BOUBA THE ELE­PHANT

Who needs Kylian Mbappe when you have a tightrop­ing pachy­derm, eh?

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Monaco’s per­for­mances on the field may have grabbed the head­lines in re­cent times, but their mas­cot is de­ter­mined not to be over­shad­owed. Af­ter mys­te­ri­ously dis­ap­pear­ing for a pe­riod, Bouba the Ele­phant made his glo­ri­ous re­turn to the club last year and swiftly set about try­ing to qual­ify for the Rio Olympics, ob­vi­ously. Sadly Bouba’s hopes were dashed: the 100m time he posted on the track at Monaco’s Stade Louis II was not about to trou­ble Usain Bolt. He did soar to 3m in the pole vault, though – not too shabby for an ele­phant, and briefly earn­ing him the nick­name ‘Sergey Bouba’. Just an­other 3.17m to go, and the world record is his. Bouba is named af­ter a real ele­phant that used to re­side at the zoo next to the club’s for­mer sta­dium: sup­pos­edly the an­i­mal could oc­ca­sion­ally be heard over the ‘noise’ of the crowd at games. Mas­cot Bouba un­der­took an even more dar­ing stunt this Jan­uary: at­tempt­ing a tightrope walk be­tween two mas­sive rocks over­look­ing the sta­dium, at an al­ti­tude of 500m. Sus­pi­ciously, how­ever, the pachy­derm sud­denly ap­peared to have some hu­man feet. In fact, hold on a minute, Monaco had a mas­cot that dis­ap­peared for a while, then re­turned in 2016? It’s Radamel Fal­cao in that suit, isn’t it?

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