Saturday, Dec 10, 2022

On This Day In Sport, April 17: VAR Drama Sees Spurs Home, James Anderson Betters Ian Botham

On This Day In Sport, April 17: VAR Drama Sees Spurs Home, James Anderson Betters Ian Botham

Manchester City and Tottenham might be on lockdown right now but a year ago they served up an all-time Champions League classic

James Anderson celebrates with England team-mates. File Photo

April 17 is a date that will live long in the memory of Tottenham fans after their team held out to claim a Champions League triumph for the ages last year. (More Sports News)

Five years ago, James Anderson became England's all-time leading wicket-taker in Test matches – and he certainly was not done there.

And, with the NFL Draft looming, we are able to look back to 1999 and the New Orleans Saints' great Ricky Williams gamble.

Here, we focus on those memorable sporting moments to have occurred on this day. 

2019 – VAR heartbreak for Sterling and Guardiola

If the first leg of the all-Premier League quarter-final between Tottenham and Manchester City amounted to a cagey offering in north London, the return in Manchester eight days later was anything but.

Raheem Sterling cancelled out City's 1-0 first-leg deficit in four minutes but Son Heung-min, who scored in the initial encounter, struck a quick-fire double to leave the hosts needing to score three unanswered goals. Bernardo Silva and Sterling had accounted for two of those by the midway point of a crazy first half.

Sergio Aguero put Pep Guardiola's men 4-2 ahead on the night and in front for the first time in the tie before the hour, only for substitute Fernando Llorente to bundle home decisively and survive a VAR review for handball.

The video official was not so helpful to City when Sterling thought he had completed a hat-trick in stoppage time, briefly sparking scenes of delirium. Aguero had a heel offside in the build-up and Spurs went through on away goals, with the aggregate score locked at 4-4.

Tottenham overcame Ajax in the semi-finals in similarly dramatic circumstances before losing 2-0 in the final against Liverpool – Jurgen Klopp's team having been pipped to Premier League glory by domestic treble winners City.

2015 – Peerless Anderson passes Botham

Anderson marked his 100th Test match in style when he persuaded Denesh Ramdin to edge to first slip on the final day of England's first Test against West Indies in Antigua.

It moved the Lancashire paceman on to 384 scalps in cricket's longest format, surpassing the great Ian Botham as England's most prolific bowler in the process.

West Indies were able to hold out for a draw, but Anderson has continued to rack up the numbers in a stunning career.

Now with 151 Test caps, the 37-year-old has 584 wickets – more than any seamer in history.

Anderson's wickets have cost an average of 26.83, and he claimed his 28th five-wicket haul in Tests in his most recent outing, against South Africa in January.

1999 – The Ricky Williams trade

Ricky Williams entered the 1999 NFL Draft after setting an NCAA record for rushing yards with the Texas Longhorns – efforts that saw him scoop the Heisman Trophy.

New Orleans coach Mike Ditka was determined to get his man and went to extraordinary lengths to secure Williams as the fifth overall selection, trading every pick he had to the Washington Redskins.

Williams and Ditka were then famously pictured together as a bride and groom on the front cover of ESPN Magazine, accompanied by the headline "For Better or Worse".

In the end, the gamble backfired as the Saints struggled to a 3-13 season and Ditka was fired.

The Cleveland Browns made Kentucky quarterback Tim Couch the number one pick. Couch was one of five signal callers selected in the first round along with Donovan McNabb, Akili Smith, Daunte Culpepper and Cade McNown.

Of that mixed bag, McNabb went on to enjoy the most successful career – the six-time Pro Bowl pick reaching the Super Bowl with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2004.


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