Bad blood between teams may provide a short-term boost but it also brings with it a longer-term popular disengagement. Thankfully, the opposite is happening within English cricket.
Ed Caesar's new book asks if the record is breakable - and who could break it.
The twisting of proud nations on skewers of debt and want, the rise of shrill nationalisms, the fear of foreigners – all these staples of modern life can’t be more than bland echoes of those dismal days, can they?
This very enjoyable biography-cum-autobiography illuminates not just Federer’s place in tennis history but also the way in which the author converted his psychological problems into sporting fandom.
Ed Smith celebrates the free spirit of the New Zealand cricket team.
Caledonian Asians and itinerant Englishmen (myself included) complement a healthy population of diehard Scots who continue to support the national game.
Competitiveness – against peers or past greats – may prove the initial motivation. But how long can it drive a life or a career?
For all their righteous indignation about Fifa’s misdeeds under Blatter, the English football authorities were willing participants in the circus.
Sepp Blatter is a consummate politician who took advantage of a shifting world order and Fifa’s history.
Re-elected for a fifth term even as his organisation is mired in a corruption scandal.
I had a splendid election campaign. I left England for the Caribbean.
Football's governing body has been thrown into chaos by two anti-corruption inquiries.
Next season, I hope for the return of gigantic sideboards, like what George Best and Malcolm Macdonald used to have.
Fans have no money left for books and they can look it up online, anyway.
It is a magical story, that a tiny archipelago came to dominate a world sport - but now the West Indies board owes £27m.
Pencils at the ready - Hunter Davies has prepared a simple test to split the fakers from the true fans.
Can we learn something about redistribituion and fairness from the land of corporate Darwinism?
The extraordinary support is one of the main reasons why people aspire to run the London Marathon. Where else will you have strangers scream your name as though you were famous?
He was doing something I’d never seen before in Kentish Town Baths, and I’ve been going for over 40 years.
Instead of playing to win, politicians are seeking not to lose.
In a way, football is democratic - your looks don't matter as much as your ability. So why is such a huge part of loving it hating the players?
Champion of Europe? Not these days. Hunter Davies explains some of the reasons England aren't quite the footballing force they once were.
"The fact that the majority of players in any Premiership game these days are foreign, and so many of them black, does not seem to have had an appreciable effect on the faces in the crowd."
Where have all the Scottish managers gone? This week, Hunter Davies seeks an intern to count them.
If this kind of performance is what you get after six months of dedicated planning, then less planning sounds good to me.
"Wenger sat there silently, on the verge of a seizure."
This looks set to be a minimalist budget - but not all is as it seems, and opposition Ed Balls would do well to veer away from it sooner rather than later.
The conflict between instict and reason has left me having a small domestic disagreement in my head.
Football, where the dirty cockney and the whippet handler live on.
Biographies by Hugo Borst and Maarten Meijer get to know Manchester United's new manager.