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May 13, 2021

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HOT OR NOT: Fair play to Swansea City for leading social media boycott


HOT OR NOT: Fair play to Swansea City for swinging back at organisations with little regard to the toxic sludge passing through their social media platforms… but it’s been a bad week for the Tokyo Olympics

  • Swansea became the first football club to boycott social media this week
  • Chess grandmaster’s Hikaru Nakamura and Eric Hansen were embroiled in fight
  • Romanian official Octavian Sovre asked for Erling Haaland’s autograph
  • Several events ahead of the Tokyo Olympics this summer have been canned 

It’s Hot or Not time again as Sportsmail’s Riath Al-Samarrai reveals what’s been making him feel warm and what’s been leaving him cold this week.

HOT 

SWANSEA CITY 

It has been a while since they took a lead of any description but fair play to them for being the first to boycott social media for a week. 

A number of clubs weighed up the same manoeuvre but worried too much about financial ramifications, so good on Swansea for swinging back at organisations with little regard for the toxic sludge passing through their platforms.

Swansea City became the first football club to announce a boycott of social media platforms 

STEPHEN HENDRY 

He fell short of his greater goal of qualifying for the worlds but at 52, he was still able to get one over his old fall guy Jimmy White. 

Three decades of sympathy to White, of course, but he knows the drill by now.

CHESS 

A video emerged this week of one of the world’s very best players, Hikaru Nakamura, engaged in a shoving match on a lawn a couple of years back with another grandmaster, Eric Hansen. 

You can get po-faced about this stuff or you can choose to find it quite funny.

NOT 

TOKYO OLYMPICS 

Remember the Iraqi information minister? That it was all going to be OK? It feels as though we’re heading back into that territory.

The swimming qualifiers in Tokyo have just been canned, which in turn follows the postponement of a water polo test event, a torch relay in Osaka and mass opposition to the Games within Japan.

It’s all going to be fine.

OCTAVIAN SOVRE 

He is the kind-hearted linesman who collected Erling Haaland’s autograph in the tunnel the other night to raise funds for an autism centre. 

He has now been temporarily suspended in his native Romania. Harsh? Possibly. But is it appropriate for an official to ask favours of a player at a match? Not really.

Romanian linesman Octavian Sovre (left) asked for Erling Haaland's (right) autograph

Romanian linesman Octavian Sovre (left) asked for Erling Haaland’s (right) autograph

WORLD ATHLETICS 

A British athlete, Beth Potter, is agitated that folk focused on her shoes following her unofficial and quite baffling 5km world record.

It’s understandable that she didn’t want her efforts diminished. But equally it is understandable if we all blame World Athletics for being too weak to control the shoe companies, and thus enabled a scenario where no one knows what they are watching anymore.

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