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  • December 11, 2017 10:32 AM GMT

    Michael Bisping has exclusively told Sky Sports that he must win his upcoming UFC world championship fight quickly because he lacks the fitness to last the distance. The Lancashire veteran has been drafted into the UFC 199 main event against middleweight champion Luke Rockhold at less than three weeks notice due to an injury to Chris Weidman. Bisping gets title shot He could become first Brit to win UFC belt Yet Bisping, who has patiently waited a decade and could become Britains first UFC champion, admits the chaotic realities of fighting Rockhold on short notice do not favour him because hes spent the past month on a movie set. I need to put him away because five rounds favour him, lets be realistic about that. Michael Bisping Its not perfect circumstances but this is my lifestyle, he told Sky Sports in an exclusive interview. Its short-notice, so bittersweet, but Ive worked a lifetime for this.I need to put him away because five rounds favour him, lets be realistic about that. Hell be in better shape than me because hes been preparing for 10 weeks for a world title fight and Ive been filming a movie. Michael Bisping (left) aims a left hook at Luke Rockhold in 2014 Hell look to drag this into a five-round war where hes got the advantage, thats a fact. Ive got to take him out early so Ill go back to my younger days - live by the sword, die by the sword.Ive got two-and-a-half weeks - my weight isnt too bad so Ill have to go on an extreme diet, but I wouldnt have it any other way. Two-and-a-half weeks of intense, crazy work.I actually texted [UFC president] Dana White on Tuesday saying, If someone is hurt, Ill take it. I pitched my case. The first time I heard was the UFC announcement. Michael Bisping (left) evades a punch from Luke Rockhold Bisping has already met Rockhold and came off worse, dropping to a submission defeat in 2014 amid heated personal animosity.The rivalry was sparked by Bispings insistence that he had triumphed in a behind-closed-doors sparring session and that fateful tale still instills belief.Ive fought this guy before in the gym then we fought for real, its 1-1, the 37-year-old said. Michael Bisping appeals to the referee after being cut above the eye by Luke Rockhold He never hurt me with anything. He head-butted me in the first round which opened a nasty cut. Up until that point it was going very smoothly. Congratulations to him for getting the job done but there were mitigating circumstances.Nobody was in there except for me and him - I know how he felt, and the strength of his kicks and punches. Those things make me comfortable in taking this next fight.Bispings most recent outing was a career-best win against former middleweight champion Anderson Silva at Londons O2 Arena, with Rockhold watching from ringside. Rockhold can be as smug as he likes but when I dropped him in sparring, he certainly felt it. Michael Bisping Prior to that fight Rockhold told Sky Sports that if we fought again I wouldnt need to keep my hands up which drew laughter from Bisping.The Brit replied: Im pretty sure Anderson said the same thing but he got dropped twice and out-boxed consistently. Rockhold can be as smug as he likes but when I dropped him in sparring, he certainly felt it. Well see how smug he is after the fight.This isnt a case of cashing in and trying to earn a few quid before calling it quits. I just beat the greatest of all time, Silva, and Im the only person to legitimately beat him.This is my destiny, I love the way its come together. Rockhold exclusive Champ spoke to Sky Sports and predicts three-minute win Also See: Bisping gets UFC title shot UFC Womens Suns Jerseys . -- The boos poured down on Tom Brady and the New England Patriots at the end of a horrible first half. Discount Suns Jerseys . Thats not a comment on the suspension that banished the Portland Winterhawks general manager and coach from his Western Hockey League teams bench for most of the 2012-13 season. http://www.cheapsunsjerseyschina.com/ . The 29-year-old from Port Colborne, Ont., has nothing but good things to say about former U.S. marine Liz (Girlrilla) Carmouche ahead of their co-main event Wednesday on the UFCs "Fight for the Troops" televised card in Fort Campbell, Ky. Cheap Suns Jerseys .com) - Richie Incognito has reportedly been admitted to a psychiatric care unit in Arizona. Suns Jerseys Outlet . I cant pinpoint a date, but I do remember a player from my youth. Brian Downing was with the Chicago White Sox at a time when I listened to every game I possibly could on the radio. That particular season the late great Harry Caray was calling the White Sox games. When I was a boy my parents told me the first cricket match I ever attended - between two English villages in Kent - was interrupted by a dogfight between Royal Air Force and Luftwaffe aircraft during the Battle of Britain. Later, when a college student in Baroda in Gujarat, I was told by my old teacher Chanchi Mehta that the first cricket played in India was along the shoreline near Surat.Cricket has a store of stories, some told and retold, others never told. I am probably one of those who has spent a lifetime scribbling because as a boy it became clear I was incompetent at pretty well everything I tried: to adapt the old adage, those who can, do; those who cant, write.Cricket, for example. I loved cricket but was so shortsighted I could not see the ball, my sole batting stroke a forward poke. At least using a pen I can manage a few late cuts. I had a good education in literary and historical studies, and those studies had originally been incorporated into the educational system at the same time as the rise of the detective story: Sherlock Holmes has a lot to answer for; even the Dr Watsons such as I cannot resist following the clues and trying to solve the putative mysteries.So what about those two cricketings my elders told me about? What happened when the Luftwaffe interrupted the village match? Where was the first cricket played in India and by whom? My research into that 1721 game was by way of tribute to my old teacher in Baroda, and that into the 1940 match a similar tribute to my journalist father - as well, possibly, as a search for a fragment of my own irrecoverable childhood, being then little more than a small creature on my parents shoulders.Kent, 1940 At any time during my parents lifetimes I could have asked them and many others about the match our village, Farningham, played at Shoreham in the Darent valley in August 1940, but 70 years on, all of them were dead. The story was lost. Almost.My first piece of luck was finding the scorebook. Years before, I had seen it in the pub at Shoreham kept by four generations of a cricketing family named (happily) Summerfield. But they were long gone, somewhere down on the Weald, the original home of cricket. Several numbers into Summerfields in the telephone book, I found the fifth generation: they still had the scorebook.Scores: Farningham (playing one short) 80 for 5 with one opening batsman retired. Shoreham, 106 for 9. The invaluable ball-by-ball record of the match included a unique thickly scored pencil line in the home side bowling analysis, denoting the air-raid interruption to the match, but there was no mention of a declaration to account for Farninghams foreshortened innings.This curiosity of the scoresheet was explained by an item my cousin luckily discovered in the local newspaper for the following week. Under the heading Raid Stopped Play there was an anonymous censored report (all names eliminated) but clearly written by my father about this match.The players, intent on the game, had not heard the air-raid siren nor the sounds of an aerial battle to the north that caused an umpire to halt proceedings at the end of an over. Retiring to the pavilion, four of the visiting Farningham players, including the captain, who was batting, declared that, as members of the newly formed Home Guard, they should return home to deal with the (usually incendiary) fallout from the raid. Shoreham lost only one player, a special constable.Having failed to invade England that summer, the Nazis were about to begin the Blitz of London. A fine day for cricket was also a fine day for 300 German planes to launch a raid up the Thames. Although Kent was littered with discarded bombs and crippled aircraft after such raids, the remainder of the depleted Farningham team obviously decided it was at least as important to see off Shoreham as the Germans. My fathers article blamed Hitler for their eventual defeat.Cambay, 1721 Details of a cricket match in 1940 are still within reach: to discover anything about cricket in India in 1721 is more difficult. No scorebook, no newspaper reports. No maps, few documents. The cricket receives only a mere mention in a book written by a rather unreliable able seaman, Clement Downing.While Downing says nothing about the actual cricket in his book, A History of the Indian Wars - which details naval life on the west coast of India while the Marathas challenge Mughal power and the East India Company clings on to little Bombay - he says a lot about the circumstances of it.Downing tells of a naval expedition in the Gulf of Cambay that, having missed the spring tides that would have taken them into Cambay, was forced to lay up for nearly a fortnight at a place whhere they diverted themselves with cricket and other exercises.dddddddddddd. Downing got many Indian names wrong and threw historians with his reference to a non-existent Gujarati place called Chimnah/w, about 30 miles from Cambay. The details of its hydrography, combined with two other references he makes to the place, determine that he can only be talking about the cotton-producing Jambusar pargana (sub-division) with its port at the Tankari bunder on the Dhadhar river.Two country-built ships, the Company sloop the Emilia, on which Downing was serving as a lieutenant, and the Hunter galley, were sent in December 1721 to protect small merchant vessels from further attack by pirates - Kolis from Sultanpur and other local Kathiawar navies. The East India Company records from Surat (though incomplete) and Bombay support our guesswork.But who was playing? We know from Company records the Emilia had a complement of 20, of which Downing tells us three were white men. The Hunter had a complement of 80, and we might again expect a common ratio on the country craft of seven Indians to one European. Given that the two captains took some men up to Cambay in a gallivat, we might guess there remained on the riverside some 20 or so Europeans and 40 or more Indians.All this information is necessary because historians have assumed only English sailors played in this instance. It may be so. Or it may not. Apart from the overwhelming number of Indians, consider for a moment Downings remark that the cricket was part of a whole series of exercises and that these went on for nearly a fortnight.Although the game of cricket was only just emerging from the shadows in England at this time - as the gentry started to lay bets on individual matches - the earliest references to it have it as the leading part of other plays. This is true too of country fairs like that at Meopham in Kent. Kents first big aristocratic patron, Lord John Sackville, not only promoted individual matches but also cricketalia (cricket and other things).On the banks of the Dhadhar, cricket was apparently the leading one of many exercises. Were the exercises drill or recreation? All Indians residing in Bombay at this time were required to do bi-monthly drills - unless, as conscientious objectors, they paid a hefty indemnity. Paid servants in the Companys marine would surely be required to take part in all the exercises.How formal was the cricket? The earliest surviving records of Company cricket (dating from a full century later) show Indians and Brits playing cricket together in teams captained by junior officers, but while it is possible that the Dhadhar saw Lieut. Rathbones XI v Lieut. Stevens XI, it was probably a great deal more informal. Cricket, though already played in teams of 11, was a matter, as a Swiss traveller to England put it in 1728, of men going into a large open field (without boundaries) and knocking a small ball about with a piece of (curved) wood.The Companys men fully expected a raid to stop play. Instead the Kolis, and no doubt other communities as well, came down every day to watch. At a time when, as Downing shows, the Kolis invariably figured as the object of punitive expeditions, the cricketing proved so disarming that the Companys men (including their own Kolis) set off in search of Christmas provisions and treat and trade to everyones satisfaction.Although one of the interpreters (perhaps officiously) warned that several Kolis wielding swords meant them mischief, there is no evidence of it. Cricket fans might be tempted to believe that the Kolis, like their near-namesake Virat Kohli, were simply practising the sweeping strokes they had been observing all fortnight. The link There may even be a link between our two cricketings. Dartford, the town at the end of the Darent valley where the 1940 match was played, was said in 1723 to have the best cricketers in England. It is also the town where the Darent runs into the Thames and it was along this Kent shore that crews were recruited for the East Indiamen: cricket on the Dhadhar could well have originated with men from these parts.Shoreham itself appears among the earliest references to cricket, in court records: in the 17th century the only notice taken of the peoples game is when the Law (concerning trespass, rape or the sabbath) is broken. Matches such as ours provide glimpses of the lost history of ordinary people, whether Kentishmen or Kolis. As it happens, on both these occasions the cricket presents itself as a preferable alternative to war, the staple of official history. 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