Alec Swann - Sporting perspective isn’t a crime

Northamptonshire Telegraph's sports writers Jon Dunham, Jim Lyon and Alec Swann.
Northamptonshire Telegraph's sports writers Jon Dunham, Jim Lyon and Alec Swann.

Expectation is the theme for this week’s offering.

Or more precisely, the usually unreasonable, often unrealistic and in the main completely out of context expectation that is generated by the most minor of sporting occurences.

This was emphasised, well sharpened in my case, by the Twitter fallout from Northamptonshire’s victory in their Twenty20 opener against Gloucestershire last Friday night.

If you weren’t at the County Ground or missed Sky Sports’ coverage, you won’t have seen a very accomplished performance which was the continuation of the good form from the other two formats of the domestic game.

Alternatively, as is the way these days, you may have followed the game on the aforementioned social media site and if you took everything that was served up at face value you would know that the Steelbacks are a dead cert to pick up the Friends Life t20 trophy in Birmingham next month.

Ignore the fact that there are nine group games remaining and a couple of knockout games to negotiate, one win is more than enough to guarantee overall success.

Of course it’s all relatively harmless stuff and shouldn’t be taken too seriously but that doesn’t mean that it will cease.

If the Saints get the better of Exeter on the opening day of the Premiership season in September there are plenty of fans who will announce them as champions.

Should the Cobblers win at York in their first game then promotion will be a mere formality.

Roger Federer out of Wimbledon at an early stage? Andy Murray can’t fail to win.

Laura Robson into the second round? You would think she had just discovered the cure for a terrible ailment.

Alastair Cook wins the toss at Trent Bridge next week? He might as well take the Ashes urn home with him.

Out of context, out of kilter and, for want of a better phrase, out of mind.

Sports fans are famously myopic when it comes to their respective teams - that isn’t going to change - but a touch of perspective wouldn’t go amiss.

Let a season or tournament run its course, or at least get fully into the swing of things, before any adulation is offered and realise that there are always plenty more competitors or teams involved, all of whom will have the same target.

Restraint, restraint.

Oh, who am I kidding, I’ve just seen that the football side I follow are about to sign a new striker so I’m going to order my ‘Newcastle United Champions 2013-14’ commerative t-shirt right away.