Thursday, June 28, 2007

Fist pump

The Guardian's GBG (Game By Game) coverage of Tim Henman’s second round Wimbledon match today was excellent, mainly thanks to the discussions on the subject of Henners’ famous celebratory fist pump. Here are the highlights:

"For Facebookers," writes Robert Kerrigan, "There's a group for An Appreciation of the Henman Fist Pump." There are currently 54 members - let's see if we can't hit the big six-zero.

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"Surely it is more a fist hold than fist pump?" questions Nick Donovan. But that would imply that, while he is clenching his right fist, his left hand is taking the weight of said other hand, no? I do agree that "pump" is an unacceptable description, though. Any other ideas?

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"It's really not a fist pump at all, is it?" says Rob Nash. Is there an echo in this GBG? "I was pondering 'fist brandish', but I think 'fist flaunt' actually has a nicer ring to it (and it's suitably polite for easily offended Middle-Englanders)."

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"The Queen of the Fist Pump is surely La Sharapova," says Gary Naylor. "How she got so good at it is an absolute mystery to me."

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"I would argue that the 'fist' part of 'fist pump' is also misleading," not-quite-argues Jordan Glossop. "I suggest Henman Hand Squeeze." While Martin Piper writes: "It's more like a fist waft." Ok, so it's not a fist pump, it's a "Henman hand-squeeze waft". My colleague James Dart reckons it's pretty similar to Bruce Forsyth's Generation Game pose.

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"Is it too late for Timothy to come up with a new signature if he makes it to the second week?" asks Stewart Todd. "Could he ditch the fisting, so to speak, and perhaps on Sunday get a roaring tiger tattoo on his back Beckham-style, and reveal it on Centre Court next week to astonished gasps from the strawberry and cream brigade with John Lloyd saying 'too good!'?"

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"You must realise that Tim lost an arm-wrestling match to a girl called Mary when he was in the second year at school," explains Andy Walker. "Your so-called 'fist pump' is actually his challenge to her to return to the ring for a best of three showdown." If it's a certain Maria of whom you speak, I wouldn't fancy Tiger's chances.

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"There are now 101 members of the Fist Pump appreciation group," writes Penelope Rance. "You could have some opposition in changing the name."

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"Perhaps if all the readers pump their fist as one, Tim will feel the force and come back to win," suggests Edward Platt, who also believes that Yuri Geller was to thank/blame for Gary McAllister blasting his penalty over against England in Euro 96.

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Will that be the last we see of Tim Henman at Wimbledon? He has promised he will be back next year so hopefully we'll have a few more glimpses of the Henman hand-squeeze waft then.

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