READERS’ LETTERS: World Cup shows playing field is not level

© GettyMinji Yeo of Korea Republic scores her team's first goal past Ingrid Hjelmseth of Norway during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group A match between Korea Republic and Norway at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 17, 2019.
Minji Yeo of Korea Republic scores her team's first goal past Ingrid Hjelmseth of Norway during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group A match between Korea Republic and Norway at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 17, 2019.

Madam, – Having just watched the Women’s World Cup football I am convinced the pastime should be a separate sport for the benefit of those wishing to see women playing football, and not a game of men’s football played by women.

Due to the difference between the sexes, it would appear that women lack stature, stamina, speed and control in order to play the game on the same playing field as men.

However, that is not to say the game cannot be improved for spectators in the same way that tennis or golf are adapted with three sets or shorter pars.

A football pitch is a large area to cover, and 90 minutes is a long time to run if one’s physical attributes lack the capacity for the required stamina and speed.

The goals are a formidable size to keep for a six foot six inch tall man and near impossible for a woman of nearly six feet.

The effort required to send the ball to various parts of the field reduces the speed and accuracy of any pass similarly with shooting, as the ball has to be lifted into the air and not hit straight, which has a negative effect on control.

Women’s football would be improved for spectators and become more competitive if some thought was given to reducing the size of the goals, the time for play and indeed the size and weight of the ball.

I fear some substitutions are necessary due to heart rate and not work rate, but the play acting for injury is as good, if not better.

Alan Bell.




Country will thrive after indy

Madam, – I was rather amused at Jill Stephenson’s “attack dog” letter about Keith Brown (SNP defaults to attack mode, Courier, June 14).

The SNP has the right to challenge of any public body, opposing political party or non-public body which chooses to criticise government policy or actions.

Clearly where the criticism is justified then I have no problem whatsoever.

But it strikes me that the SNP on a daily, if not hourly, basis has to suffer derision and criticism from many diverse sources political or otherwise.

It is my view the SNP has absorbed this criticism with little reaction and response.

At last “our attack dog” is challenging all before him. In relation to Scotland’s ability to sustain independence once again the “too wee too stupid and too small” argument springs to mind.

Clearly the ability to sustain an economy that will pay for the public sector we wish to enjoy is very important.

But the Growth Commission, world renowned economists, business experts, financial experts and the track record and experiences of independent countries of a similar size to Scotland all show we have the resources – both human and capital – to succeed as an independent nation.

Until we have all the economic levers at our disposal, access to all our resources and rid ourselves of the ridiculous UK spending on defence, nuclear and Westminster/the House of Lords et al, we will never know the real outcome.

Personally my prophecy is we will succeed in spades.

Dan Wood.

Charles Melvin

Gardens, Kirriemuir.


Feline crazy over Brexit

Madam, – I have a theory, based on observations over the past few years, that Westminster in particular and parts of England are manifesting the symptoms of Toxoplasmosis Gondii.

Yes, the cats have diseased voters with this insanity-inducing affliction.

How else can we explain Cameron deciding to have the EU referendum?

That darn pussy cat at No 10, that’s how.

Or how can we explain the Brexit result or the rise of UKIP/the Brexit Party and the popularity of Farage or the directionless, frenetic goings on in rat and mouse infested Westminster?

But it now looks as though this problem has reached its climax with the poor, demented, blinded and sad Tory Party victims about to partake in the ultimate destructive act of appointing Boris Johnson as prime minister.

We need a team of vets drafted in to sort this out.

Robert Ferguson.

19 New Gilston,




Last traces of respect gone

Madam, – Any respect I had for the Conservative Party has now disappeared like snow off a dyke in June.

It is frightening to think that any of these people who are entrenched in privilege, privatisation and cronyism will hold sway over Scotland.

With Ruth Davidson becoming almost hysterical about another independence referendum, and some of her chums in the Tory leadership election stating they will suspend Westminster to push through Brexit, it reveals the true face of modern Conservatism.

Those few honest men and women left in this dreadful spectacle that is the Conservative Party have my sympathy.

Bryan Auchterlonie.

Bluebell Cottage,



Joke was not a laughing matter

Madam, – Although Gordon Kennedy’s plea for us to restore our sense of humour (UK has lost its sense of humour, Courier, June 14) is a point generally well-taken, the instance he specifies, Jo Brand’s remark suggesting that battery acid could be thrown at the likes of Nigel Farage is not at all humorous.

These days there are people, and not only terrorists, who would be minded to throw acid at those not sharing their politics, race or religion.

Such a suggestion, even made in jest, could indeed prompt such a vicious, cruel crime.

Therefore, the casual reactions of the BBC and even the police to Jo Brand’s potentially vile utterance are careless, irresponsible and dangerous.

Dr Charles Wardrop.

111, Viewlands West,



Green plan costs uncostable

Madam, – A “cunning plan” from Business Secretary Greg Clark will restart subsidies to renewables.

The move is in contravention of a Treasury ruling that there should be no new subsidies until the total current burden starts to fall, which is not expected until the middle 2020s at the earliest.

His Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) will force larger electricity retailers to provide guaranteed off-take tariffs to renewable generators up to 5MW capacity (e.g. a wind farm of two 150 metre turbines).

The SEG tariff rate, supposed to be left to the market, will now be set by Ofgem guidance.

Under such bureaucratic bullying, retailers will have to provide expensive non-market rates and pass on the cost to their customers.

As neither tariffs nor the scale of adoption will be known, the government’s Impact Assessment is a charade.

The fact is the SEG policy is uncosted and uncostable.

No central registry of the tariffs will be kept, meaning that no one, from Treasury to general public, will be able to determine the full cost of the SEG policy at any time.

Finally, the SEG policy has no set closure date, meaning that unless cancelled it will apply in perpetuity. Nice one, Theresa!

Rev Dr John Cameron.

10 Howard Place,

St Andrews.