Sports Bizarre

Sports Bizarre

Titus O’Reily and Mick Molloy are on the hunt for the most bizarre stories to ever occur in the world of sport. Sports Bizarre delves into the history of sport to find the stories that you wouldn’t believe if they hadn’t happened. No sport is off-limits, athletics, swimming, rugby, American Football, cricket, baseball, badminton, motorsports, tennis and even that sport on the ice with brooms Sports Bizarre is available wherever you get your podcasts and on YouTube.

Episodes

December 4, 2022 41 min

It's part of five of our look at the beautiful corruption that is FIFA; we pick up with Sepp Blatter still ascendant, but the cracks are starting to appear. 

Facing challenges for the FIFA presidency and numerous legal problems, Sepp tries to stay one step ahead, but unbeknownst to him, one member of the FIFA committee has begun working for the FBI and is wearing a wire. And yes, that is true, not a made-up bit.

Titus O'Rei...

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It’s part four of our look at the history of FIFA, which means it's time to introduce two new fun characters to our story, Chuck Blazer and Fred Warner, two men so corrupt even other FIFA delegates were shocked by them, which is saying something.

We then cover the awarding of the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 Cup to Qatar and the delightful mess that was.

Titus O'Reily and Mick Molloy then discuss how even Vladimir ...

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It’s part three of our look at the history of FIFA, and in this episode, we introduce a young man with a sparkle in his eye, Sepp Blatter.

Part Bond villain, part, well actually, all Bond villain; under Blatter, FIFA made the final step towards adopting corruption as the sole reason for its existence.

Titus O'Reily and Mick Molloy examine the rise of Blatter, from President of a pressure group encouraging women to wear suspende...

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It’s part two of our look at the history of FIFA, and its somewhat eccentric accounting practices.

In this episode, we look at João Havelange, President of FIFA from 1974 to 1998, who brought in the money and bought the votes to be President.

Titus O’Reily and Mick Molloy examine the career of João Havelange, the man who taught Sepp Blatter everything.

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With the FIFA World Cup in Qatar fast approaching, we begin a multi-episode dive into the corruption that led to FIFA thinking a country the size of the Falkland Islands, with no infrastructure and temperatures hovering around the 'too hot to play football' mark, could host arguably the biggest sporting event in the world.

To kick off, Titus O'Reily and Mick Molloy examine the problems with Qatar and look back at the fo...

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November 6, 2022 56 min

On 4 June 1974, the Cleveland Indians decided to host a ten-cent beer night to attract fans; beer at the stadium normally cost 65 cents, so ten cents was a real incentive. 

The Indians were in a 30-year slump at the time, as was the city, their river would catch fire with alarming regularity, so the scene was set for trouble. Oh, and it was a full moon.

The result was pure, unbridled chaos. There were streakers, firecrackers, a wom...

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October 30, 2022 46 min

Frederick Charles Standish left England in 1852 under a false name and fleeing moneylenders. Landing in Melbourne, he was forced to live on the goldfields and run a sly grog business.

Yet, just six years later, he would be the colony's Chief Commissioner of police, be a pallbearer at Robert O’Hara Burke's funeral, invent the Melbourne Cup, become a key player in the formation of the VRC and lead, very unsuccessfully, the hu...

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October 23, 2022 54 min

Timothy John Rossovich was a star defensive end and linebacker at the University of Southern California and the Philadelphia Eagles, but it was off the field where his genius shone.

Rossovich was famous for surreal pranks that included chewing glass, setting himself on fire and opening his mouth in a meeting to speak, only for a sparrow to fly out.

After football, Rossovich would go on to be an actor and stuntman, appearing in "...

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October 16, 2022 43 min

Robert Standish Sievier was one of the most colourful personalities of the Victorian and Edwardian eras, a man who revolutionised bookmaking in Australia before returning to England, where his horse Sceptre won four of the five English classics.

Joining the army and fighting in South Africa at 16, Sievier would go bankrupt countless times, father seventeen illegitimate progeny and be involved in some of the highest profile cases of...

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October 9, 2022 59 min

Contracts in sports contain clauses so weird they are scarcely believable.

There are clauses banning players from going to nightclubs, but there's also been a clause insisting a player got drunk after every game.

Contracts have included clauses for free sushi at all times, a demand a player ate sheep's testicles, a ban on extravagant haircuts and a bonus for growing a moustache.

Titus O'Reily and Mick Molloy examine the...

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October 2, 2022 43 min

In an All-Star career, Dock Ellis managed to win a World Series, pitch a no-hitter on LSD, hit every batter that came to the plate in a game and set a clubhouse on fire.

But for every bit of craziness, Ellis was also ahead of his time as a spokesperson on a range of issues from free agency to racism while devoting his life to combating alcohol and drug abuse.

Titus O'Reily and Mick Molloy look at the complex career of one of th...

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September 25, 2022 44 min

At the 2000 Paralympic games, a new category, Basketball for the Intellectually Disabled, was to be included in the games.

It got the head of the Spanish Paralympics Fernando Martin Vicente thinking, what if you could get people who weren’t intellectually disabled but who could act like they were?

Surely that would make it easier to win?

Titus O’Reily and Mick Molloy look at one of the most outrageous cheating scams in history and ...

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September 18, 2022 44 min

The 1900 Paris Olympics were a disaster of planning and execution, to the point many athletes never even knew they’d participated in an Olympics.

So poorly organised were the games that the discus field was too narrow and throws went into the crowd, while the long jumpers turned up to discover they had to dig their own pit.

As well as standard Olympic fare, there was cannon shooting, hot air ballooning, pigeon shooting, kite flying...

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September 11, 2022 45 min

In the 1930s, several English football clubs experimented with a new treatment sweeping the globe, ingesting, injecting or transplanting testicular tissue from monkeys into people. 

So widespread was the practice that the 1939 FA Cup final between Wolverhampton and Portsmouth became known as the ‘Monkey Gland Final’.

Titus O'Reily and Mick Molloy, look back at arguably the strangest doping scandal of all time and the coaching c...

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September 4, 2022 58 min

Former Chicago Bull Dennis Rodman has recently offered to go to Russia to talk to President Vladimir Putin about the imprisoned WNBA star Brittney Griner.

While Rodman claims somewhat falsely that "I know Putin too well," there’s one dictator he does know well, North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un.

Between 2013 and 2018, Rodman made numerous trips to North Korea, calling Jong-un a ‘friend for life’. At one point, Rodman...

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August 28, 2022 39 min

Sporting curses are always strange, but perhaps none is stranger than the Curse of Colonel Sanders, which has seen the Japanese baseball team, the Hanshin Tigers, suffer decades of poor performances after offending the spirit of the KFC founder.

Attempts to lift the curse have included fans apologizing to KFC store managers and making offerings to the statues of the Colonel outside of restaurants.

Titus O’Reily and Mick Molloy look...

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August 21, 2022 58 min

In 1893, John Wren, unemployed and from a poor family, set up the Collingwood Tote, an illegal betting shop that would achieve mythical status, depending on who you asked, as either a den of vice ruining the lives of many or as a symbol of the working class fighting back against discriminatory laws.

In its twenty years of operating, the police attempted to raid the tote so many times and failed to the point they gave up completely.

...

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August 14, 2022 43 min

The 1967 Intercontinental Cup saw Scottish club Celtic and Argentinian side Racing Club face off across three brutal matches.

In one match, the Celtic goalkeeper was knocked unconscious by a bottle thrown from the crowd before the game; despite this, the game still went ahead with a very nervous backup keeper.

Reuters described another match as "a bar-room brawl with soccer skills abandoned for swinging fists, flying boots and ...

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August 8, 2022 49 min

Albert Griffiths, or ‘Young Griffo’ began life in the slums of Sydney as the leader of a local street gang. This proved to be the perfect training for boxing, and before he was twenty, he was the World Featherweight Champion.

Moving to the United States, Young Griffo would become one of the greatest boxers of all time, despite never training and rarely fighting sober.

In a career spanning 232 fights, Girffo would lose only nine, de...

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July 31, 2022 55 min

The 1904 Olympics in St Louis, Missouri, were a disaster in every way possible. Held over six months alongside the World’s Fair, it had a human zoo and a ‘savage Olympics’ pitting various indigenous groups against each other.

But the marathon would be the biggest mess; competitors were refused water, runners were chased off course by dogs, there was cheating, several near deaths, and the first recorded case of doping in Olympic his...

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