Trinity Rodman  of Washington Spirit dribbling between  Chicago Red Stars players during  a  NWSL Championship match in Louisville, Kentucky. Photograph: Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

The 19-year-old is lighting up US women’s soccer with shots, crosses and cameos of brilliance

For his last victory in the octagon against Stipe Miocic, Francis Ngannou received $580,000. Photograph: Jeff Bottari/Getty

Swapping the octagon for a pay day in the ring is far more lucrative for MMA stars

Madison Cawthorn pictured at the Capitol in Washington on January 3rd 2021. Photograph: Bill Clark/Getty

Even in post-Trump politics, the Republican cuts an especially mendacious character

Henry Orenstain (second from left), with Doyle Brunson, T.J. Cloutier and Howard Lederer. Photo: Stephen Lovekin/FilmMagic

Introduction of Transformers to the US also down to the late Polish toymaker

 LaVar Ball:  continues to boast  about his sons  in a (usually) successful quest to garner yet more headlines and perhaps boost sales of BBB products.  Photograph:  Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

Most Trumpian of fathers says he always knew his kids would be hotshots on the court

The Jacksonville Jaguars have endured a season to forget under Urban Meyer. Photograph: Kevork Djansezian/Getty

Former college coach, notorious rule-bender and born-again Christian has flopped in NFL

Mohammad Ali and Trevor Berbick at the weigh-in for their heavyweight fight in Nassau, the Bahamas in December 1981. Photograph:  Focus on Sport/Getty Images

The Greatest’s last opponent saw his life unravel after a heavy beating by Mike Tyson

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant shoots over Minnesota Timberwolves forward Josh Okogie. Photograph: Peter Foley/EPA

Finn’s first NBA experience was a special one alongside his grandad

Last week, NBC agreed to pay nearly $3 billion for the rights to show every single Premier League game live for the next six years. Photograph: Tim Clayton/Getty

Broadcasters like NBC investing in future as young audiences absorb worldwide leagues

A survey revealed 92 per cent of students say they wouldn’t report hazing to the authorities. Photograph: Getty Images

An estimated 1.5m American teenagers are victims of initiation rites every year

Joe Rogan has become one of the most listened-to podcast hosts in the world. Photo: Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Green Bay Packers quarterback sought counsel of podcast host on Covid-19 vaccine

Brandon Brown won the Sparks 300 Nascar XFINITY Series race at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama. Photo: Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Misheard ‘F**k Joe Biden’ chant has become a slogan for those of a right-wing persuasion

Joe Fulks tries a signature jump shot. Photograph: New York Knicks

Naming of NBA’s 75 best players gives inventor of the jump shot a deserved tribute

Jimmy Neary inside his restaurant on East 57th Street in New York in 2019. Photo: Michelle V. Agins/The New York Times

Sligo native made quite the mark on New York among the rich and famous

JR Smith made his collegiate golf debut at the Elon University Phoenix International. Photograph: Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The former NBA champion has earned a walk-on golf spot at North Carolina A&T

Former North Carolina Courage head coach Paul Riley is the latest in a long line of American senior sporting figures to face allegations of abuse. Photograph: Brad Smith/Getty Images.

Dysfunctional cult of the coach has allowed predatory figures to get away with abuse

Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots are set for a big clash with Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Photograph: Kathryn Riley/Getty

Quarterback’s father and his quack doctor confidante Guerrero have been outspoken

13 Nov 1992: Riddick Bowe and Evander Holyfield trade blows during a bout in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Boxing plumbs fresh depths as damaged 54-year-old former champion takes to the ring again

United States fans at the first tee ahead of the 2016 Ryder Cup at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota. Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Declining standards of galleries exacerbated by coarsening of society across America

Trevor Bauer was guaranteed €38 million for this season alone by the Los Angeles Dodgers. Photograph: Sean M Haffey/Getty Images

Los Angeles Dodgers signing Trevor Bauer faces charges of alleged sexual assault

Governor of Pennsylvania John Kinley Tener (1863-1946), throwing out the first ball in the first game of the season at Ebbets Field, Brooklyn, April 14th 1914. Photograph: New York Times

Tener left Ireland aged 10 and became White Sox pitcher then governor of Pennsylvania

Former Washington Spirit coach Richie Burke pictured in 2020. Photograph:  Maddie Meyer/Getty

Women’s football league is growing in popularity but some serious issues remain

Ring playing for Glen Rovers against Sarsfields in 1949. Photo: Irish Examiner archive

Ball in hand and short puck-outs might be dismissed but at least Cork remain constant

 Quarterback Kirk Cousins is one of a number of Minnesota Vikings players refusing to take a Covid-19 vaccine. Photograph: Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

Teams will forfeit match, wages and bonuses if there is an outbreak of Covid-19 during season

Kanye West at a listening event at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia. Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Universal Music Group

Could this set a precedent? U2 at Croke Park? Christy Moore in Newbridge?

Christen Press looks dejected following the USA’s defeat to Sweden in Tokyo. Photograph: Dan Mullan/Getty

Naomi Osaka, the USWNT and sport’s role in the strangest of American culture wars

Fernando Tatis Jr in action for the San Diego Padres. Photograph:  Denis Poroy/Getty

Likes of Fernando Tatis Jr take a loan in exchange for a percentage of future earnings

 Phil Mickelson and Jon Rahm play a practice round together at Royal St George’s on Wednesday ahead of the British Open. Photograph:  Andy Buchanan/AFP via Getty Images

The recent unsealing of a transcript from a 2007 court case shone further light on Lefty

Conor McGregor will fight Dustin Poirier in Las Vegas on Saturday night. Photo: Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Dave Hannigan: Irish fighter’s bouts barely register but cult of celebrity is strong as ever

Martin Braithwaite’s impressive displays with Denmark these past couple of weeks have spawned speculation about a possible transfer to the Premier League. Photograph: Martin Meissner/Getty Images

Denmark striker is working on ways to offer greater opportunities to African-Americans

Sha’Carri Richardson is primed to light up the Olympic Games next month. Photo: Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images

Dave Hannigan: US is about to fall hard for sprinter but associations raise questions

 Former Michicgan head coach Bo Schembechler pictured in 2005. Photograph:  Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

The case of Dr Robert Anderson at the University of Michigan is the latest in a long line in college sports

 In 1928 O’Callaghan was the first citizen of the Irish Free State to win an Olympic gold medal. Photograph: Sean Sexton/Getty Images

America at Large: He signed on to something in the US more showbiz than sport

Floyd Mayweather and Logan Paul face off during a press conference to announce their June 6th fight  at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. Photograph:  Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images

Greatest boxer of his generation prostitutes his fistic legacy one more time

Van Doren agreed to sell hard-up skaters one shoe at a time because their back feet always wore out quicker. Photograph: Getty Images

Vans founder said his company just kept sewing their shoes with moms in mind

Marv Albert became synonymous with the NBA, his distinctive catchphrases segueing from the court into popular culture. File photograph: Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

America at Large: voice of the NBA has been routinely described as an icon, a legend

 Trainer Bob Baffert  raises the trophy after winning the  Kentucky Derby with Medina Spirit, his seventh career Kentucky Derby win, at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Photograph:  Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Evidence suggests sport’s problems go much deeper than top trainer’s indiscretions

Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Joel Glazer holds the Lombardi Trophy after his team defeated the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV in February. Photo: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Those who write the cheques call all of the shots and even get handed the trophies

 Caitlyn Jenner has launched her campaign to become the next governor of California. Photograph: Chelsea Guglielmino/Getty Images

Her intention to run as a Republican could face pushback from both sides of political divide

British boxer Herol Graham with his daughter Natasha after beating Jimmy Price in 1985. His pro career: 48 wins, six defeats and enough blows to the head to wreak havoc on the middleweight contender’s brain. Photograph: Getty Images

New book ‘Damage - The Untold Story of Brain Trauma in Boxing’ is a cautionary tale

Civil rights groups had called for the Masters to be boycotted or moved from Augusta National. Photo: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Baseball governing body has caused division by moving All-Star game from Georgia

 Ty Cobb of the Detroit Tigers slides safely into third base past New York Yankees’ Jimmy Austin during a game at Hilltop Park in 1912 in New York City. Photograph:  Transcendental Graphics/Getty Images

When the Detroit Tigers went on strike in 1912, a 20-year-old student stepped on to the mound

The Syracuse Orange and UConn Huskies tip off to an empty arena in the second round game of the 2021 NCAA Women’s Basketball tournament at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Photograph: Getty Images

Magically, a workout facility was created overnight after public shaming

Marvin Hagler is hoisted aloft after beating Tommy Hearns in Las Vegas in 1985. Photo: George Tiedemann/Sports Illustrated via Getty Images

Passing of sporting icons becoming all too familiar as middle age ticks along

Mark Pavelich pictured back in 1987. Photograph: Donald Black/Star Tribune via Getty Images

America at Large: Huge hits keep coming as tragic case of Mark Pavelich shines light on issue

On March 8th 1971 in New York at the Madison Square Garden, Muhammad Ali lost the first of his three-fight trilogy with Joe Frazier. Photograph: Getty Images

America at Large: Monday is 50th anniversary of first Muhammad Ali-Joe Frazier bout

Rudy Guiliani during the Ernie Els Els for Autism pro-am in 2015. Photo: David Cannon/Getty Images

Former mayor of New York again displayed his own vulgarity with ‘panties’ story

High School basketball players wear face masks during a meeting between the Reading High Red Knights and the Gov Mifflin Mustangs. Photograph: Ben Hasty/Getty

America at Large: sport and schooling continues with different levels of restrictions

Former world heavyweight boxing champion Leon Spinks, who took the crown from Muhammad Ali in 1978 before losing a rematch, died last week aged 67. Photograph: Getty Images)

Most lovable of rogues was grateful for the epic nights he had in a rollercoaster life

Action between Manchester United and Tottenham at Old Trafford in 1913. Photograph: Hulton Archive/Getty

Attempt ahead of FA Cup semi came during a frenetic time for the IRA in Manchester

Conor McGregor was beaten in the second round on his latest return to the Octagon. Photograph: Jeff Bottari/Getty

In the build-up to Dustin Poirier defeat Irish fighter was painted as a father to root for

The Phipps Bridge Estate in South London was a tough part of town but full of fond memories. Photograph: Google Maps

America at Large: Watching 1990 World Cup on one of South London’s toughest estates

Tom Brady with wide receiver Antonio Brown during a match against Washington. Photograph: Patrick Smith/Getty

32-year-old has been accused of sexual assault but has been a key part of Bucs’ playoff run

Jeannie Morris: “I think after being the wife of an NFL player for 10 years before I started working, I knew that all these guys were among the most insecure people in the world.” Photograph: YouTube

An extraordinary life story included rattling through Connemara in 1973 in a campervan

 Georgia Republican Senate candidate Kelly Loeffler takes questions from the media during a rally on December 20th  in Cumming, Georgia. Photograph: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

Elizabeth Williams and her team-mates have made a huge stand against their owner

 Muhammad Ali served eight days in prison in 1968 for a road traffic offence. File photograph: Getty Images

In 1968 he learned ‘the only real equality is in the jail . . . and in the graveyard’

Singer and part owner of the Texas Rangers Charley Pride swings a bat during batting practice at Rangers spring training in 2017. Photo: Max Faulkner/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

First black superstar of the genre died last Saturday after a life chasing his dreams

Nike turned Colin Kaepernick’s discrimination by the NFL into a slick advertising campaign.

The use of Uyghur labour in Chinese factories continues to be a huge cause of concern

Skyler Badillo complained she had been sexually harassed by former Spanish international David Villa. File photograph: Getty Images

Progress for women in sport remains one step forward and two steps back

Business once dominated by Vegas and the mafia is now respectable - but at what cost?

Paul Hornung signs autographs outside the Schaefer Pavilion at the World’s Fair in Flushing Meadows Park in Queens, New York, New York, June 1965. Photo: Walter Leporati/Getty Images

Former “Golden Boy” of the US died at the age of 84 after a battle with dementia

Donald Trump is still refusing to accept defeat in the US presidential election. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Dave Hannigan: Trump presidency has dismissed countless life lessons in four years

American footballer and athlete Jim Thorpe  competing for Carlisle Indian Industrial School at the US Olympic trials in Celtic Park in New York in 1912. Photograph: Topical Press Agency/Getty Images

America at Large: The old ground in Long Island City was the scene of an infamous prohibition riot

US president Donald Trump displays a signed copy of an executive order. Photograph: Drew Angerer/Getty

Media caught up with circus act and failing to notice real changes being made

President despises African-American NBA stars because they are truly self-made men

Sue Bird (L) of the Seattle Storm and soccer player Megan Rapinoe at the WNBA All-Star Game 2019 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Rapinoe questioning why women’s basketball doesn’t get same exposure as soccer

A woman waves a flag during a pro-Trump rally in front of Trump Tower in New York City, New York, earlier this month. Photograph: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

US president’s support in Suffolk County is largely drawn from suburban middle-class

Mike Burke (right) chats to New York Mayor Lindsay in 1971. Photo: Anthony Calvacca/New York Post Archives /(c) NYP Holdings, Inc. via Getty Images

Dave Hannigan: New York franchise poor form has brought Burke’s name back up

Radio personality Rush Limbaugh after being awarded the Medal of Freedom by first lady Melania Trump during  US president Donald Trump’s State of the Union address  in Washington, DC. Photograph: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty

Hannity, Limbaugh and their peers exert significant influence in an increasingly polarised USA

LeBron James  of the Los Angeles Lakers taking part in a pre-season game against the Brooklyn Nets as part of 2019 NBA Global Games China at Mercedes-Benz Arena  in Shanghai, China. Photograph:  Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

Having found his voice late in his 20s, basketball’s best player has let it be heard

Corh hurling legend  Christy Ring in action. Photograph:  Connolly Collection/Sportsfile

Greatest hurler of them all was feted by some of America’s top writers on his trips to US

Colby Covington celebrates  his TKO victory over Tyron Woodley in their welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event in Las Vegas. Photograph: Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Fighter's alt-right, ultra-nationalist, xenophobe schtick is just an act

The hurlers  who toured the United States in 1888, in what became known in the GAA as the ‘American Invasion’

Journalist believed Irish game had the chance to take root in late 19th century America

 Former Notre Dame football coach Lou Holtz speaks during a campaign rally for Republican senate candidate Mike Braun and attended by president Donald Trump at the County War Memorial Coliseum  in Fort Wayne, Indiana in November  2018. Photograph:  Aaron P Bernstein/Getty Images

Former Notre Dame football coach has become a darling of right-wing media

 Franz Beckenbauer of New York Cosmos in 1978: When Ross saw the famous German international   playing at the back on his debut, he phoned down to the dug-out with the immortal advice: “Get the Kraut into midfield! We’re not paying him all that money to play deefence!”    Photograph: Tony Duffy/Allsport

Former New York Cosmos owner Steve Ross’s story a cautionary tale for Dundalk fans

 Shaquille O’Neal speaks  during the 2019 NBA awards  in Santa Monica, California. Photograph: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Turner Sports

The seven foot one, 25 stone former NBA star is universally popular and TV knows it

Chairman and CEO of the New York Jets, Woody Johnson, is Donald Trump’s ambassador to the UK. Photo: George Gojkovich/Getty Images

Controversial figure has been trying to bring British Open to Trump’s Turnberry

Muhammad Ali stands between rounds next to cornerman Drew Bundini Brown during the heavyweight championship against Earnie Shavers at Madison Square Garden on September 29th, 1977 in New York. Photo: Robert Riger/Getty Images

New book recounts the life and times of Muhammad Ali’s famous cornerman

Super Bowl winner Laurent Duvernay-Tardif will sit out this season with the Kansas City Chiefs to work in the medical system in his native Canada. Photograph:  Mark Brown/Getty Images

Pro players are deciding to opt out of the forthcoming season as US battles coronavirus

Los Angeles Dodgers’ Mookie Betts knelt in protest during the national anthem before his debut against the San Francisco Giants. File photograph: EPA

Dave Hannigan: Just eight per cent of major leaguers today are African-American

Dave Hannigan with his sons Charlile and Finn.

As my eldest son left home I reflected on the last two decades and the experiences of life

 DeSean Jackson announced his intention to visit Auschwitz and to continue to educate himself about the suffering of the Jewish people after recent anti-Semitic social media posts. Photograph:  Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Lack of critical response from peers after high-profile sports stars’ social media posts

Notre Dame’s Leprechaun mascot leads out the team ahead of a game against the Ball State Cardinals in 2018. Photograph: Jonathan Daniel/Getty

Logo is worth millions to the Indiana college but is beginning to come under scrutiny

Donald Trump welcomes the Clemson team that won last year’s college football championship to the White House. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Dave Hannigan: Indentured servitude of the system fully exposed by bizarre attitudes

Foxhall Parker Keene owned horses having been a star jockey and polo player.

One of the most famous stars of the Gilded Age had a particular affiliation with Ireland

Maggie Haney (r) with Riley McCusker after her routine in the Artistic Gymnastics Women’s Uneven Bars Final to win the gold medal during the Lima 2019 Pan-American Games. Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP via Getty Images

Dave Hannigan: It’s the same old, depressing story in gymnastics, only the names change

The Fighting O’Sheas - Brian, Rory, Tom and Mike - lived a life that was one-part West Side Story, two-parts The Harder They Fall.

The Dublin-born educator and boxing coach left a huge mark on his adopted city

The lord mayor of Cork’s feat of endurance and the drawn-out circumstances of his death magnified the cause of Irish independence (...)

US president Donald Trump plays golf at Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia last weekend. Photo: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA

US president’s golf exploits widely reported but it doesn’t stop him racking up rounds

Frankie Carbo pictured in 1959. Photograph: Getty

Frankie Carbo’s fearsome reputation let him control the sport in a post-prohibition US

Rocky has been just one of the films Dr Matt Schwartz has used when giving speeches to his staff. Photo: Valery Sharifulin\TASS via Getty Images

Dr Matt Schwartz has been motivating staff with lines from Rocky and other films

 Justin Rohrwasser has some worrying artwork on his left arm. Photograph: Getty Images

Kicker has a symbol associated with a right-wing militia on his left arm

 Donald Trump gets taken to the mat by ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin. Trump  featured so often in cameo roles in the WWE  that he was eventually inducted into the company’s Hall of Fame.  Photograph: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Florida reclassifying WWE as “essential industry” only possible in weirdest of times

The US flag is seen at half-mast on the Brooklyn Bridge in New York on April 11th. Photograph: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

The numbers of dead are hard to fathom but the pages of obituaries shed some light on their lives

English music hall entertainer Marie Lloyd (1870 - 1922) at her home in Golders Green, London, with her husband Bernard Dillon. Photo: Topical Press Agency/Getty Images

Dillon and his famous wife Marie Lloyd were the Posh and Becks of Edwardian Britain

Northwell Health chief executive Michael Dowling talks to New York governor Andrew Cuomo during a news conference at the Jacob Javits Convention Center  in New York City. Photograph: Noam Galai/Getty Images

Limerick native and boss of a major healthcare provider drafted in to help New York's response

Marcos Llorente scores Atletico Madrid’s  second goal during the Champions League round of 16 second leg match against  Liverpool  at Anfield. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

The natural rhythms of our sporting life have been thrown all out of kilter

Tipperary-born Paddy Ryan played a key role in how boxing would be promoted after his legendary fight against John L Sullivan in 1882.

Tipperary-born boxer to take his place in the International Boxing Hall of Fame

 Actor Michael Caine and England player Bobby Moore of the POW XI celebrate during a match against Germany for the film Escape to Victory. Photograph:  Allsport UK /Allsport

Late actor turned in a fine performance as the ‘good German officer’ in war-time film

Joe Biden:  now regarded as the Democratic  Party’s main hope of unseating a White House incumbent who lies even as he breathes. Photograph: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Trump so mendacious that his relationship with factual truth is practically non-existent

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