In this month’s sports column, Margaret Brecknell takes a look back at some of the sporting highlights from September in the North including notable performances from two sports stars who have been featured here in previous months. There’s also the usual preview of what to look forward to in the coming weeks.
Golf – Ryder Cup
We have been keeping a close eye on Tommy Fleetwood’s impressive performances over the summer, but the Southport golfer may have produced his best one yet during the Ryder Cup held in France from September 28-30. The Europe team defeated USA by 17½ to 10½ in the most one-sided victory for over a decade. Fleetwood formed a winning partnership with Italian Francesco Molinari, dubbed ‘Moliwood’, with the good friends making it four wins out of four in the pairs.
Another pairing to catch our eye over the summer months has been Bury’s cycling twin brothers, Adam and Simon Yates. Earlier in the summer success proved elusive for Simon as he endured the disappointment of missing out on the Giro D’Italia after leading for much of the event. However, it was a different story in Spain in September as he was crowned winner of the Vuelta a Espana in Madrid.
Possibly the most unsurprising sporting result of the month was Sir Mo Farah’s victory in the Great North Run for a record fifth year in a row. Other highlights included a win for David Weir in the men’s wheelchair race in a new course record and pop star Olly Murs’ first appearance as a runner. It was also heartwarming to see the mothers of Chloe Rutherford and Liam Curry, two victims of the Manchester Arena bomb attack, take part. Lisa Rutherford and Caroline Curry raised funds for the Chloe and Liam Together Forever Trust, the charity they set up in their children’s memory.
Lancashire endured a difficult end to the season with relegation to Division Two of the County Championship and defeat at the semi-final stage of the T20 Blast. Across the border, Yorkshire narrowly avoided relegation. Not for the first time in the White Rose county’s history there have been rumours of unrest in the dressing room and first-team coach Andrew Gale has come in for much criticism on social media.
Leeds diver Matty Lee has announced he is moving to London to team up with Tom Daley as the diving legend’s new 10m synchro partner. Despite an injury-hit 2018 season, Lee won a silver medal in the European Championships mixed synchro event with Huddersfield’s Lois Toulson.
COMING UP IN OCTOBER
The Super League season will reach a climax with the Grand Final at Old Trafford on October 13. St Helens are strong favourites to take the trophy after finishing top of the regular season league table, with an impressive 26 wins from 30 games.
The first Yorkshire Marathon may have taken place only six years ago, but this event has already established itself as one of the most popular on the UK running calendar. This is hardly surprising as the course takes in York’s most popular tourist spots, as well as the scenic countryside beyond the historic city’s walls. Entries for this year’s race on October 14 are now closed, but why not turn out on the day to cheer on the brave competitors?
The World Taekwondo Grand Prix will take place in Manchester from October 19-21. GB stars Jade Jones, Bianca Walkden and Lutalo Muhammed are all expected to take part in the hunt for valuable ranking points ahead of next year’s World Championships, which will also be held in Manchester.
Main image: Great North Run by Phil Pounder