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Greg Baum

Greg Baum is chief sports columnist and associate editor with The Age

Jim Pavlidis illustration

Cheats never prosper? Don't bet on it

What to do about those St Kilda footballers who last weekend revealed themselves not to have evolved since before most were born, since a time when Tony Shaw said he would use a racist epithet every week if he thought it would gain his team an edge, a time so long ago it can be found only by carbon-dating?

AOC president John Coates is looking to regain ground on his challenger Danni Roche.

AOC furore: where there was fire, there still is

The standing down of AOC media man Mike Tancred took some of the heat out of squabble at the top of Australian sport, but it did not put out the fire, which was flaring up again within hours.

John Coates, who apologised last week.

Coates plays the trump card

Coates clash with John Wylie is not news. What is extraordinary is Coates' account of it, self-reporting his aggressive posturing, his snarls and a foul-mouthed flourish.

Roger Federer of Switzerland plays a backhand in his match against Rafael Nadal of Spain in the final of the Miami Open.

Backhand to the future

It's not just that Roger Federer at 35 is winning at the same rate as when he was 25. It's not just that he has beaten Rafael Nadal three times in a row for the first time in their long rivalry, all in finals.

James Pattinson of the Bushrangers celebrates with teammates after claiming the wicket of South Australia's Callum ...

Victoria completes 'accidental' Shield hat-trick

In 2014, Cricket Victoria reversed its emphasis. From time immemorial, it had set out to win Sheffield Shields, believing the bi-product would be a stream of Australian players. Three years ago, it decided that its No. 1 KPI would be Australian caps, and the Shield could look after itself. One consequence, says CA cricket manager Shaun Graf, is that coaches and selectors became more adventurous, also looked more favourably on youth.

Lokesh Rahul celebrates as India wins the fourth Test.

Small victories all round, but still the Indians prevail

Australia had moral victories, and personal victories, and technical victories, and an actual victory. They had a victory over doomsayers - and let's face it, we were legion - a victory over an old phobia about playing in India, and a victory for their unorthodox, laboratory-style preparation. They won respect, which they have not always enjoyed in India. They won hearts. They probably even won the war of words, if anyone cares.