One of the true benefits of this weird lockdown situation is the lack of football being played. Add to that the willingness of national sports organisations to allow YouTube to display full matches on its excellent video platform and my happiness is almost complete.
One of the first to broadcast national rugby union matches in full was New Zealand. Now this country is renowned for a number of things – the setting for the Lord of the Rings films, a Prime Minister with balls (Jacinda Ardern), being one of the first countries to fully lock down against the virus and consequently one of the first countries to declare itself virus free. The only snag is that it insists on televising matches where New Zealand win and often against the Pommies. While I can stand to see England losing – let’s face it we should be used to it – it begins to pall after a while. I was pleased, then, to find that England Rugby has followed suit and we can now watch our heroes batter each other into glorious submission. Add to this the absence of need to get up early (yes, I’m that lucky now) and my Sunday morning looks like this….
|07:30||slowly regain consciousness, wince as I realise I’m half out of bed in the freezing cold and my toes are touching the rapidly heating radiator|
|07:45||mumble grateful thanks as MBH brings a steaming hot coffee to my bedside or… alternatively.|
|07:47||mumble gratuitous obscenities as I stumble downstairs to make coffee while MBH snores loudly in our warm bed.|
|07:56||struggle to locate the remote which has in the night insinuated itself between quilt and sheet and is hiding in a fold of the bedding close to one of us – but who?|
|08:00||persuade our smart Roku box to locate the YouTube app and search agonisingly slowly for ‘New Zealand Rugby Union – Full Match New Zealand versus England 2017′ typing each letter slowly and painstakingly on an alphabetically arranged letter grid.|
|08:05||lie back and enjoy England, or Wales, or South Africa, or Australia being royally whupped by the All Blacks in blurred low definition on our 4K super screen TV due to a poor internet speed.|
|08:06||drink lukewarm coffee and snuggle under the warm quilt.|
|08:56||dash downstairs at half time to make fresh coffee, crumbly toast and ever so sticky marmalade which will hide both crumbs and stickiness amongst our bedding for us to find again tonight.|
|09:30||bemoan the inadequacy of English Rugby Union, the reliance on the charge by the forwards and the kicking game of the centres who are clearly frustrated footballers|
|10:30||head downstairs at last for a BLT and more coffee and a plan to repeat the same next weekend.|