Worcester Warriors 15 Sale Sharks 29
When I was a kid we didn’t have the Internet. We didn’t have smart phones, we didn’t even have stupid ones! If you couldn’t get to your sporting event of choice you either had to listen to it on The Wireless (ok, Radio…I’m not that old!), or my favourite way of doing it, Teletext. If you’ve never followed a game of cricket on Teletext then you, my friend, have not lived! The page would normally refresh after each over, leaving you in a heightened state, not knowing if a run had been scored or a wicket had been taken.
For the sports fan today, of course, the digital world is their oyster. On line and digital radio coverage mean that games can be listened to from the car, shops, park or bathtub. Twenty four hour sports news channels will now keep you up to date with anything you’ve missed and then of course there is Twitter. I am a big fan of Twitter and make no apology about it. Luckily so are my rugby team @SaleSharksRugby (that’s their Twitter ‘handle’, not a massive typo, for all you non Tweeps out there). The club has embraced the digital revolution and through Twitter keeps its fans updated with everything off and on the field.
Hence, on Saturday, I found myself indebted to the club’s Twitter feed as the only way I could follow the game against Worcester Warriors in the Again Challenge Cup. As it started it took me back to my Teletext days of watching cricket, that feeling of not knowing what will happen next when the page refreshes. Here’s how it felt….
1 min Sale have a pen, Cipps goes for corner, lineout on 22… a good start!
6 min Sale have another pen, Cipps goes for the posts… I now have to wait for the next Tweet to see if he will get it, will he? Will he?
6 min Cipriani scores 0-3 Sale… Phew!
8 min Worcester fight back and get a penalty of their own… Please miss
8 min They get it. Worcester 3-3 Sale… Damn!
15 min Sale get a pen at scrum, Cipps goes for goal but hits upright… It’s all going wrong!
18 min TRY For Sale! Rob Miller after lovely miss pass from Cipriani … It’s all going right!
30 min Penalty TRY! Super effort from the forwards, 3-17 to Sale… I’m starting to relax
38 min Another TRY To Sale! Peel scores after great break from Arscott… I’m relaxed
Half time Sale lead 3-24… Kettle on, all is good.
42 min Yellow card for Sale. Tip tackle by Sam Tuitupou… I spilt my tea, it hurt!
45 min Try to Worcester. Alex Grove goes over on the left wing, 8-24… All is not good!
53 min Another Try to Worcester. A driving maul scored by Mike Williams. 15-24… I’m no longer relaxed!
58 min And They Get Their Fourth! Mark Easter scores the bonus point try! 15-29!
…It was about this time that my connection went down and I just had to sit and hope…
80 min Bonus Point Win For Sale today who lie on TOP of Pool 1 with nine points!… Says all we need to know really…
And so, the rollercoaster ride that was my first experience of following a rugby game on Twitter was over. I can highly recommend it. Just don’t have any hot drinks near you at the time!
Ps, a big thank you to Dave Swanton (@swannymediaman) and Stephen Thomas (@stethomas33) who keep the Twitter feed and us fans updated on a daily basis.