Italian region launches grape and football competition

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  • Friday 13 February 2009

An Italian trade body is looking for writers to come up with the most original literary work on the affinities between the Grignolino grape and football.

David Beckham

Terre d'Asti, a promotional body representing the Asti region in northern Italy, has launched Wine & Passion, an international literature competition to promote Grignolino d'Asti wine.

The red grape grows on the hills surrounding Asti, in the Piedmont region of Italy. It has been cultivated since the 18th century and is generally made as a youthful dry red wine.

Among locals it is seen as an anarchic grape occasionally capable of excellence. Andrea Cerrato of Terre d'Asti said that if the grape was a footballer it would be given the number seven shirt.

‘When teams were numbered from one to 11, the number seven shirt belonged to the most talented and rebellious player,’ he said. ‘Grignolino d'Asti is our number 7, and literature and football will give us a hand to promote this unsung hero.’

In addition to the Wine & Passion contest, Terre d'Asti says it will launch other literary competitions to promote the less known varieties of the region. The deadline for all entries is April 11.

Some of the most well known footballers to sport the number seven jersey include: Stanley Matthews (Stoke, England), Jairzinho (Botafogo, Brazil) George Best (Manchester Utd), Didier Deschamps (Juventus, France), Henrik Larsson (Celtic), Alexander Shevchenko (AC Milan), Christiano Ronaldo (Manchester Utd), Raul (Real Madrid) and Eric Cantona (Manchester Utd).

The winner’s story will be published in June.

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