NFL Browns v Vikings 29th October 2017

Well I totally got the bug last time  and decided to go to yet another game of NFL but this time at Twickenham rather than Wembley and there are pros and cons with both but essentially the one thing they have in common is that they are both a brilliant spectacle for the supporters. My wife, cousin and his Viking supporting wife got to go this time

Firstly Twickenham is a little awkward to get to by public transport. It seems to takes a few connection from basically anywhere and the queues from the station to stadium are long and slow BUT there’s plenty of good food along the way if you’re peckish. They even handed out these little american football stress balls and they were fun throwing around, I thought this has got the potential for disaster later and yep sure enough a few got slung at the mascot but all in good spirit and no harm done….. well at least I think so
So inside the stadium the seats were AMAZING and we even had a little ledge to put our many many beers on and the view was brilliant. I would say the view seems better vs Wembley.
I am not yet expert enough to run commentary on the game in much detail but the Browns had a real go in the first half despite pre match talk of a whitewash and were still in the game but you just felt the Vikings had something else left in the tank, and so it proved as they ran out eventual winners 
But during the 2nd half the ground got colder and colder and we were absolutely freezing. I ended up buying a hat ( Redskins as is my team so apologies to Browns/Vikings fans – blame the 1980s and poor decision making )

Final points of interest 
1) No cheerleaders – what was that all about? Is this a Cleveland thing as they were the home team?

2) The mascot – he was hilarious and brilliant entertainment. I couldn’t help but grab a selfie with him #DawgPound 

3 – Congratulations Minnesota Vikings who deserved the victory and I think the expression is #SkolVikings 
Seriously don’t miss out next season and get yourself to one of the games, it’s great fun and my love for the game is well and truly back 
It’s been emotional 

Stylish Smithy 


24th September 2017 NFL Wembley – Jacksonville Jaguars v Baltimore Ravens 

Another weekend another sporting event and this time it was the NFL at Wembley. Obviously it was slightly overshadowed at the beginning with the Trump vs Players shenanigans at the national anthem but luckily it didn’t dampen the enthusiasm from the 80,000 plus crowd. In fact during the anthem it was quite the spectacle 

As a sport NFL is right up there as one for the fans. When watching it on the TV you can get bored at the breaks with the seemingly endless runs of TV commercials but in the stadium there is always something going on. If it’s not cheerleaders it’s massive beach balls in the crowd or T-shirt cannons firing T-shirts into the arm stretched supporters. It’s amazing how after a few beers how badly you want a T-shirt you’ve never seen before 😂
Also we played American Football bingo, essentially you cross off every team shirt you see in the crowd until every team has been covered. Nobody won so by that rationale I can only assume that the most unpopular side in London are the Buffalo Bills…… not a single shirt did we spot

The game was totally one sided ( despite experts saying the Ravens would win easily ) and the Jaguars or Jagwars in an American accent won 44-7 with the Jaguars Tight End Marcedes Lewis scoring 3 touchdowns.
All in all it’s a great day out and I would recommend it to everyone. It’s so American in every detail. You can buy Krispy Kreme doughnuts in the ground, you drink Bud outside the ground. The hot dogs were longer than my arms and the nachos had that disgusting tasteless melted cheese that is only popular in the US
I had to get an NFL shirt before I went and as a Redskins fan from 30 years ago I kept my loyalty, frankly the whole crowd wears an American football kit, cap or related apparel and failure to do so makes you look the the bloke who didn’t wear fancy dress to a party when everyone else did.

If you want one you need to shop for an official shirt, there are a lot of cheap alternatives that aren’t worth the risk so only shop here

On the way home I met a load of Ravens fans that had actually flown in from Baltimore and I said “you must be gutted?” They replied “noooo we’ve had a great time coming to London for the football” 

It was that moment I realised that the overseas games are a great idea for the sport and allows Americans the chance of a holiday as well as following their heros in sport. What’s not to like?

Hurry as there are still tickets for Twickenham game available, I’d hate you to miss out ( avoid the Nachos )

It’s been emotional 

Stylish Smithy

England v W Indies at Lords – Saturday 9th September 2017

For all sports fans who love nothing more than a full day with good company in a safe and comfortable environment then look no further than a day at the cricket at Lords. My friend and his family are members and always invite us and we were lucky enough to get into the full rebuilt Warner Stand and whilst it’s lost a little bit of its old charm it’s still a great place to watch sport

As you look at the picture above we were in the upper tier and for reference the further right you go as you see it, the more restricted the view is as the adjoining stand juts out just a tad, well worth knowing but anyway, why test cricket I hear you cry…..?
Well for starters everyone is allowed to bring a bottle of wine/champagne or 2 x 500ml cans in with them and as much food as you wish so despite a riches of food choices available in the venue you don’t have to break the bank and instead have a constant picnic with your friends…… what is not to like so far?
So we were a party of 7, should have been 8 but somebody always drops out right??? ( Baby sitter issues in this instance ) so as you can now start to picture in your minds that’s 5 bottles of champagne and 2 bottles of red wine and oversized cool bags crammed full with sandwiches, crisps, pork pies, scotch eggs, sausage rolls, cakes and finally cheese and biscuits 

So about the test match itself, it was slightly in the balance until the 1st over of the day and Jimmy Anderson took on from where he left off the day before and took wickets throughout the morning and eventually returned figures of 7 for 22 runs off 20.1 overs which quite frankly is staggering but with the overcast conditions being perfect for the bowler not totally surprising….. he really is the best bowler in the world with traditional English conditions.
This left England with a very simple chase of 107 to win. Ordinary a simple chase but with the amount of wickets falling over the last few days  we did have a small amount of risk but in the end England were comfortable and finished with 107 for the loss of 1 wicket ( Cook ) and the real positive was Stoneman (40) and Westley (44) both not out when slightly out of nick in the series.

We also said farewell to the legend that is Henry Blofeld from radio commentary as this was his last test and his lap of  was met with cheers and tears for the great man. I can honestly say were it not for my grandad in person and Blowers on the radio my love for cricket would probably not exist. So from a personal note “Thanks Blowers”

As the crowds filtered out we fueled by champagne and wine ( and the odd beer ) made idiots of ourselves around the statues batting and bowling as you do then made our way back to St Johns Wood tube station and home.
Trust me cricket is a great day out either as a group of lads, ladies or friends and partners and Lords is not called the home of cricket for nothing. It is pure class, stewards are friendly and you can’t fail to have a great day. 

Go on – try it

It’s been emotional 

Stylish Smithy