Anorak News | Best End

Best End

by | 2nd, November 2005

‘“THE BEST EVER,” says the Sun’s headline in deepest black ink. “5,000 FANS SEE LEGEND COLLAPSE.”

‘Dead? What d’yer mean dead?’

Put these two statements together and it sounds very much like George Best, the legendary footballer, and yet more legendary drinker, has dribbled his last.

But it’s not George who’s died. As the Star says, the ailing former footballer managed to give his agent Phil Hughes a big smile and nodded that he was feeling better as he was hooked up to a kidney dialysis machine.

That’s just great news. But if Best is doing fine, which sporting legend has gone to that big awards dinner in the sky?

It’s none other than racing thoroughbred Best Mate, whose long face hangs over the Mail’s front page like a chestnut pall.

“Britain’s favourite racehorse collapsed and died during a race yesterday,” says the caption. “It’s the tragedy of best Mate.”

Inside the paper, spread out over two pages, Mail readers get to see Best Mate die from a heart attack. In front of punters at the William Hill Hadon Gold Cup Chase, Exeter, age caught up with the racehorse.

Like an equine Jock Stein – the Scotland football manager who famously died from a heart attack during a game against Wales – Best Mate’s final act was played out at a sporting venue.

Over four pictures readers get to see Besty totter, fall, slump and then die. It’s a similar macabre scene in the Sun, where Best collapses at the last.

The paper’s Claude Duval, billed as “THE PUNTERS’ PAL”, says Best Mate was “simply the greatest”. Oh? “If he had been a boxer, he would have been Ali. A footballer, he would have been Pele. A golfer, Tiger Woods.”

And if he’d been a comedian, he’d have been Tommy Cooper…’

Posted: 2nd, November 2005 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink