I WAS over the moon to see Usain Bolt prove all of his doubters wrong on Monday morning when he dashed home for glory in the 100-metres final.
The Jamaican superstar wasn’t exactly in the best form of his life in the lead up to the Games, but stormed over the finish line in 9.63 seconds to break his own Olympic record and become just the second man in history to claim back-to-back gold medals in what is the Games’ marquee event.
Bolt’s close friend and training partner Yohan Blake finished second after many tipped him to be the one to spoil Bolt’s London party.
But it wasn’t to be and Bolt – who is surely the biggest star at the Games – won by a clear margin to silence the critics.
There surely isn’t a more dominant team in world sport than the Jamaican sprinting fraternity.
The country in the Caribbean also took home gold and bronze in the women’s 100m final through Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Veronica Campbell-Brown respectively.
And to think that Bolt’s pet event, the 200m, is still to come on Friday morning (Australian time).
WATT HIGHLIGHTS SILVER LINING
Silver medal-winning (I emphasise the word “winning”) long jumper Mitchell Watt should be applauded for the way he addressed a media conference on the weekend.
“If people can’t realise a silver medal is a great achievement then there is something wrong with them,” he said.
He is spot on. To describe winning a silver medal as “disappointing” is nothing short of disgraceful. Just making the Olympics is a monumental achievement in its own right and should be celebrated.
What kind of message are we sending out to today’s youngsters by implying that anything less than winning is a failure?
A personal best time should be celebrated as much as a world record or a gold medal because that means the athlete performed to their absolute maximum.
The mainstream media in this country has a tendency to inflate the public’s expectations for certain teams or athletes and those misjudgments should in no way lead to a feeling of disappointment.
An athlete who doesn’t make it past the first round of heats should be congratulated as much as the Olympic champion.
SHEEDY MARKS HIS GIANT MILESTONE
So the GWS Giants delivered for coach Kevin Sheedy during his 1000th AFL game with a 34-point win over the hapless Port Adelaide Power.
It’s just a pity that only 34 people were at the Sydney Showground to witness it.
No, the crowd wasn’t quite that bad, but the AFL’s official figure of 6811 seemed severely inflated to say the least, judging by the droves and droves of empty seats.
The Giants broke the 100-point barrier for the first time and Port’s defeat spelled the end for coach Matthew Primus.
I wish I could tell you more about the match, but the ghostly atmosphere at the ground put me to sleep after about five minutes.
I will say that I feel sorry for Primus – in all honesty he didn’t have much to work with and his players looked completely disinterested on Saturday.
As for the Giants, things could go from good to better over the next few weeks with games against the Gold Coast Suns and Melbourne to come.