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  Monday, 9 September, 2002, 12:26 GMT 13:26 UK
Me and my big mouth

If you saw Greg Rusedski this weekend, the chances are he was in disguise.

The British number two had all but written Pete Sampras' sporting obituary when the American dumped him out of this year's US Open.

"He's a step and a half slow coming to the net," declared Rusedski.

"He's a great player from the past. You're used to seeing Pete Sampras, 13-time Grand Slam champion. It's not the same player here."

Well at least he got one prediction right - Pete Sampras is now the 14-time Grand Slam champion courtesy of his victory over fellow-veteran Andre Agassi.

But Rusedski is not the first sports star to put his foot in it - Scotland's Kevin Kyle suggested all anyone did in the Faroe Islands was go fishing - before his side got well and truly reeled in.

And let's not forget some of the golden oldies from the past....


David Lloyd
David Lloyd: Blind leading the blind

David Lloyd

The former Davis Cup captain was asked for his expert opinion before Great Britain's tie with Ecuador at Wimbleon in 2000.

"Even the blind school should beat Ecuador on grass," he confidently predicted. Britain lost 2-1.


Uli Hoeness:
The former German international pulled no punches ahead of last year's World Cup qualifier against England in Munich.

"How are England going to win in Germany?" mocked Hoeness. "It hasn't happened for 100 years. I have no doubts whatsoever that Germany will quite clearly thrash England."

In the event, they quite clearly didn't - with England romping to a 5-1 victory.

Still, at least Hoeness wasn't alone. German midfielder Sebastian Deisler had boasted: "I am glad that David Beckham will be fit. Now England will have no excuses when we beat them."

You've got to laugh.


Kevin Keegan:

The former England manager has a habit of being a jinx to the national side.

Kevin Keegan
Oops, I did it again

In the 1998 World Cup, he was co-commentating on the Romania game and declared: "There's only one team that can win this now, and that's England."

Five minutes later,Dan Petrescu fired in Romania's winner.

Worse was to come when England played Argentina. The match was hanging on a knife-edge during a penalty shoot-out, when up stepped David Batty.

Commentator Brian Moore turned to Keegan and said: "'Quickly Kevin - you know Batty well, will he score this penalty?"

"Yes" came back the confident reply. Two seconds later, the kick was saved and England were out of the tournament.


Tony Greig:

The former England cricket captain really put his size 14s in it before the home Test series with the West Indies in 1976.

"We'll make them grovel," he boasted - which, with the benefit of hindsight, was just asking for trouble.

And so it proved as the Windies shoved the bold claims right down Greig's throat with a 3-0 annihilation.


Mike Tyson:

If ever there was a sporting mis-match it was the 1990 pairing up of Tyson, the undisputed heavyweight champion with journeyman Buster Douglas, a 42-1 shot to win the match.

Buster Dougals
Buster gut: Douglas upset the odds to beat Tyson

Respected boxing journalist Ed Schulyer was in no doubt what the result would be when he arrived in Tokyo to cover the fight.

At the airport, Schulyer was asked how long he expected to be in Japan. "About 90 seconds," he replied.

Wrong - Douglas produced arguably the biggest sporting shock of all time by winning in the 10th round.


Ronnie O'Sullivan:

The unpredictable snooker genius has never been afraid to say what he thinks - but even he surpassed himself this year.

After reaching the semi-finals of the World Championship, where he was due to play Stephen Hendry, O'Sullivan launched an astonishing attack on the Scot.

"The most satisfying thing for me would be to send him home to Scotland as quickly as possible so he can have the summer off," he blasted.

Hendry promptly despatched O'Sullivan 17-13.

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