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Old 07-13-10, 06:04 AM
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Bender Bending Rodriguez, Esq.
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Ben Reiter: 50 post-World Cup observations

JOHANNESBURG -- It made perfect sense that Andres Iniesta's 116th-minute, World Cup-winning goal Sunday night came as such a surprise -- a surprise in that both the Spanish and Dutch sides seemed to be utterly exhausted and playing for penalty kicks, and a surprise in that the Spanish players managed to stop rolling around on the ground long enough to score it. This was, after all, a month full of surprises, nearly all of them good ones, nearly all of them exhilarating. It wasn't long ago that rumors persisted that FIFA might have to snatch the sporting world's signature event from South Africa, and move it to a place like Germany. South Africa would never be ready in time, people thought. It wouldn't be safe, people thought. But it was ready, and it was safe, and Iniesta's goal capped a tournament that proved more accomplished than even most South Africans could have imagined. "WE'VE DONE IT!" exclaimed the headline of Monday morning's edition of South Africa's The Times newspaper.

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