Not even the most avid sports fan could claim a case of Olympic fever just yet; mainly because of the recent Russian drug scandal, plus it’s hard to catch anything when surrounding in mosquito nets.
If that didn’t dampen your enthusiasm we’ve had to endure Chef de Mission Kitty Chiller who hasn’t missed a beat when it comes to a public relations opportunity. When Eddie McGuire takes a pot shot at you for being over exposed in the media it’s time to take stock and walk away from the media spotlight, hopefully he will one day listen to such advice.
The latest Andrew Bogut ‘story’ about how an NBA Champion won’t fit into his Olympic village bed is all I can take before the activities commence. The dribble coming out of Rio for the last week only alludes to far too many Australian media in Rio covering the games. As soon as the competition commences all this will quickly be forgotten and we can go on supporting the Boomers, Matildas, Opals, and every other Australian sporting team.
Tennis and Golf have also embarrassed the International Olympic Committee with neither sport genuinely interested in competing in Rio. Individual sports that treat the Olympics as a whistle stop tour shouldn’t be considered as part of the Olympic program. Let’s be honest will anyone even notice these sports during the telecast.
The Olympics have produced some memorable moments over the years, Ben Johnson’s 9.79, the USA Dream Team annihilating anyone in their path as one of the greatest Olympic teams ever and who could ever forget Kieran Perkins superhuman effort in Atlanta. The 2016 version of sports biggest party needs one of these moments to lift the negative energy that covers Rio, much like the smog and pollution that surrounds the party city.
I cannot remember such a troubled games, and we are still a few days away from the opening ceremony.
We cannot condone what the Russians have done to systematically cheat their way to Olympic gold but we cannot for one moment think they are alone. Numerous scandals will happen during the games but this shouldn’t take the focus away from those athletes who have given their heart and soul to be in Brazil and will grasp their opportunity with both hands.
As a sporting nation we must now shift the focus from scandal and muckraking to what the Olympics are really about, the athletes. Rio 2016 has been surrounded by far too much negativity and we must now focus on the events themselves. As soon as the Opening ceremony commences (Early Saturday morning AEST) the focus has to turn around and performances need to dictate the news coming out of Rio. Some athletes will falter, but others will shine brightly and deserve the attention of a nation.
For many, the Olympics is a once in a lifetime opportunity they shouldn’t be ignored because of the dark clouds currently surrounding the Olympic village. Instead of feeding into the anti Olympic sentiment currently being pushed by many we must finally get excited about the XXXI Olympiad.
At the end of the day it’s more than a fortnight of wall to wall sport, and a much needed escape from the monotony of our winter codes and the rubbish weather we are currently experiencing.Google+