Yesterday was Father’s Day, and turned out to be a great day to watch sports on TV.
Furthermore, if you watched with your kids, a good life lesson came out of it as well.
The day started, at least in our household, watching soccer on ESPN. The match didn’t seem too promising, so I didn’t think we’d be watching too long. New Zealand, ranked 78th in the world, was taking on the great Italian team, the defending World Cup champions and ranked 5th in world this year.
But the match quickly became interesting. New Zealand scored the first goal, seven minutes into the contest. We are not soccer aficionados in my house, but it became clear that Italy was really the dominant team, as almost all of the action had them continually assaulting the Kiwi’s on the New Zealand side of the field.
Italy did indeed score to tie up the game, but New Zealand was able, somehow, impossibly, to keep them from scoring another goal. And, incredibly, New Zealand had a great chance to score another goal itself in the second half, that just went wide of the net.
It was live sports at its best: Exciting, edge-of-your seat action. The announcers said it was one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history.
Later, we switched over to NBC to watch the final round of the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, one of the most beautiful—and toughest—golf courses in the world.
We had watched Saturday’s round, with a surge by Tiger Woods and great play by Dustin Johnson, who surged into the lead.
What a set-up for Sunday’s final round. The seemingly cool as ice Johnson being pursued by some of the best players in the game: Woods, Phil Mickelson and Enrie Els—the great Els looking for a second Open win more than a decade after his first one.
Sunday was equally exhilarating to watch, as Johnson completely fell apart and Tiger, Els and Mickelson weren’t up to the task. Meanwhile, Graeme McDowell, who had played so well on Friday, but had been somewhat overshadowed on Saturday by Johnson’s great round, had the stuff of a champion yesterday, pressure be damned.
And Frenchman Gregory Havret continued his steady play yesterday to make a run at the championship as well.
The lesson of the day was the importance of perseverance. Sports shows us this all of the time, but especially yesterday, with the accomplishments of the New Zealand soccer team and McDowell.
For all of us dads who watched these events with our kids, that lesson that they saw really made it a satisfying Father’s Day.#