For once this piece is really balls - Babolat balls to be precise.
At the beginning of the French Open tennis tournament, which finished last weekend, new balls were on display. They were said to be heavier and less resistant to spin, which was predicted to play into the hands of players other than the man who normally wins the event, Spain's Raphael Nadal.
Nadal had to endure a nervous five-set match against his first opponent, which led to much speculation his reign was about to end. It seemed odd that Babolat, which sponsors Nadal, should produce something he struggled to control.
However, as the fortnight passed, he proceeded to the final where he,as he normally does, won the Coupe des Mousquetaires.
He has now lost only one match at Roland Garros, the home of the French Open, in his entire career, and that was when his knees were dodgy. It strikes me he could probably win on clay even if they were using cricket balls, but I still don't understand why Babolat don't make balls that favour him, rather than threaten to thwart him.
The relationship between sponsor and client is always a tough one though. I had thought the lesson of the Tiger Woods affair is you shouldn't sponsor an individual unless, of course, you are a manufacturer of sporting goods and you want your brand associated with the best players.
But it turns out Patek Philippe, the maker of some of the world's most coveted watches, is sponsoring Ryan Giggs, the Manchester United player who became notorious for applying for a super-injunction to stop newspapers reporting on his private life. As so often, this backfired Woods-like, particularly as everybody with a Twitter account decided to weigh in with their version of events regarding the football star and his alleged infidelities.
I have seen no advertisements with Giggs sporting a Swiss watch, but perhaps his sole role for the company was to produce company brochures in the Manchester United dressing room. Either way, it now looks a misplaced investment.
I had always thought Germany was the easiest country in the world to report from, but I am beginning to think Norway might overtake it.
First of all, Norwegians seem to have understood that if people are to use public transport, it must be faster, cheaper and more convenient than a car. And there it is. To get from the airport to the city of Oslo you just swipe your credit card and the gates open. The train wastes no time, hurrying through to the central station. From there you can get a tram, which is also quick and easy to use.
Oslo is full of trees, parks and fountains, and cluttered with statues of figures such as Winston Churchill, granite torsos, clowns and entertainers and my favourite, a large polar bear wandering along with his nose in the air.
Meetings take place on time - woe betide anyone who shows up late - and Norwegians all speak good English. Most surprising of all, when you even look as if you might want to cross the road, the traffic screeches to a halt. The only drawback I can see is that many of the people walk very slowly. The only other problem was when I tried to withdraw some money from an ATM. It gave me the option of working the transaction out in English, Norwegian and Sami. While I liked the idea of using the local language, I worried that I might transfer my overdraft to a reindeer, or even a polar bear.