?The bad weather during the British Open's third round may have humbled the golfers (page 40), but ABC's coverage excelled on several fronts. A chart showed how drastically the temperature and the wind speed, and with it the scoring, had changed over a three-hour period. Peter Alliss's dry British wit was the perfect tonic for this day, whether he was referring to the scores of Duffy Waldorf's first five holes (5-5-5-4-7) as "like the dialing code for Tierra del Fuego" or delivering a deadpan ode to "this lovely day in Scotland overlooking the Firth of Forth." One lasting memory will be a shot of Japan's Shigeki Maruyama hiding from the wind by crouching behind a barrier near the 8th tee, blowing pitifully on his hands and looking like a stray cat caught in the rain.
? Larry Merchant is often ponderous as he searches for profundity in the sordid sweet science of boxing, but he was sharp during last Saturday's HBO coverage of the Vernon Forrest-Shane Mosley fight (page 52). When Forrest tried to open his postfight interview with an Oscar-worthy thank-you list, Merchant gruffly cut him off. "Let's talk about the fight," Merchant snapped. "The people don't care who put clothes on your back."
? ESPN's suspension of radio and TV host Tony Kornheiser smacks of soreheadedness. Kornheiser's grumbling during commercial breaks about the network's decision to fire two producers on his radio show was aired over the Internet. ESPN then benched Kornheiser for a week from the radio show and from Pardon the Interruption, the hot TV program he cohosts with Michael Wilbon. The rub is that Kornheiser's shtick has long included barbs at his employer; the network is taking offense at the crotchety style it has promoted.