzz. Possibly the second worst entry.

Slovenia: 10/10 – My personal favourite! This gentle ballad builds to a fantastic finish. The 16-year-old has a great voice. I LOVE it!

Croatia: 4/10 – A dull Balkan ballad. Zzzzzzz.

Sweden: 10/10 – Whoah! Time to wake up. Something different in Eurovision. Loreen does some contemporary dance with martial arts moves in this attention grabbing number. Brilliant. I won’t be surprised if we’re in Stockholm next year.

Georgia: 5/10 –  They qualify every year – I don’t know how. This probably will – but it’s not great.

Turkey: 8/10 – Another grower. After seeing this guy in Amsterdam, I love it. Ahoy there Turkey. See you in the final…

Estonia: 10/10 – A gentle ballad, sung by a handsome chappy. Estonia deserve to do well with this. But, there are a LOT of ballads in this semi.

Slovakia: 5/10 –  It’s a bit Bon Jovi – which is a little odd.

Norway: 9/10 –  Sung in English; written by a Swede and sung by an Iranian/Norwegian. Recipe for Top 5. They are recreating Sweden’s 2011 entry though…. blatantly.

Bosnia-Herzegovina: 6/10 –  And again – another Balkan ballad. Zzzzzz.

Lithuania: 5/10 – A dull end to the night.  Not great. This won’t be bringing the prize back to Lithuania. Sounds like Wham!

Which 10 do you think will make the final?

Watch the songs from Semi Final 1 and read my comments here.

Those Russian Grannies

Russia could be on the brink of winning the Eurovision Song Contest.

This year it was not a 20-something girl in a short, sparkly skirt who won over the Russian voters – but a group of six gorgeous little grannies, Buranovskiye Babushki – and I love them!

This is my favourite one! She is the star of the show… (Just so cute).

To make them even more amazing, they beat off fierce competition from the Russian superstars, Dima Bilan and Yulia Volkova . Dima had previously achieved 2nd in the Eurovision in 2006 and then went on to win it in 2008. Yulia was no stranger to Eurovision either, having competed as half of t.A.T.u in 2003, coming 3rd. They were the act to beat…

And boy those Russian grans beat them to a pulp.

I don’t know what I enjoyed more – Watching the grannies sing and dance on stage or seeing the facial expressions of Dima and Yulia as the cameras swung past them as the winning song was performed. TV classic!

So, now Russia are second favourites to win the whole contest in just over two weeks in Baku.

Do they have what it takes?

Take a look at their performance in the Russian National Final.

Star Wars Day: May the 4th Be With You

“May the fourth be with you!” (get it? fourth – force – hahahaha)

People say it every year – but why?

Star Wars fans have claimed it as their own saying, but it was actually coined way back in 1979 when the UK Conservative Party put an advertisement in The London Evening News on May 4th that said “May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations.” This was after Margaret Thatcher’s famous victory in the UK general election, which saw her become the UK’s first and only female prime minister (to date).

Happy Star Wars Day!

More about it on Wikipedia here.

REVIEW: Eurovision in Concert 2012

This year, for the fourth time, Amsterdam was the host city for the biggest pre-Eurovision concert. It has become quite an extraordinary event  with more than half of the contestants coming to showcase their entries. There are only a few weeks before the contest goes to Baku in Azerbaijan. The countdown is on…

This year the event was held on Saturday 21st April 2012 in the Melkweg, a popular venue for bands when playing in Amsterdam. The organisation was much better than last year, which had a series of sound problems which created endless issues for the evening. The Melkweg was fantastic and the evening went without a hitch! Perfect!

The hosts for the evening were Cornald Maas and Ruth Jacott, the Dutch performer in the 1993 Eurovision. She strutted her stuff in Millstreet and belted out Vrede coming a very respectable 6th for The Netherlands.

BEST PERFORMANCE: Spain. Pastora blew away the crowd with her live performance of Quédate Conmigo. What a pair of lungs she has on her! I expect (and hope) Spain to do very well this year in Baku.

MOST ENTERTAINING: Ireland. Jedward really know how to entertain a crowd. I really didn’t like them last year in Düsseldorf, but with Waterline as their comeback I love them.

MOST EMBARASSING WARDROBE MALFUNCTION: France. Poor, poor Anggun wore a lovely red dress, which for those on the first 6 rows of audience (me included), got a perfect view up… I rather feel that someone should have advised her against white pants with a red dress… oh la la…

HOTTEST PERFORMER: Moldova. Hello, Pasha! That’s all I have to say on the matter.

MOST CRINGEWORTHY: San Marino. Deranged doesn’t even begin to describe this. San Marino decided to ‘test’ the rules of Eurovision. A song all about ‘Facebook’ although it’s not allowed to be called that now. I think Facebook should sue!

MY FAVOURITE: Slovenia. Eva’s song is my far my favourite for Baku, although on the night it didn’t come across well. Unfortunately, her backing singers weren’t there and they play a vital role in the performance as one sings the gentle aaaah bits.

THE ONES I MISSED: Sweden and Russia. Oh how I would have loved them to be there. Sweden has the song of the year and a great performance (but will it win?) and Russia have the grannies who I adore.

I predict a close one between Sweden and Russia.

Enjoy my photos from the night.

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