All men make mistakes, but wise men learn from them.
As prophetic quotes go, not many hit the spot better than this offering from Winston Churchill, which has rarely offered such poignancy to a British sports fan right now.
Take England cricket opener Alastair Cook, who could have coined the phrase himself had our great Prime Minister not got there first.
His head scrambled and his technique beset by indecision, Cook’s form suffered so alarmingly in ‘09 that many begrudged him a seat on the Ashes plane.
By the time the last ball of the series was bowled in Sydney, the Essex opener had scored three centuries (one a double), averaging 127.66 runs per innings and a run total for the series of 766, the second highest by any English batsmen.
The secret? A return to the uncluttered principles that got him into the team in the first place, hours of winter work with Graham Gooch and some bedtime reading of a motivational book, which pins faith in the law of attraction, apparently!
Those with shorter memories and a preference for golf could look at Darren Clarke, who made winning the Open look easier than a pitch and putt round Bantock.
Major-less after 20 years of majestic ball striking, the Ulsterman had suffered enough and did some thinking with sports psychologist Bob Rotella.
‘If I don’t hit it to a foot, I’m not going to make any birdies,’ said Clarke, before hooking up with the American and draining dozens of knee tremblers to supplement his faultless tee-to-green play.
Cue iconic claret jug, a week-long Guinness fueled bender and a place in golfing history.
As Wolves embark upon a third season in the Premier League, I hope Mick has taken note.
If a report in yesterday’s Express & Star is anything to go by, then the worry is that he hasn’t, as he declares that no more signings are likely this window, just minutes after watching Celtic’s James Forrest rip George Elokobi to bits at Parkhead.
Just days after Curtis Thompson did likewise for Notts County. Just months after the Premier League exposed our perennial left back frailties.
It is true that the time to be a Wolves fan has never been better.
It is also true that in many supporters’ eyes, a competent, reliable left back is all that is required to complete Mick’s otherwise commendable Premiership jigsaw.
Unless I am mistaken, Jermaine Pennant, Nathan Dyer and Marc Albrighton will all be lacing their boots again like last season, not to mention Valencia, Hoilett, Lennon, Ashley Young and co.
To sit back and hope teams won’t exploit the weakness for a third successive season would be folly.
A bit like Alastair Cook praying for a series of full tosses.