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   Monday, 20 January, 2003, 14:47 GMT
Dennis no menace
BBC Sport Online columnist Derek on Bergkamp's alleged push on Lee Bowyer and Lleyton Hewitt's defeat.

Dirty Dennis

Referees seem only too keen to smooth Arsenal's path to glory at the moment.

The Pires dive was an affront to loveys everywhere. Lomas was dismissed for being too ugly to be seen near the pretty French forwards.

Dennis Bergkamp (left) and Lee Bowyer
Bergy was quick to slap Bowyer down

Then Bergkamp gets away with a blatant slap of Lee Bowyer's face, for which we can only congratulate the Dutchman. Someone's got to do it, haven't they?

Hilariously, Wenger suggested that there was no intent in the use of the arm.

He said of Dennis, "Why, if he had the ball, would he want to slap Bowyer?" Well precisely because it's little Lee. Why else?

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Hewitt Blew It

Another Aussie legend crumbles in front of his people. Like Rafter and Cash before him, Hewitt can't cope when the crowd is made up of supporters.

The Rat-Faced Boy likes it best when no-one likes him.

Lleyton Hewitt
Hewitt took his defeat well

Perhaps the Aussie fans could start treating him like Muttiah the Pariah and he might do something.

Instead he gets beat by a bizarre collection of vowels. Still, his lass Clijsters roars on. They are a lovely couple. As my missus put it, it's the children you've got to worry for, isn't it?

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The Boy Punter

I've argued long and hard to keep Michael Owen up front for England - often I've said that I don't know a better striker in England.

And as betters go, the boy Michael is making Stan Bowles look like a Grand National granny with a pin in her hand.

Mick Channon, Kevin Keegan and Stan Bowles
Bowles (right) could not pass a betting shop

He's Michael Owin' as far as the William Hill's is concerned. But then again what the hell else is he going to do with all that loot?

It's a relief to find out that he's got a vice. Whether he's blown two grand or two million, I don't suppose he's broken the law.

Obviously he could do with a better tipster than Mystic Meg or whoever he's getting advice from.

By the way, the next time he's clean through with just the keeper to beat, I'll lay you 2-1 he cocks it up. Again.

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Fireside Fergie

Poor Sir Alex (it's hard to write the 'sir' down without coughing up bile) must be getting on a bit given the news that he's had a carpet and a radiator installed in the home dug-out.

What's next, a tartan blanket for his knees and a flask tucked away in his inside pocket?

I think it's going a bit far meself. I mean if he wants to feel warmer, he could just have a good shout at himself.

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Cricket Conscience

Blimey! Apparently some of the England players are having doubts about going to play in Zimbabwe.

Let's hope one of them is Steve Harmison. Nasser says some of the England team are 'split in their minds' as some of their running between the wickets proves.

Steve Harmison
Stick to football, Stevie

Mugabe isn't going to be embarrassing anyone who shows up, mind, according to the ECB.

Why, what does he normally do? Get a bit p***ed and slag off the players' wives? Get his guitar out and sing Ebony and Ivory?

Apparently if you disrespect Mugabe, you go to prison, which might just sharpen our lads' minds.

If not, they could give Errol Stewart a bell. But hellfire, it's nice to think that they are giving it some thought. Have your say

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