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The week in numbers: w/e 30/10/11

McIlroy walked away with a cheque for $2m (image courtesy of Wikipedia)

2,000,000 – In dollars, the prize collected by Rory McIlroy for winning the inaugural (and non-official) Shanghai Masters – $560,000 more than he earned for winning the US Open in June. McIlroy beat Anthony Kim in a sudden-death playoff after squandering a three-shot lead going into the final round.

16 – By setting the fastest time in qualifying for the inaugural Indian Grand Prix, Sebastian Vettel recorded Red Bull‘s 16th pole of 2011, a new record for one team in a single season.

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High-five for Arsenal as van Persie shreds Chelsea’s defence

Chelsea 3 Arsenal 5

Lampard 14, Terry 45, Mata 80; van Persie 36, 85, 90+2, Santos 49, Walcott 55

A watershed moment. A corner being turned. Light at the end of the tunnel. Accurate in a terse sort of way, but such truisms do not come close to telling the full story of an astonishing game at Stamford Bridge which will linger long in the Premier League annals. Arsenal recovered from going behind twice and then conceding a late equaliser to run out 5-3 winners over a bewildered Chelsea whose once-vaunted defence was in tatters by the end. Robin van Persie will grab the headlines with a clinical hat-trick, but this was a performance of great character and courage by all eleven men to put the lie to the notion that the Gunners are a one-man team.

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Arsenal progress, but it’s no walk in the Park

Arsenal 2 Bolton 1

Arshavin 53, Park 56; Muamba 47

Who says Arsène Wenger deprioritises the Carling Cup? On a night where Bolton had the lion’s share of the chances, Arsenal had to come from behind to secure a place in the quarter-finals for the ninth consecutive year (extending their own record) with a battling performance in which the senior players employed down the spine of the team stepped up and provided the leadership required by their younger teammates. Goals by Andrey Arshavin and Park Chu-Young – his first for the club – within nine minutes of former Gunner Fabrice Muamba‘s opener were ultimately enough as Arsenal rode their luck to progress to the last eight.

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Forté steamrollers Tampa as Bears ground Bucs’ aerial attack

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 18 Chicago Bears 24

Despite a spirited fourth quarter fight-back by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Wembley Stadium, the Chicago Bears‘ defense came through in the clutch as D J Moore snuffed out a last-ditch Bucs drive with a fourth interception of Josh Freeman with 37 seconds remaining. In an error-strewn game, the two teams combined for six turnovers, 15 penalties and a safety. Running back Matt Forté was the difference-maker for Chicago, rushing for 145 yards as the Bears joined Tampa on a record of 4-3 as both teams move into their bye week.

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The week in numbers: w/e 23/10/11

Simoncelli died in a crash at the Malaysia MotoGP on Sunday (image courtesy of Wikipedia)

24 – Age of Italian MotoGP rider Marco Simoncelli, who died after a crash at the Malaysian MotoGP in Sepang. He competed in 34 MotoGP races for Honda, setting two poles and recording two podium finishes. It was the first fatality in MotoGP since Japan’s Daijiro Katoh died after a crash at the 2003 Japanese GP, while last year Japan’s Shoya Tomizawa died in a Moto2 race in San Marino.

7 – Britain’s track cycling team dominated the European Track Championships in Apeldoorn, Holland, winning seven gold medals in the 13 events. No other country won more than one gold. They won the men’s keirin (Matt Crampton), omnium (Ed Clancy) and team pursuit, and the women’s keirin (Victoria Pendleton), omnium (Laura Trott), team sprint and team pursuit.

1 – At the halfway point of the group phase in the Champions League only Real Madrid still have a 100% record, although ten out of the 32 teams remain unbeaten.

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