An Olympian rant

An Olympian rant

I realize we’re supposed to be all imbued in the Olympic spirit and all, but I can’t hold back any more. Here are a couple of things I need to get off my chest:

Whinge 1 – Handball
You could be mistaken for thinking that this was simply a bunch of second rate basket ballers dicking around with the water polo equipment in the gym until you realize that it’s actually an Olympic sport and that it’s going to roll on for the next 20 days.

Seriously, I made up more convincing “sports” than this in the playground (one of them involving drop kicking a ball through basket ball hoops).

You keep waiting for some hidden skill to be unearthed, to realize that it really is as simple as throwing a ball past a guy wearing a velour tracksuit. I thought Dodgeball was fictional, these guys could use it as a coaching manual. If ever there was a reason for rugby regaining Olympic status, this is it.

Whinge 2 – Aussie swimming
Fair enough, Phelps is a freak. But I tune into the womens 100m backstroke final for example. Two poms, yes poms and not an Aussie in sight. And then there’s Sullivan getting done in the 100 in a time slower than his heat the day before, Hackett by an Algerian, the list goes on. What the f*ck is going on?

Not just in the swimming, our expertise seems to be getting silver and bronze at these games. It’s simple, if we don’t cane in the pool then we’re stuffed.

Someone stat me wrong please, but with the poms getting ahead on the medal table, this ain’t looking good. In Athens we came 4th with 19 golds. Is it possible to come close to that from here?

since writing this, just today we’ve nudged ahead of the poms with a couple of sailing gold. While feeling slightly better, maybe temporarily, my question over the performance in the pool still stands.


Matt started G&GR just before the 2007 Rugby World Cup and has been enslaved ever since. Follow him on twitter: @MattRowley

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